"The glandular powder separated from the strobiles of Humulus Lupulus, Linné (Nat. Ord.—Urticaceae)"—(U. S. P.).
Preparation.—On beating or rubbing the strobiles of hops, and then sifting them, a glandular powder is separated, and is known in medicine as Lupulin. The sifting is necessary to remove the broken bracts and other vegetable. parts. About 10 per cent of lupulin is thus obtained from the dried hops.
Description.—"Bright brownish-yellow, becoming, yellowish-brown, resinous, consisting of minute granules, which, as seen under the microscope, are subglobular, or rather hood-shaped, and reticulate; aromatic and bitter. When lupulin is agitated with water and the mixture allowed to stand, no considerable sediment (sand, etc.) should be deposited. When ignited, lupulin should not leave more than 10 per cent of ash"—(U. S. P.). Lupulin is of a cellular texture and somewhat transparent. The common center around which the cells are arranged, is called the hilum. Lupulin has the odor and taste common to the hop; a gentle heat renders it tenacious; exposed to flame it burns. Owing to the presence of the oil, lupulin, in quantities, is liable to spontaneous combustion (see record of such combustion on board a vessel lying in the Bremen harbor, in Amer. Jour. Pharm., 1893, p. 555). Unless carefully dried it soon loses its properties, which, indeed, under all circumstances are impaired by keeping. It is always preferable to the hop for medicinal purposes. The constituents of lupulin are essentially those described under Humulus (hops), which see.
Action, Medical Uses, and Dosage.—(See Humulus also.) Lupulin, or its tincture, is used in delirium tremens, and wakefulness in connection with nervous irritation, anxiety, or exhaustion; it does not disorder the stomach nor cause constipation, as with opium. Also useful in after-pains, to suppress venereal desires, and allay the pain attendant on gonorrhoea. Lupulin has been found especially useful in cases of genito-urinary irritations, irritation of the bladder, as well as in those irritable conditions of the brain and genital organs, so often accompanying nocturnal emissions; it allays the irritation, promotes sleep, and cheeks the emissions, in quite a number of cases; it has also been advised as an efficient remedy in chordee. In these instances it requires to be given in quite large doses, double or triple the ordinary ones. The ethereal tincture of lupulin forms what was formerly termed the ethereal oil of lupulin (see Oleoresina Lupulini) by allowing the ether to spontaneously evaporate. It produces at first a stimulant influence, succeded by a very agreeable, calming sensation, and has been used with advantage in some cases of nervous irritability where opium and other narcotics failed. It does not, however, appear to possess any narcotic properties. A mixture of oil of chamomile, 1 fluid drachm, and ethereal oil of lupulin, 1 ½ fluid drachm, dissolved in sulphuric ether, half a fluid ounce, in doses of from 30 to 60 drops, every 3 or 4 hours, has been found beneficial in dysmenorrhoea, and other painful uterine diseases. Mr. Duckworth advises as a very remarkable hypnotic, a preparation composed of lupulin, 1 ounce, aromatic spirit of ammonia, half a pint; mix, let them macerate for 7 days, with agitation from time to time, filter, and add more fluid to procure half a pint. The dose is from 15 minims to 1 fluid drachm. The dose of lupulin is from 6 to 10 grains, which may be given in powder, or in pill made by merely rubbing it in a warm mortar till it acquires a pilular consistence. The tincture of lupulin may be given in doses of from 1 to 4 fluid drachms. Tincture of lupulin, as well as tincture of hop, may be used in dyspepsia, with marked restlessness, and disposition to brood over trouble. Use it also when fermentation and eructations occur after meals. Insomnia, due to worry or neurasthenia, is relieved by lupulin. The odor of lupulin, like that of hop, will cause in susceptible individuals a distressing sick headache, accompanied with extreme and prostrating nausea; on the other hand both lupulin and hop have been employed to relieve various forms of headache, chiefly in debilitated subjects, with cerebral hyperemia.
Specific Indications and Uses.—Nervousness, irritability, disposition to brood over trouble, delirium, insomnia, cerebral hyperemia; fermentative dyspepsia, with acid eructations; genital and mental irritability associated with spermatorrhoea.