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Scammonium.

Botanical name:

The gum resin of Convolvulus scammonium.-Syria.

Dose.—The dose of Scammony will vary from gr. j. to gr. x., according to the action desired.

Therapeutic Action.—Scammony is very active, harsh and drastic, and for this reason the cases in which it is admissible as an independent cathartic, are by no means numerous. Its highly drastic properties would preclude the propriety of its employment in all cases where an irritation of the mucous membrane of the bowels exists. Its disagreeable taste also renders it an objectionable agent.

The Scammony may be combined with other active and equally harsh or drastic cathartics with advantage, their drastic action being modified and rendered comparatively mild by combining two or more of them together. So with this article, it may be added to other cathartics and aid in forming a purgative compound decidedly superior to either article alone.

It is appropriate in torpid states of the bowels, obstinate constipation, coma, apoplexy, cerebral congestions or inflammations, etc., cases in which a powerful derivative impression is desirable. It is sometimes employed as a vermifuge; it frequently destroys worms, and causes their evacuation, probably on account of the violence of its action.


The American Eclectic Materia Medica and Therapeutics, 1898, was written by John M. Scudder, M.D.



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