Synonyms.—Cranesbill; Alum Root.
Geranium consists of the dried rhizome of Geranium maculatum, Linn. (N.O. Geraniaceae), a perennial plant which is indigenous to the United States, growing in moist woods, thickets, and hedges. The rhizome is of horizontal growth and should be collected during the autumn. The drug is official in the U.S.P. It occurs in dark brown, longitudinally wrinkled pieces, which are somewhat flattened, rather sharply tuberculated, from 2.5 to 10 centimetres long, and from 3 to 15 millimetres in diameter; the fracture is short and light reddish-brown or purplish; the bark is thin, the wood indistinct, and the central pith large. The drug has a slight odour and a strongly astringent taste.
Constituents.—The active constituents of geranium are tannic and gallic acids, but it also contains resin, gum, pectin, sugar, starch, and colouring matter. The percentage of tannic acid varies from 10 to 28 per cent.
Action and Uses.—Geranium has an astringent action and is peculiarly serviceable for infants and delicate persons, being free, from unpleasant taste. It has been used for diarrhoea, cholera infantum, chronic dysentery, and haemorrhage generally, being administered in the form of powder, decoction (1 in 20), or fluidextract; it has also been employed instead of kino or catechu as an application for indolent ulcers, as an injection in gleet and leucorrhoea, and as a gargle in various affections of the mouth and throat
Dose.—1 to 2 grammes (15 to 30 grains).
- Fluidextractum Geranii, U.S.P.—FLUIDEXTRACT OF GERANIUM. Syn.—Extractum Geranii Fluidum.
- Prepared by macero-percolation of 100 of geranium, in No. 30 powder, with a mixture of glycerin, 10, alcohol (95 per cent.), 60; and water, 30, the percolation being completed to exhaustion with a mixture of alcohol (95 per cent.), 60 and water, 40. The first 80 of percolate is reserved and the remainder evaporated to a soft extract, which is dissolved in the reserved portion, after which sufficient menstruum is added to produce 100. Average dose.—1 mil (15 minims).