Remarks on Two Officinal Fluid Extracts.


By X. T. BATES, M. D.

There are some important additions which the Committee for the Revision of the Pharmacopoeia should consider, and the surest way to bring them to their attention and also to that of the public is the insertion of this article in the American Journal of Pharmacy.

Ext. Sarsap. Fluid. Comp.

This article, as now prepared, should contain, as an alterative, conium as well as pipsissewa and dulcamara. I have always added to the U. S. P. fluid ext. before using it, for each pint, two fluidounces of fluid ext. conium, two fluidounces of fluid ext. dulcamara, and two fluidounces of fluid ext. of princess pine, with very decided increase in its alterative effects, and have also added for each fluidounce of the above 10 grains iodid. potassium, 4 grains pyrophosphate iron; so that in the ordinary dose of one to two teaspoonfuls the patient gets 2 ½ grs. of iodide of potassium and 1 grain of the iron salt, which is sufficient in this combination. As a general rule, preparations containing iron have too much, thus producing ill effects. No more should be taken than can be assimilated.

Ext. Buchu Fluidum.

This article at present is having a large sale, from the extensive advertising it receives, and the numerous and overstated purposes for which it is widely recommended. This article, as far as my experience with it goes, contains very little, if any, of the medical properties of the plant, and appears to be highly flavored with peppermint.

The Pharmacopoeia does not provide for any compound preparation, nor have I met with any in the numerous publications on fluid extracts, except in the "Journal of Materia Medica," which proposes the following:

Take of Buchu Leaves, 16 troy oz.
Uva Ursi, 4 troy oz.
Cubebs, 4 troy oz.
Juniper Berries, 4 troy oz.

Cover with alcohol, 95 per cent., and macerate for a week; then exhaust with alcohol at 70°, and evaporate so as to measure twenty-eight (28) fluidounces.

I have tried this with great satisfaction, and have also modified it by substituting pareira brava for the cubebs in some cases.

I hope to make some suggestions concerning other articles which my experience has indicated as improvements in existing preparations.

Albany, May 13, 1871.

[We know little of the composition of the so-called fluid extracts of buchu, now largely advertised as proprietary medicines, but believe the author's remarks to be correct, that some, at least, contain scarcely any buchu. However, we desire to remind the author that fluid extract of buchu, prepared according to the U. S. Pharmacopoeia, soon acquires a mint like odor.—EDITOR AMER. JOUR. PH.]

The American Journal of Pharmacy, Vol. XLIII, 1871, was edited by William Procter, Jr. (Issues 1-4) and John M. Maisch (Issues 5-12).