Colchicum Autumnale.

Botanical name: 

Syn.—Colchicum; Meadow saffron.
P. E.—Bulbs and seeds.
N. O.—Liliaceae.
N. H.—Europe.

Properties: Cathartic; sedative. In large doses powerful irritant poison.

Physiological action: In very large doses it will cause severe irritation and even inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract, followed by severe griping, vomiting, purging, spasms of the muscles, general collapse, and, in extreme cases, delirium, coma and even death. In large but less toxic doses it will cause irritation of the gastrointestinal tract, appetite becomes impaired, vomiting, pain in the abdomen of a colicky nature, with diarrhea of a mucous and even bloody nature. In moderate doses where there is a cathartic effect it is very depressing to the heart and general circulation, and for that reason should never be given in so large doses as to produce this effect.

Use: In chronic rheumatism and gout. It should never be given in doses to produce its cathartic effect, as it is too irritating, nor should it be continued any length of time on account of its depressing effect on the heart and nervous system. In rheumatic carditis or pericarditis in the sthenic stage it has proved to be superior to other remedies in. many cases.

The Materia Medica and Clinical Therapeutics, 1905, was written by Fred J. Petersen, M.D.