The fermented juice of the grape.
The wines recommended in medicine are the Sherry, Port, Claret, Catawba and Delaware (native), and for some purposes, Champagne. It is important that they should be pure; but as there is so much adulteration of what was at first the juice of the grape, not to speak of fictitious wines which possess none of the properties but the name, we, in this country, find it better to confine ourselves exclusively to native wine, the purity of which is undoubted.
Wine owes its medicinal properties not only to the alcohol which it contains, but also to the acid and extractive matter; the first rendering them stimulant, the second antiseptic and refrigerant, and the third nutritive.
Therapeutic Action.—As a remedy, wine is stimulant, tonic and antiseptic, its stimulant properties being less diffusible but more permanent than alcohol; hence the dose is more easily regulated and its effects more certain. It is also antiseptic and slightly refrigerant, properties which render it particularly applicable in ataxic fevers and other diseases in which there is vitiation of the fluids. In all diseases accompanied with much debility, such as cases of extensive ulceration and gangrene, and in the sinking stages of typhus and typhoid fevers, wine is not only one of the best additions to the bitter tonics, but it is a remedy on which alone there is much reliance. In the convalescence from acute diseases it will be found of much advantage in restoring the exhausted health and vigor.