SPHERE OF ACTION
Through the solar plexus, acts on the gastrointestinal canal in a peculiar and most powerful manner. Dr. T.R. Chambers says, It causes an enormous flow of watery serum from the first mucous membrane that absorbs it, If its vapor be drawn up into the nostrils for a short time, it is a powerful errhine, and is followed by the secretion of floods of water from the Schneiderian membrane. If it is dissolved in the oesophagus, it causes such a deluge of the gastric fluids, that the stomach cannot contain them and they are rejected by vomiting. If it succeeds in passing the pylorus, a choleraic diarrhoea gushes forth, stripping the membrane of its epithelium, just like its morbid prototype.
Elaterium is a most powerful drastic purgative, one grain producing excessive vomiting and purging. A lady in Boston took 4 two grain pills from a quack doctor, excessive vomiting took place and she died in thirty-six hours. On dissection, the mucous membrane of the stomach was found to be highly injected, the colon contracted, and all the intestines inflamed. The other viscera were healthy.
The medicinal dose in the old school is one-sixteenth to one-half a grain.
Cholera infantum, stools frequent and uniformly frothy, watery and of a pea-green color; 3rd cent.-A.E. SMALL, M.D.
John Manning has used it in forty cases of inflammation of the muscular structure of the neck of the bladder, with complete success.
We ought to have a better clinical account of this drug.