Potassium Phosphate. Potassii Phosphas.

Common Name

Phosphate of Potash.

Chemical Properties

Formula, K2 H P O4. Prepared by mixing aqueous phosphoric acid with a sufficient quantity of potash, hydrate or carbonate, until the reaction is slightly alkaline, and evaporating. It crystallizes with difficulty. It is very deliquescent; it is freely soluble in water and insoluble in alcohol.


It is prepared by trituration, as directed under Class VII, American Pharmacopoeia.

Physiologico-Chemical Data

Kali phos. is a constituent of all animal fluids and tissues, notably of the brain, nerves, muscles and blood-cells. All tissue-forming substances retain it with the greatest obstinacy, all nutritious fluids contain it, hence we may well conclude that it is indispensable to the formation of tissues. We know also that the oxidation processes, the change of gases in the respiration, and other chemical transformations in the blood, as well as the saponifying of the fat and its further oxidation, are brought about by the presence of the alkalies, and chiefly by the presence of Kali phos. This alkaline reaction is essential to a large number of vital processes taking place in the interior, and is present, without exception, in all the animal fluids which are actually contained in the circulating system, or in the closed cavities of the body. (Dalton.) It is found that the nerves retain their vital properties for a long time and very completely in a solution of this salt. By the diminution of the excretion of Kali phos. in the urine, conditions are produced within the organism which may present many-sided resistance to the typhus-decomposing element, as well as to the extension of the typhus process. (Grauvogl.) Kali phos. is an antiseptic and hinders the decay of tissues.

Adynamia and decay are the characteristic states of Kali phos.

The most important discovery of Liebig, that phosphate of potash is predominant in the serum of the muscles and chloride of sodium in the circulating blood, we have often made great use of, particularly with regard to preferring the one or the other nourishment. (Hering.) A disturbance of the Kali. phos. molecules has for its results:

1. In the mental sphere such conditions as bashfulness, anxiety, fear, tearfulness, suspicion, homesickness, weakness of memory, depression, etc.

2. In the vaso-motor nerves: Pulse at first small and frequent, later retardation.

3. In sensory nerves: Pains with paralytic sensation.

4. In motor nerves: Muscular and nerve prostration to paralysis.

5. Trophic fibres of sympathetic nerve: Retardation of nutrition to complete cessation within a circumscribed cellular domain, hence softening and degeneration of involved nerves.

General Action

Conditions arising from want of nerve power, as prostration, exertion, loss of mental vigor, depression. In general, a sluggish condition of mind, which will act if aroused; also an exhausted mental condition after mental exertion or great strain. It corresponds to the hosts of conditions known as neurasthenia, in which field it has won its greatest laurels. It is a restorative in muscular debility following acute diseases, myalgia and wasting of muscular tissue, all dependent upon impaired innervation. Atrophic condition in old people. In cases arising from rapid decomposition of the blood corpuscles and muscle juice, such as hemorrhages of a septic nature, scorbutus, stomatitis, gangrenous angina, phagedenic chancre, offensive, carrion-like diarrhoea, adynamic or typhoid conditions, etc.

Guiding Symptoms And Characteristic Indications Mental Symptoms

Anxiety, nervous dread without any special cause, gloomy moods, fancies, looks on the dark side of everything, dark forebodings. Great despondency about business and pecuniary affairs. Indisposition to mix with people. Disinclined to converse. Brain-fag; from overwork. Depressed spirits, general irritability, or great impatience. Loss of memory, omits letters or words in writing, uses wrong words, confusion of ideas. Dread of and oversensitiveness to noise. Dulness, want of energy, the slightest labor seems a heavy task. Undecided, captious, changeable. Rambling talk while wide awake (Natr. mur.) Effects of fright. After-effects of grief. Hallucinations and illusions of senses. Homesickness, haunted by visions of the past and longing after them. Hysteria from sudden emotions, fits of laughter and crying, false impressions. Insanity, mania and other mental derangements. Profound hypochondria and melancholia. Puerperal mania. Sighing depression. Shyness, excessive blushing from emotional sensitiveness. Stupor and low delirium. Whining and fretful disposition. Hysterical yawning. Delirium tremens, fear, sleeplessness, restlessness and suspicion, rambling talk. Grasping at imaginary objects. Mental aberrations. Softening of the brain, early stage, starting on being touched.

Mental symptoms in children: Cross and ill tempered, fretful, frightened, screaming, whining. Night terrors. Shyness and excessive blushing. Somnambulism. Very nervous, starts at the slightest sound. Talks while asleep. Wants to be carried while awake from room to room. Wakes easily. (Hol-brook).

Head And Scalp

Vertigo on rising, from lying, on standing up, from sitting and when looking upward. Vertigo and giddiness from nervous exhaustion and weakness, Cerebral anaemia. Concussion of the brain. Asthenic conditions. Headache, nervous, sensitive to noise, confusion. Headache of students and those worn out by fatigue. Headaches are relieved by gentle motion. Pains and weight in the back of the head, and across the eyes, better while eating, with feeling of weariness and exhaustion, inability for thought and characteristic mental symptoms. Headache with weary, empty, gone feeling at stomach. Menstrual headache with hunger. Neuralgic headache, humming in the ears, with feeling of inability to remain up, yet better under cheerful excitement; tearful mood, better when eating. Water on the brain. Itching of scalp. Back or head sore as if hair was pulled. Severe pain in the left mastoid; worse on motion and in open air.