This section is from the book "A Practitioner's Handbook Of Materia Medica And Therapeutics", by Thos. S. Blair. Also available from Amazon: A Practitioner's handbook of Materia Medica and Therapeutics.
Hamamelis, Witch Hazel. A valuable astringent and antiseptic. The fluidextract of the leaves is probably its most available form for internal administration. The average dose is 30 I, but 5 to 10 I. is quite sufficient if for continued administration. The Aqua Hamamelidis is given in teaspoonful doses. The ec. tr. and distilled extract are similar. Wood alcohol is used in the making up of some cheap extracts and is to be strictly avoided.
Therapeutically, it is indicated in bleeding from small vessels where their walls are at fault, and especially in case of slow inflammatory changes in venous tissues and in varicosities, purpura, phlegmonous ulcerations, oozing hemorrhages, and relaxed venous states generally. In sore throat with dark-colored membranes, spongy gums, catarrh with slight hemorrhage, hemorrhoids with bleeding and soreness, too frequent menstruation with soreness in abdomen, and in muscular soreness with a bruised feeling this agent is indicated. Externally, the distilled extract is used in a host of minor affections, and is peculiarly effective when applied to the rectal tissues, the vaginal walls, sore breasts, and superficial burns. Applied hot, it is of marked utility in the local and pelvic soreness following a hard confinement. Ten grains of menthol to 4 fluidounces of distilled extract witch hazel is recommended by Ellingwood as an application to relieve the pain of burns. The rectal suppositories of witch hazel and buckeye have a large range of usefulness.
This agent is much valued by homeopathic physicians, who insist that it acts best in most cases by using it externally and internally at the same time, giving 10 I. doses of the tincture and applying the distilled extract in 25% solution or the tincture in full strength. Some of the older homeopaths still employ it in dilutions or "potencies."