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.
Kava-Kava, Piper Methysticum. This agent slows the pulse, produces vigorous cardiac contraction, inhibits reflex action, is sudorific, and is somewhat anesthetic. In large doses it is employed by the natives of the South Sea Islands as the main ingredient of a peculiar and slightly intoxicating beverage. Very large doses are not employed in medicine. In moderate doses (f.e. or ec. tr., 5 to 20 I ; solid extract, 2 to 5 gr.) its influence upon the mucous membranes of the genito-urinary apparatus makes it highly useful in chronic gonorrhea, gleet, chronic catarrh of the bladder, and nocturnal enuresis. Incidentally, this drug markedly stimulates the appetite and improves digestion. This fact makes it of peculiar value in many genito-urinary cases. It is an agent worthy of more general employment.