This section is from the "A Handbook of Useful Drugs" book, by State Medical Examining and Licensing Boards.
The bulb of Urginea maritima.. It is occasionally administered in the form of powder.
Action and Uses : The pharmacologic actions of squill resemble those of digitalis qualitatively, but the emetic action appears to be more prominent with squill, and this has led to its use as an emetic in the past, and it is still used as a nauseant, but it seems unwise to use a drug which affects the heart so powerfully when we have other nauseants, such as ipecac, which probably have less undesirable side actions
Squill is used frequently to promote diuresis, which it probably does after the manner of digitalis, through its action on the heart.
Squill appears to be absorbed slowly from the gastrointestinal tract, but its emetic effects appear to be due to its action on vomiting center in the medulla, and its diuretic effects to be secondary to its action on the heart. Hence it is probable that digitalis could always be used in its place to induce an increased secretion of urine. It is quite possible that the acetic acid plays some part in the usefulness of syrup of squill in expectorant mixtures. Squill is much used as a nauseant expectorant in the first stages of laryngitis, bronchitis, etc.
Dosage: 0.125 gm. or 2 grains.
One hundred c.c. represent 10 gm. of squill in approximately 70 per cent, alcohol.
Dosage: 1 c.c. or 15 minims.
A mixture of a diluted acetic acid extract of 5 per cent, squill with syrup.
Dosage: 2 c.c. or 30 minims.