This section is from the book "Botanic Drugs Their Materia Medica, Pharmacology and Therapeutics", by Thomas S. Blair. Also available from Amazon: Botanic Drugs, Their Materia Medica, Pharmacology and Therapeutics.
Euphorbia resinifera, official nearly all over the world except in the U. S. The Euphorbiaceae, Spurge, E. corollata and E. ipecacuanhae growing in the U. S., possess active emeto-cathartic properties. Also our stillingia is allied thereto.
Euphorbia resinifera has a resinous juice, and it is used as a rubefacient and vesicant; it is too irritant for internal administration.
Euphorbia pilulifera, Pill-bearing Spurge, is said to influence the respiratory center. It has been urged in the treatment of asthma and hay fever, principally by the Homeopathists. Use fl. in 10- to 15-minim doses. Some contend for much smaller doses. Sometimes it has aided cases of spasmodic asthma under my care; but usually it has failed. It has wholly failed in hay fever.
Euphorbia corollata is used in 1- to 5-minim doses fl. in atonic dyspepsia. The smaller dose may aid such cases in the same way that very small dosage of ipecac sometimes does. E. ipecacuanhae is used similarly to E. corollata. E. heterodoxa is, with salicylic acid, the secret "cancer cure" of certain quacks.