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.
Elecampane, Scabwort, Inula Helenium. Official in Mexico and the Netherlands. Listed in the National Formulary.
Inulin, the active principle, or one of the proximates, is found in the roots of many of the Com-positae. Inulin possesses no marked activities. Helenin, another proximate, is said to be an alant camphor and is asserted to be a bactericide available in the treatment of tuberculosis, acting like creosote. It is stated that pure helenin inhibits the growth of the Bacillus tuberculosis when added to cultures in the proportion of 1 to 10,000. In order to secure definite results from inula, 5 cc. ampules are used by injection subdermally. The drug is under investigation in this direction, and results appear to be promising. See what was said under "Echinacea." It is said these injections of inula control night sweats in tuberculosis, decrease expectoration, and inhibit bacterial growth. Daily injections are given for from 10 to 20 days; their action is judged by the "Arneth count." If it shows no improvement it is useless to continue. Sufficient observations have not yet been made to enable me to speak definitely upon this use of inula.
Internally inula is diaphoretic, diuretic, and expectorant and is used in chronic bronchial affections marked by profuse expectoration. It is slow in action and must be used for some time in order to yield any definite results.
The infusion is used in doses of 1 to 2 fluidounces, the syrup in doses of 1 to 4 fluidrachms, the fl. in doses of 10 to 60 minims, and helenin 1-12 to 1/4 grain.