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.
Saw Palmetto, Serenoa serrulata. Official only in the U. S. Its activities are due to an aromatic oil which is excreted mainly by the mucous membranes, and as the drug is a sedative diuretic the combined action is highly favorable in chronic mucous membrane troubles, such as catarrhal bronchitis, chronic cough in the aged, bronchial asthma, chronic cystitis, and old prostatic involvements. The drug has a reputation in senile hypertrophy of the prostate; but local attention should not be neglected.
The activities of saw palmetto have been overstated; but it is, within its proper indications, a fairly satisfactory drug if 30-minim doses fl. are continued for a long time. It cooperates nicely with sandalwood oil.