Gallic Acid is obtained from galls by exposing the powder, in water, to the action of the air, at a temperature of between 6o° and 700 F., when the acid is deposited in the form of small, silky, almost colorless crystals, possessing a slightly acid and astringent taste. Gallic acid is slightly soluble in cold water, and freely soluble in hot water, glycerine or alcohol.

Galls, from which gallic acid is prepared, are the excrescences caused by the punctures and deposited ova of a hymenopterous insect on the twigs of the gall oak Quercus Infectoria).


Galls are obtained from Asia Minor and Persia.

Medical Properties And Action Of Galls

Powerfully astringent, this property depending upon the presence of tannic and gallic acids, as they contain 35 per cent. of tannic and 5 per cent of gallic acids. The powder, which is obtained from the small, round, dark-blue or lead-colored excrescences, is of a light yellowish-gray color, inodorous and of a bitter taste.

Galls are used in various forms, such as powder, tincture, infusion, ointment, etc.

Therapeutic Uses

Galls are employed in the treatment of chronic diarrhoea, dysentery, leuchorrhoea, chronic gonorrhoea and gleet, diseases of the uterus and intermittent fevers, and externally in hemmorrhagic disorders, hemorrhoids, relaxation of uvula, hypertrophy of the tonsils, etc.

Gallic acid is given directly for internal hemorrhage.


Of powdered galls, gr. x to gr. xx. The ointment is composed of: powdered galls, gr. lxxx ; benzoated lard, Dose 476 ; powdered opium, gr. xxxij.

Medical Properties And Action

Gallic acid is a powerful astringent for arresting hemorrhage in which the bleeding vessels must be reached through the circulation. It is also a valuable styptic in cases of hemorrhage depending on a hemorrhagic diathesis, and in the form of a gargle it is very serviceable in acute inflammations of mucous membranes. It is also a strongly deodorizing agent; and, like tannic acid, it is capable of taking oxygen from the blood globules. Internally employed it produces constipation, which may be prevented by an occasional aperient. Although it is weaker than tannic acid, yet its properties are very similar. It is supposed to be converted into tannic acid in the blood.

Therapeutic Uses

Gallic acid is employed in the treatment of hemorrhagic diseases, in their chronic stages especially, such as hemoptysis, hemorrhage from ulcer of the stomach, hematem-esis and hematuria, atonic menorrhagia; also, for the profuse perspirations and excessive expectoration of phthisis, for albuminuria, dyspepsia, chronic diarrhoea and gastric irritation in children, gonorrhoea, gleet, etc. It is also administered in cases of alveolar hemorrhage.


Of gallic acid, gr. ij to gr. v, in pill, every two or three hours.

Glycerite of gallic acid (Glyceritum Acidi Gallici), for external use, is composed of gallic acid, Dose 478 ; glycerine,

Ointment of galls ( Unguentum Gallae) is composed of galls in fine powder, ; lard, 420 grains.

Dental Uses

Powdered gall is useful as a styptic in superficial hemorrhages from the gums and mucous membrane; also in inflamed and ulcerated condition of mucous membrane, and in relaxation of the uvula. Gallic acid, in the form of a gargle, is employed in acute inflammations of mucous membrane, as astringent and antiseptic, and in hemorrhages from mucous surfaces depending upon a hemorrhagic diathesis.

For hemorrhage following the extraction of teeth, Dr. Bartholomew claims that one teaspoonful of gallic acid in a glass of water, internally administered, never fails.

Dental Formulae

For Acute Tonsilitis and Inflammation of the Mucous Membrane of the Mouth.

Acidi xl

Liq. sodae chlorinate . 3 ij

Glycerini......3 ij

Aquae destillatae . . . 3 viij. M. Sign a. - To be used as an antiseptic and astringent gargle.

Dental Formulae 481

For Relaxation of Uvula and Hypertrophy of Tonsils.

Infusi gallae.....3 vj xl. M.


Use as a gargle.

Signa 482

An Internal Astringent in Hemorrhagic Affections.

Acidi gallici.....3j

Glycerini.......3 iv.

Aquae destillatae . . . . 3 vj. M. SlGna. - Take 3j as a dose.

Signa 483

For Alveolar Hemorrhage. Dr. C. W. Glassington.

Acidi xx.

Acidi sulphurici .... 3j.

Tinct. opii......3 i ss.

Aquae........3 vj.


Two tablespoonfuls every 2 hours until bleeding stops.

An Internal Astringent for Dental


Otto Arnold.

Acidi gallici.....

Aquae cinnamon .... Signa. - .A teaspoonful every hour until bleeding is arrested.

Signa 484Signa 485

For an Astringent Gargle or Lotion.

Pulveris gallae . .

Aquae.......Oj. M.


As a gargle or lotion in inflamed or ulcerated condition of mucous membrane and gums.

Signa 486Signa 487