This section is from the book "Dental Medicine. A Manual Of Dental Materia Medica And Therapeutics", by Ferdinand J. S. Gorgas. Also available from Amazon: Dental Medicine.
H2So4. Sp. gr., 1.843.
Sulphuric Acid is obtained by burning sulphur, mixed with one-eighth of its weight of nitre, over a stratum of water contained in a chamber lined with lead. It is a dense, colorless liquid, inodorous, with an acrid taste, oily consistence and very corrosive. On the addition of water, with which it unites in all proportions, there is an evolution of heat. In the concentrated form it is only used externally as a caustic. Being an acrid, corrosive poison, it causes death from asphyxia. The antidote is magnesia or chalk, or solution of soap, and mucilaginous drinks freely administered.
It is a powerful escharotic, and when applied to living tissue, the parts first become white, and subsequently assumes a brownish-black color. It is not used internally, on account of its corrosive action. It is considered to be one of the most effective caustics in the bites of rabid animals.
Acidum Sulpburicum Dilutum.
It is prepared by diluting sulphuric acid with distilled water 6o°, by adding more water Sp. gr., 1.094.
It is refrigerant, astringent and tonic. It is employed as a refrigerant in fevers; as an astringent for arresting hemorrhage and passive mucous discharges, and as a tonic to improve digestion. As it is very injurious to the teeth, the proper precautions should be observed, as in the case of all acids administered as medicines - such as alkaline gargles used before as well as after their introduction in the mouth, and the use of a glass tube or quill.
Diluted sulphuric acid is employed as an internal remedy in hemorrhage from the lungs, bowels and uterus, in calculous affections, certain skin diseases, diarrhoea, profuse perspiration of phthisis, in the advanced stages of typhus and typhoid fevers, scarlatina, lead poisoning, etc. Externally as a gargle and wash to ulcers.
Of diluted sulphuric acid, to three times a day, in water.
Acidum Sulpburicum Aromati-cum - Elixir of Vitriol.
Aromatic sulphuric acid is prepared by mixing sulphuric acid with rectified spirit Oij, and adding cinnamon and ginger It is a reddish-brown liquid, with an aromatic odor and a pleasant taste.
It is tonic and astringent, and is the most agreeable form of sulphuric acid for internal use.
Aromatic sulphuric acid is employed as a substitute for the diluted form in debility with night sweats, loss of appetite during convalescence from fevers, hemoptysis and other hemorrhages, and epidemic dysentery. Externally it is applied to carious bone, ulcers, in the treatment of pyorrhoea alveolaris, especially where there is necrosis of the alveolar walls, when it is applied on cotton packed in the pockets ; also in chronic alveolar abscesses. For such purposes it must be kept in the pockets, sinuses and abscesses for several hours in order to insure its full effects. It is also employed locally in cancrum oris and gangrene of the mouth, and largely diluted, it forms an efficient astringent mouth wash in simple stomatitis, etc.
Of aromatic sulphuric acid, to three times a day, in water.
The concentrated sulphuric acid is employed as a caustic in malignant ulcers, cancrum oris, gangrene, etc., in the form of a paste, made by mixing it with powdered sulphate of zinc. The concentrated sulphuric acid is also used in the dental laboratory to cleanse metal plates, preparatory to and after soldering, for which purpose it is generally diluted with one-third of water, its action being greater when it is in a warm state. The concentrated acid is also used in combination with nitric acid to reduce hemp paper to pyroxylin, in the preparation of the celluloid base.
The aromatic sulphuric acid is similar in its action to the diluted form, and is more agreeable for use about the mouth.
It is a valuable application in pyorrhoea alveolaris (Riggs' disease), and in caries and necrosis of the maxillary bones, as an injection or lotion, as it stimulates the parts to healthy action by favoring healthy granulation. It may be applied to parts about the teeth, in cases of recession of the gums and absorption of the processes, on a properly-shaped piece of orange wood. It is also valuable in alveolar abscesses as an injection, especially in sluggish cases, when the addition of a few drops of tincture of capsicum will prove serviceable. It has the power of dissolving the thin, carious portions of the bones, such as the margins of the alveolar cavities, and can be applied on cotton saturated with it and permitted to remain for several hours, when the parts should be perfectly cleansed with warm water. It is also employed as a gargle, properly diluted, in mercurial inflammation of the mouth and other forms of stomatitis, which do not yield to the influence of milder astringent washes. It is also employed in the treatment of aphthae and other ulcers of the mouth.
Dr. W. H. Atkinson speaks very favorably of the action of aromatic sulphuric acid upon morbid growths and ulcerating surfaces, especially in pockets where the connective tissue has been destroyed and deep chasms exist along the line of teeth, between the cementum and alveolar walls. After drying out such pockets with bibulous paper, drops of aromatic sulphuric acid, in full strength, should be dropped into the open mouth of the pocket until it stands full, on a level with the surface of the gum and teeth. This is repeated when the contents of the pocket are absorbed, again and again; after which the mouth is washed with a saturated solution of bicarbonate of soda in distilled water. After drying the pocket with bibulous paper, a paste of tannin and glycerine, smoothly spread upon several folds of the same paper, is laid over the surface, and the patient directed to use hydronaph-thol solution as a mouth wash, frequently during the day. The following day, the pocket is washed out with peroxide of hydrogen, fifteen volume medicinal, until it ceases to bubble; then repeat the application of the aromatic sulphuric acid in the same manner as first described. The hydronaphthol solution should be used frequently, and also a bichloride of mercury solution, 1.1000, three or four times a day, until there is no longer any evidence of pus when the peroxide is injected. Dr. J. R. Callahan recommends a 50 per cent aqueous solution of sulphuric acid for opening the canals of teeth where the roots are curved or the canals obscure, or obstructed by osseous growths; it also acts well in the case of putrescent pulps, as it destroys animal tissue by dehydration on account of its strong affinity for water.
For Mercurial and Ulcerative Stomatitis.
Acidi sulphurici . . . Decocti hordei....
Use as a gargle.
For Aphthae and other Ulcers of Mucous Membrane and Gums.
Acidi sulphurici . . .
To be applied with a camel-hair brush.
For Alveolar Pyorrhoea. Dr. A. W. HarLax.
Acidi sulphurici . .
Essence cinnamon .
Inject with a syringe I or 2 minims in each pocket if they are deep and sinuous, or carious ; repeat every fourth day.
For Diarrhaea During Dentition.
If the stools are serous and alkaline.
Dr. James \V. White.
For Carious Bone, Riggs' Disease, etc.
Acidi sulphurici aromat.............
To be used as an injection or lotion.