Formula

H2C4H4O6.

Derivation

Tartaric Acid is obtained from " tartar " (a peculiar substance which concentrates on the inside of wine casks, being deposited during the process of fermentation), or from crude cream of tartar.

It is in the form of white or colorless crystals, irregular, six-sided prisms, and is soluble in water and alcohol, and wholly dissipated by heat.

Medical Properties And Action

It is refrigerant, and dissolved in water and sweetened, is a good substitute for lemonade.

In large doses it is an irritant poison, and when its internal use is followed by a red and dry tongue, it should be discontinued. It is often administered in the form of effervescing powders.

Therapeutic Uses

Internally it is employed as a refrigerant in inflammatory and febrile diseases, irritability of the stomach, nausea and vomiting, dyspepsia, and diseases attended with copious secretion of mucus, dysentery, etc., etc.

Dose

Of tartaric acid, gr. x to gr. xx, dissolved in water and sweetened.

Dental Uses

In combination with an equal quantity of chloride of lime, it is employed for bleaching discolored teeth.