Ipecacuanha is the dried root of Cephaclis Ipecacuanha, a perennial herb native to Brazil.


Central Nervous System. - No direct action known. In frogs a central paralysis is produced; in animals, a depression of the motor side of the cord.

Muscular System. - Weakened secondarily.

Respiration. - No effect.

Heart is slightly slowed, either reflexly or by direct action.

Blood-pressure is lowered in large doses from splanchnic relaxation, whether centric or reflex is uncertain.

Alimentary Tract. - Much irritated by local effect on mucosa.

Secretory glands are reflexly and directly stimulated. The gastro-intestinal glands are made more active.

Metabolism. - No effect.

Temperature. - Unchanged.

Absorption is very slow, even when retained.

Excretion is via kidneys and gastro-intestinal mucosa.

Local Action. - Irritant.





Pulvis Ipecacuanhae ...

0.008 Gm.

0.06 Gm.

1 Gm.

2 to 4 Gm.


1 mil

15 mils

Fluidextractum "

0.05 mil

1 mil

Pulvis Ipecacuanhae et Opii (each 10%), 0.5 Gm.


Small Doses.

Increased secretion of intestinal and bronchial glands. Moderate diaphoresis.

Large Doses.

Copious secretion of saliva. Nausea. Vomiting.

Usually no depression unless dose is so large as to cause repeated vomiting.


Ipecac is used in small doses as an antiemetic, a diaphoretic, and expectorant. In larger doses it becomes a very satisfactory emetic. In still larger doses, sometimes combined with laudanum to lessen or prevent vomiting, it is used as a specific in amoebic dysentery. Lately, its active principle, emetine, has been recommended for hypodermic use.


Ipecacuanha 82

Crimson = stimulation. Green = irritation