Oleum Tiglii. Croton Oil, official.

Croton Tiglium,


A fixed oil expressed from the seeds.

Habitat. India, Philippine Islands, (Ceylon, Borneo, Japan, Hindustan, Moluccas); cultivated.

Syn. Purging Croton, Croton Seeds, Grana Tiglii, Grana Molucca; 01. Tiglii; Br. Oleum Crotonis; Fr. Graine de Tilly ou des Moluque, Croton (Semence); Huile de Croton Tiglium; Ger. Granatin, Purgirkorner; Krotonol.

Cro'ton. L. fr. Gr.

Croton Tiglium Croton Oil Plant 501

dog-tick - i. e., from the resemblance of the seeds.

Tig'li-um. L. fr. Gr.

Croton Tiglium Croton Oil Plant 502

to have a thin stool - i. e., its medicinal property; croton plant seeds once called grana tiglii or grana tilli.


Plant. - Small tree, 4.5-6 M. (15-20°) high, trunk crooked; bark smooth, light brown, that of branches scarred from fallen leaves; leaves 10-12.5 Cm. (4-5') long, 5 Cm. (2') wide, glabrous, ovate, serrate, bright green, veins prominent beneath, petioles 2.5-5 Cm. (1-2') long; flowers, monoecious, racemes - staminate at upper part - pistillate at lower, greenish-white; fruit capsule, size of hazelnut, smooth, brownish-yellow, 3-celled (tricoccous), each cell 1-seeded, dehiscent. Seeds, 12 Mm. (1/2') long, 8 Mm. (1/3') wide, ovoid, caruncle inconspicuous, raphe fine, testa thin, roughish, not shiny, brittle, gray-brown, mottled or blackish, albumin oily; integuments 33-36 p. c, kernel 64-67 p. c.

Fig. 234.   Croton Tiglium.

Fig. 234. - Croton Tiglium.

Constituents. - Fixed oil 30-40 p. c. (from entire seeds), 50-55 p. c. (from kernels alone), proteids, albumin, etc.

Oleum Tiglii. Croton Oil. - This fixed oil obtained from the seeds, deprived of shell or testa, chiefly by expression, is a pale yellow, brownish-yellow, somewhat viscid and slightly fluorescent liquid, slight characteristic odor, mild, oily, afterward acrid, burning taste (must use great caution in tasting and handling, as it produces pustular eruptions when applied to the skin), soluble in ether, chloroform, fixed or volatile oils, slightly in alcohol (when fresh in 55-70 parts, when 3-4 years old in 20 parts), acid reaction, sp. gr. 0.943, congeals at - 16°C. (3.2°F.); contains glycerides of stearic, palmitic, myristic, lauric, and oleic acids, and of the volatile acids - acetic, butyric, formic, valeric, tiglic (tiglinic - oleic series), C5H8O2, also crotonol, C18H28O4. The purgative principle is insoluble in alcohol, the vesicating, croton-resin, C13H18O4, is soluble, and this latter, with several inactive oily acids, constitutes crotonolic (crotonoleic) acid, closely related to oleic and ricinoleic acids, which, together with its glyceride, is believed by some to be both purgative and vesicating; it is oily, readily decomposed, slightly acid, forms salts, soluble in alcohol, severe irritant to skin and mucous membranes; croton-resin is hard, brittle, pale yellow, soluble in alcohol, ether, chloroform, vesicating property destroyed by long boiling with potassium or sodium hydroxide solution. Tests: 1. Heat gently with 2 vols. of dehydrated alcohol - clear solution from which the oil separates, partially or completely on cooling. 2. Shake vigorously for a few minutes 2 Ml. (Cc.) with 1 Ml. (Cc.) each of fuming nitric acid and distilled water - does not solidify, partially or completely, on standing 24 hours (abs. of other non-drying oils). Should be kept dark, in small, well-stoppered bottles. Dose, e1/3-2 (.02-.13 Ml. (Cc.)). Adulterations. - Various fixed non-drying oils, castor oil, etc. Commercial. - Plant - all parts used in India from early times; root as a drastic cathartic in dropsy; wood diaphoretic (small doses), purgative, emetic (large doses); leaves, owing to acridity, when chewed and swallowed, irritant - inflaming lips, mouth, throat and alimentary canal. Seeds most active, having been introduced into Europe, 1630, as grana Molucca, grana tiglia, etc., and now imported mostly for the oil which is extracted by: 1, Expression; 2, Decoction; 3, Solution (benzin, carbon disulphide, chloroform, ether). The first method is preferred, and consists in crushing and expressing the seeds without integuments at moderate temperature, thereafter digesting the marc in alcohol at 54° C. (130° F.), again expressing and reclaiming alcohol. That extracted in India, from seeds roasted slightly to separate easily the shells (using only the kernels), is pale yellow, while that extracted in Europe (also from kernels alone but from which shells have been removed without heat) is reddish-brown, due to greater age of the seeds and the higher heat employed in expression.

Preparations. - (Unoff.) Collodium Tiglii, 10 p. c. Linimentum Tiglii (Crotonis), 13 p. c. Compound Liniment, 20 p. c. + oil of sassafras 20, oil of turpentine 20, olive oil 40. Emulsion. Pill. Tincture; or may give on lump-sugar.

Properties. - Powerful purgative, irritant poison, rubefacient, all due to local action; it is drastic, causing in 1-2 hours copious watery stools. Overdoses cause intense congestion of intestinal canal, vomiting,

Fig. 235.   Croton Tig lium: lateral and ventral view and longitudinal section of seed.

Fig. 235. - Croton Tig-lium: lateral and ventral view and longitudinal section of seed.

purging, possibly death from gastro-enteritis; an alkali increases its purgative effect, which is experienced often by even smelling, or rubbing the oil on the skin.

Uses. - Mania, coma, obstinate constipation, lead colic, taeniae, dropsies, dysentery, apoplexy, paralysis. Externally - rheumatism, gout, neuralgia, glandular swellings, pulmonary and laryngeal troubles, bronchitis, ovaritis, pleurisy. Can apply the oil directly to the surface by

Fig. 236.   Croton Eluleria.

Fig. 236. - Croton Eluleria.

rubbing until dry ej-2 (.06-. 13 Ml. (Cc.)), or the same quantity dissolved in either chloroform, olive oil, soap liniment, alcohol, ether, or oil of turpentine.

Poisoning: Have abdominal pain, great congestion of intestinal canal,'vomiting, purging (fluid stools), pulse small and thready, skin moist, face pinched, prostration, collapse, death possibly from gastroenteritis. Evacuate stomach, give milk, olive oil, mucilage, white of egg, gelatin, soup, opium, alcoholic liquids, artificial heat, hot poultice or fomentations to stomach, spirit of camphor, digitalis, warm stimulating baths.

Allied Plants: