This section is from the book "Materia Medica And Therapeutics Inorganic Substances", by Charles D. F. Phillips. Also available from Amazon: Materia medica and therapeutics.
Dilute liquor ammoniae relieves the pain that follows the stings of venomous insects, wasps, etc.; it should be freely rubbed into the part, and given internally if there be tendency to collapse.
Professor Halford (Melbourne) has strongly advocated intravenous injection of ammonia in snake-bite, using 15 to 30 min. of the liquor, diluted with 3 or 4 parts of water, both as antidotal to the poison, and as a general stimulant. Many cases have recovered under this treatment, but there is yet much doubt as to how far it may be depended upon: in some of them it is probable that the bites were not of fatal character, and, when experiments were repeated with more accuracy, ammonia, even injected by Professor Halford, did not avert a fatal result (Medical Times, ii., 1876). It has also been found powerless against the bite of Indian snakes, which are more poisonous than those of Australia (Fayrer, Short, Brun-ton, Ewart): in some cases death followed even more quickly than usual after the injection (Report of Commission).
The intravenous injection of liq. ammoniae is a subject of much importance, and one that deserves more general attention than has yet been given to it: it is not free from risk and danger, especially if the large dose of 30 min. be used, but in suitable quantity it has powerfully stimulated the heart, and revived cases apparently in articulo mortis.