This section is from the book "Materia Medica And Therapeutics: An Introduction to the National Treatment of Disease", by John Mitchell Bruce. Also available from Amazon: The pharmacology and therapeutics of the materia medica.
Mastiche - Mastich. - A resinous exudation ob-tained by incision from the stem of Pistacia lentiscus. Produced in the island of Scio.
Characters. - Small irregular yellowish tears, brittle, he-coming soft and ductile when chewed, having a faint agreeable odour.
Substances resembling mastich: Acacia, ammoniacum, gal-banum, which are larger, rougher, and more opaque.
Composition. - Mastich consists of 80 or 90 per cent. of a resin, mastichic acid, soluble in alcohol; of a smaller quantity of another resin, masticin, soluble in ether, but insoluble in alcohol; and of a trace of volatile oil.
Mastich was formerly used much like other oleo-resins, but its application is now confined to dentistry, where it is em-ployed as a temporary stopping for carious teeth. A solution in ether or collodion is applied on cotton wool with oil of cloves or cinnamon, and remains as a firm plug by evaporation of the solvent.