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.
Source. - Made by heating nitrate of soda. 2NaN03= 2Na NO2 + O2.
Characters. - A white granular powder, deliquescent, with a cool saline taste, very soluble in water.
Impurities. - The nitrate, and caustic soda.
Dose. - 2 to 10 grains.
Nitrite of sodium acts upon the blood, the heart, and vessels like nitrite of amyl, only less suddenly and markedly, and for a much longer period of time. It has been used with success in heart disease, with recurrent attacks of painful angina; less successfully in epilepsy. Its depressant action on the central nervous system is more marked than that of the amyl compound; and it also paralyses the peripheral nerves and the muscles not only in this way, but through the blood.