This section is from the book "Materia Medica Pharmacy, Pharmacology And Therapeutics", by W. Hale White. Also available from Amazon: Materia Medica Pharmacy, Pharmacology And Therapeutics..
The fruit of Elettaria repens (Sonnrat) Baillon (nat. ord. Scitamineae).
Malabar; cultivated in India.
Ovoid or oblong, from 10 to 15 mm. long, obtusely triangular, rounded at the base, beaked, longitudinally striate; of a pale buff color, three-celled, with a thin, leathery, nearly tasteless pericarp, and a central placenta. The seeds are about 4 mm. long, reddish-brown, angular, rugose, depressed at the hilum, surrounded by a thin, membranous arillus, and have an agreeable odor and a pungent, aromatic taste.
The chief constituents are - (1) A volatile oil, 4 to 5 per cent., which contains a terpene, C10H16, called Terpinene. (2) A fixed oil, 10 to 11 per cent. The pericarp is medicinally inactive.
Cardamom is contained in Extractum Colocynthidis Compositum, Pulvis Aromaticus, Tinctura Gentianae Composita, Tinctura Rhei, and Tinctura Rhei Dulcis.
Dose, 10 to 15 gr.; .60 to 1.00 gm.
Dose, 1 to 2 fl. dr.; 4. to 8. c.c.
Dose, 2 to 4 fl. dr.; 8. to 15. c.c.
Cardamom, because of its volatile oil, acts like cloves or pepper; therefore it is carminative and stomachic. As it has a pleasant taste, and the compound tincture is of a red color, it is much used as a coloring and flavoring agent. A good flavoring carminative is the Tinctura Carminativa of the British Pharmaceutical Conference. It contains cardamom, 6; tincture of ginger, 6; oil of cinnamom, oil of caraway, oil of cloves, of each, 1; rectified spirit to 96. Dose, 2 to 10 minims .12 to