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..
A colorless, transparent liquid, having an excessively pungent odor, and very acrid and alkaline taste and a strongly alkaline reaction. Sp. gr. 0.901.
Ammonium chloride, sulphide and sulphate.
Dose, 3 to 6 m.; .20 to .40 c.c., well diluted.
Spirit of Ammonia. Contains 10 per cent., by weight, of the gas dissolved in Alcohol. Dose, 10 to 60 m.; .60 to 4.00 c.c.
Aqua Ammoniae. Ammonia Water. (10 per cent. by weight of the gas (Nh3= 17.01) dissolved in water).
The same as for Aqua Ammoniae Fortior.
Like, but less pungent than, the stronger solution. Sp. gr. 0.960.
Dose, 10 to 20 m.; .60 to 1.20 c.c., well diluted.
2. Spiritus Ammoniae Aromaticus, see Ammonium Carbonate.
A solution of ammonia produces rubefaction with a sensation of heat, and, if strong, a sensation of pain and burning. If the vapor is confined, it causes vesication.
Nose. - When inhaled, the vapor of ammonia is irritating to the nose and air passages, causing a pungent sensation and sneezing. The eyes and nose water. The pulse and respiration are reflexly accelerated. If very concentrated, it produces swelling and inflammation of the nose, glottis and respiratory tract.
Like other alkalies, given before meals, ammonia increases the flow of gastric juice; given after meals, it neutralizes it. It dilates the gastric vessels, and produces a feeling of warmth in the epigastrium. It reflexly stimulates the heart and respiration.
Its action on the blood is not known; but it is supposed to diminish its local liability to clot in cases of thrombosis, and to dissolve a clot which has already formed.
Ammonia causes a rise of blood-pressure with an increased pulse rate, due probably to stimulation of the accelerator mechanism.
It increases greatly the frequency of respiration, probably from stimulation of the respiratory centre in the medulla.
The brain is unaffected, and the nerves also, except for the tingling produced when a strong solution of ammonia is locally applied. Convulsions are often produced in animals poisoned by ammonia; these are certainly central, and are probably due to stimulation of the spinal cord.