Phytolacca Fruit. Synonym. - Poke Berry. The fruit of Phytolacca decandra Linne (nat. ord. Phytolaccaceae.)

Habitat

North America; naturalized in Europe.

Characters

A depressed globular, dark purple compound berry, about 8 mm. in diameter, composed of ten carpels, each containing one lenticular, black seed; juice purplish red; inodorous; taste sweet, slightly acrid.

Constituents. - (1) Phytolaccin. (2) Phytolaccic Acid. (3) Sugar. (4) Gum.

Dose, 5 to 30 gr.; .30 to 2.00 gm.

Phytolaccae Radix. Phytolacca Root. Poke Root

Synonym. - Poke Root. The root of Phytolacca decandra Linne (nat. ord. Phytolaccaceae).

Characters

Large, conical, branched and fleshy; mostly in transverse or longitudinal slices, wrinkled, grayish, hard; fracture fibrous, the wood-bundles in several distinct, concentric circles; inodorous; taste sweetish and acrid.

Constituents. - (1) Resin. (2) Probably a Glucoside. (3) A volatile acid.

Dose, 1 to 5 gr.; .06 to .30 gm.

Preparation

Extractum Phytolaccae Radicis Fluidum. - Fluid Extract of

Phytolacca Root. By maceration and percolation with Alcohol and water, and evaporation.

Dose, 5 to 30 m.; .30 to 2.00 c.c.

Action And Uses Of Phytolacca

Phytolacca is used as a laxative, and in large doses it possesses also some narcotic properties. Recently a preparation made from the berries has been used to reduce adipose tissue.