Purging Croton. Nat. Ord. Euphor-biaceae. Linn. Syst. Moncia Monadelphia. Hab. The East Indies, Burmah, &c.

Med. Prop. and Action. All parts of the plant possess medicinal properties: the root is a drastic cathartic; the wood is sudorific, and in large doses purgative; the dried leave* have similar properties, and are a reputed antidote to the bite of the cobra; but the seeds are the parts chiefly employed, either prepared as below, or as the source of Croton Oil (Oleum Crotonis, Oleum Tiglii). The seeds, in then native state, are powerfully poisonous; but when prepared as below, they are a safe and efficacious purgative. Boil the seeds thrice in milk; and after each boiling, dry them well, and carefully remove the outer shell and the embryo. If the latter is allowed to remain, it causes violent tormina and vomiting. To gr. lx. of the seeds thus prepared, add gr. lxx. of Catechu, and divide into two-grain pills; a few drops of Ol. Menth. Pip. may be advantageously added to the mass. This mode of preparation, first proposed by Dr. White, renders the seeds a valuable resource to the Indian practitioner; and Mr. Marshall justly observes, " To the field surgeon it is no unimportant recommendation that 500 doses may be contained in a small wafer-box, and purchased lor half a rupee." I have used these pills in some hundreds of cases, and have generally found their action uniform, producing five or six copious watery stools, and operating within two or three hours after being swallowed Any excessive operation is almost immediately checked by a draught of Lemon-juice. Mr. E. Wilson speaks highly of a tincture (bruised seeds j., Spirit. Rect. fiv.), as a local stimulating application in various skin diseases.

Therapeutic Uses. See Crotonis Oleum.

1010. In Erythema, Eczema, Lichen, Prurigo, Ichthyosis, and other obstinate Skin diseases, Mr. Erasmus "Wilson states that he has derived great benefit from a liniment composed of 3j. of the Tincture of Croton {ante), Spirit of Rosemary fj., and Rose Water fiij.

* Mem. del Med. Contemp, 1S42-3. Ainslie's Mat. Med., p. 294.

Diseases of the Skin, p. 177, et seq.