The Plantain Tree. Nat. Ord. Musaceae. Linn. Syst. Pentandria Monogynia. The fruit of this tree, which abounds in most tropical countries, is an invaluable article of food; containing from 60 to 68 per cent. of starch, meal, &c. It is slightly laxative.
Medical Uses. The leaves of the Plantain are highly valuable as a substitute for Spermaceti Ointment in dressing blisters. I have seen some hundreds of cases in which they have been thus employed, and have never observed any ill consequences arise from their use; on the contrary, the blistered surfaces have healed rapidly and healthily in an average of about five days. For the first two days, the upper smooth side should be placed next to the skin, and subsequently the under side, until the surface has healed. They are in common use in the native regiments in India.
* Clin. Lect., vol. ii. p. 535.