The Garden or White Poppy. Nat. Ord. Papaveraceae. Linn. Syst. Polyandria Monogynia. Probably a native of Persia, but now extensively cultivated in various parts of Europe and Asia.
Med. Prop. and Action. Every part of the Poppy, excepting the seeds, contains a white, opaque, narcotic juice, which, on exposure to the air, assumes a brown colour, and has a strong peculiar odour. This is Opium. It chiefly abounds in the capsules, which are the only officinal parts. An extract (Ext. Papaveris) is obtained by boiling the capsules without the seeds, and evaporating the liquid. It is the Meconion of the ancient Greeks. It is narcotic, in doses of gr. ij. - x.; and when Opium is inadmissible, it is occasionally substituted for it. It is much milder than Opium, and is considered to produce less nausea and excitement. A syrup (Syr. Papaveris) is also prepared from the capsules, which is used as an adjunct to cough mixtures, &c. for adults, and as an anodyne and narcotic for children. For the latter purpose, the dose is gutt. x. - xxx.; but its varying strength renders its use objectionable and unsafe. The seeds yield a bland oil The capsules in decoction form a valuable anodyne fomentation in inflammations, nervous affections, spasms, &c.
Offic. Prep. of the Capsules: - 1. Decoctum Papaveris (Poppy Capsules bruised and freed from the seeds oz. iv.; Distilled Water Oiij. Boil for ten minutes and strain. The product should measure fi. oz. xxxij.).
xxxvj.; Boiling Distilled Water Oxx.; Rectified Spirit fl. oz. xvj.; Refined Sugar lb. iv. Macerate the Capsules in the Water for twelve hours. Evaporate and strain. Reduce the strained liquor to Oiij., and when cold add the Spirit. Mix and filter. Distil off the Spirit, evaporate the liquor to Oij., and add the Sugar. The product should weigh lb. vjss., and have the sp. gr. 1.320). Dose for an adult, fi. drm. j. - fl. drs. iv.
Therapeutic Uses. See Opium.