Wed. Prop. and Action. In doses of gr. xv. - gr. lx., it is a safe and efficient aperient, particularly when combined with Rhubarb (Pot. Sulph. gr. xxx. - gr. lx., Pulv. Rhei gr. v. - x.), but in large doses, as oz. j. - oz ij., it appears to act as a violent irritant; so much so, that death has followed its incautious use. Mr. Mowbray states that it is much employed in France, as a popular abortive, and he quotes several instances in which it produced severe symptoms, and even death. In one case he found 3ij. act powerfully; and in another, 3iv. administered to a lady after her confinement, produced all the effects of an irritant poison. The French physicians attribute to this salt the power of repressing the secretion of milk.
Offic. Prep. Pulvis IpecacuanhAe cum Opio. (See art Pulv. Ipecac. cum Opio.)
Dose, gr. x. - gr. lx.
Incompatible*. Tartaric Acid; Acetate and Diacetate of Lead; the Chlorides of Barium and Calcium.
In Dyspeptic and Hepatic Affections, the Sulphate of Potash is a safe and efficient aperient, acting in most cases mildly, and without hypercatharsis. It may be advantageously combined with rhubarb or aloes. Dr. A. T. Thompson says that he has found it more useful than the other saline purgatives, in Jaundice and Dyspeptic Affections.
2245. In Gastric Remittent Fever, when it assumes a chronic form, the Sulphate of Potash is advised by Denman, Underwood, Butler, and Pemberton. They agree in considering that it is peculiarly adapted to meet the indications, by relieving the fever, improving the secretions, and quickening the action of the bowels and kidneys. The quantity must, of course, depend upon the age and strength of the patient; but from two to three evacuations will be desirable daily. It may be combined with, or followed by rhubarb or other mild aperients. (Dr. Locock.*)
* Med. Times, Feb. 4, 1854. Med. Gaz., vol xxxiii. p. 54.
Dispensatory, p. 1100.
2246. In Albuminuria, the neutral saline purgatives, particularly the Sulphate of Potash, are advised by Dr. Heaton. They should be given, he observes, in rather a concentrated solution, which then determines an endosmosis of the watery part of the blood into the intestine from the blood-vessels, which, thus deprived of their natural tension, become actively absorbent of the dropsical effusion which they had before allowed to escape. But if the saline be given much diluted, or followed by much drink, it then enters the blood and acts upon the kidneys.