Acidum Tartaricum. 2 HO, C8H4O10. It is obtained from the Acid Tartrate of Potash.

Med. Prop. and Action. Refrigerant. Although cheaper, and consequently more used, than Citric Acid, it is inferior to it in many respects, being more apt to disorder the digestive organs, to produce colic, and to purge. In large doses it acts as an irritant poison. One ounce dissolved in half a pint of water caused violent inflammation of the alimentary canal and death in nine days || When its employment in medicinal doses is followed by a red and dry tongue, it ought to be discontinued. (Dr. Thompson.¶) It is said by Annesley to be the best artificial solvent of mucus, and may be advantageously given when this exists largely in the bowels. It is often given in the form of " effervescing powders" (SodAe Bicarb. gr. xxx., Acid. Tart. gr. xxv.). If Bicarbonate of Potash be added to a solution of Tartaric Acid, the Bitartrate of Potash is precipitated; but if the acid be added to the Bicarbonate, it may be added to the point of saturation and remain perfectly soluble (Squire).

Dose, gr x. - gr. xx., dissolved in water and sweetened.

Tncompatibles. Nitric and Sulphuric Acids; Alkalies and their Carbonates; the salts of Potash, Lime, Lead, and Silver; most earths, and their Carbonates.

2727. Therapeutic Uses

In inflammatory and febrile Diseases, an agreeable refrigerant drink is made by diluting the acid largely with water, and sweetening with sugar to the taste. If it cause nervous irritability, or a dry red tongue, it should be discontinued {ante).

2728. In Irritability of the Stomach, Nausea, Vomiting, &c., effervescing draughts {ante) are often very effectual in allaying the morbid irritation. A few drops of T. Opii or Acid. Hydrocyan. or T. Calumb. may be advantageously added. Its efficacy is partly due to the generation of Carbonic Acid gas, resulting from the mixture.

* Lectures, vol. ii. p. 548. Cyc. Pract. Med., vol. iv. p. 335. Traitsdela Malad. Scroph., p.275. § On Dysmenorrha, p. 59.

|| Taylor's Medical Jurisprudence, 1852, p. 52. ¶ Cyc. Pract. Med., vol. iii. p. 594.

2729. In Dyspepsia and other Diseases, attended with copious secretion of mucus, Tartaric Acid, either alone or combined with a base, particularly the Bitartrate of Potash, is stated by Mr. Morgan,* of Glasgow, to be of the highest service. It has been advised in Dysentery.