Ointment of Tartarated Antimony. Unguentum Antimonii Potassio-Tartratis (Ph. L.) Tartar Emetic Ointment. Prep. Tartarated Antimony in fine powder, oz. 1/4. Simple Ointment, oz. j.
* Trans. of Pharm. 1851, p. 353. On the Venereal Disease, p. 91.
Medical Times, Oct. 4, 1851. § Ibid. Oct. 23, 1862.
Med. Prop. and Action. Counter-irritant, when rubbed on the skin to the amount of gr. xxx., once or twice daily. After a few applications, it gives rise to a pustular eruption. The extent of the eruption, the amount of attendant inflammation, and the length of time necessary for the production of these effects, differ in almost each individual; the thickness of the skin, the age of the patient, and the manner in which the ointment is applied, greatly influencing its appearance and character. If the ointment is only smeared over the skin, the eruption will be very slight and tardy in its appearance;' whereas, if it be steadily rubbed in for fifteen or twenty minutes daily, an extensive crop of pustules, with much inflammation, will be readily excited. When the skin is thick, and it is desirable to produce a considerable amount of irritation, it is advisable to employ friction with a warm flannel or flesh brush previous to applying the ointment. Dr. Stokes considers that the officinal ointment is of too great a strength, and states that from j. to 3ss. of Tartar Emetic, finely powdered, and thoroughly incorporated with j. of lard, is much more efficacious than the stronger formula. An aqueous solution of Tartar Emetic is preferred by some to the ointment. It is certainly more cleanly and convenient, and, if it will produce the same amount of irritation as the ointment, it may be advantageously substituted for it. Dr. Han-nay* strongly recommends the following solution, as being as efficacious as the ointment, and productive of less irritation: - ℞ Antim. P. Tart. 3j. Hyd. Bichloridi (P. L,.) gr. v., Aq. fj., Spt. Lavand. gutt. x., M. The addition of the Corrosive Sublimate is stated greatly to increase the efficacy of the Antimony. Dr. Hannay adds, that for twenty years he has constantly used this solution with benefit. Occasionally a pustular eruption on the scrotum and thighs appears in persons using this ointment, although applied to a distant part. It does not appear to depend altogether on the inadvertent application of the ointment to those parts. The points to be particularly observed in using this ointment are, 1, to take care that the salt is finely powdered; 2, to avoid, carefully, applying it to excoriations or wounds, as from leeches, &c. - gangrene has followed the non-observance of this point; 3, to suspend its use, if the salt becomes absorbed, and produces constitutional derangement; and, 4, not to apply it to very young children, unless it is urgently required.
Diseases of the Chest. In Acute Bronchitis, Dr. Williams advises an ointment composed of 1 part of Tartar Emetic, and 2 or 3 of lard The skin should be first well rubbed, or a mustard poultice applied, and immediately afterwards the ointment. In this way, a great amount of irritation will be produced in three or four hours. In Chronic Bronchitis, he prefers the following counter-irritant: - Solut. Saturat. Ant. Tart, fj., Potass Iod. 3ss., 01. Terebinth. exv. M.
285. In Asthma and Angina Pectoris, Tartar Emetic irritation is occasionally of great service. Amongst others, Lind relates several cases cured by its use.
286. In Hooping Cough, it has been employed by Autenrieth, Corsin,§ and others, with a view to mitigate the severity and frequency of the paroxysms. It is advised to be applied to the upper portion of the spine. It is too severe a remedy for very young children.
* Ed. Med. and Surg. Journ. Oct. 1843. Lib. of Med. vol. iii. p. 76.
Med. Chir. Rev. vol. iv. p. 49". § Ibid. No. xiv p. 215.
Dr. Rigby, by Tartar Emetic ointment well rubbed over the part. "When the eruption appears, a piece of lint is to be applied, until a slight degree of sloughing is produced. He states that he knows of no application so efficacious. In Ovarian Dropsy, it has been said to be occasionally serviceable.
Halen* strongly advises counter-irritation by Tartar Emetic ointment to the scalp. It is to be repeated every two hours until pustules are established. It occasionally induces gangrene, and should therefore be cautiously employed. At the same time, he advises bleeding and calomel. The space for counter-irritation should be about an inch and a half. He mentions some cases in which the efficacy of this treatment was very remarkable, and adds that, by the above means, he has saved 14 cases in an appa-rently hopeless state of coma.
Counter-irritation by Tartar Emetic is often of the highest service in these affections. It requires to be steadily persevered in. Tartar Emetic may be given internally, at the same time. In Chronic Inflammation of the Joints, it also proves highly serviceable.