A gum resin obtained by incising the root of different species of Ferula, of Afghanistan. It contains a volatile oil, a resin, and gum. The oil is complex, but consists largely of the essential oil of garlic, to which it owes its unpleasant odor. The resin also yields sulphur.

Physiological Actions

Asafoetida has, in the stomach and alimentary canal, the stimulant and disinfectant action belonging to volatile oils and resins; but, while most others are pleasant to the taste, it is exceedingly nauseous and disagreeable. The mental influence of this nauseous impression, combined with its physiological action, renders asafoetida a nerve stimulant, antispasmodic, and calmative in hysterical conditions.

It is a carminative, and in enemata dispels gas, stops convulsions, and relieves constipation. It has some slight action as a stimulant and disinfectant expectorant. The volatile oil is excreted by the urine, perspiration, and breath.


Pilulae Asafoetidae. Pills Of Asafetida

Each pill contains 1/5 Gm. of the drug. Dose 2 pills.

Emulsum Asafoetidae. Emulsion Of Asafetida

Average dose, ℥ ss-15 mils.

Tinctura Asafoetidae. Tincture Of Asafetida

Strength, 20%. Dose,  v.-i mil.