Externally and internally bismuth acts as a mild sedative and astringent. It is useful as a dry application in the first stages of bed-sores, as a dressing for burns and blisters, and may be satisfactorily used on small fresh wounds. It is given internally as an astringent, and in large quantities colors the faeces black or dark-gray.
A heavy white powder, odorless and almost tasteless, insoluble in water. The easiest way to give it is mixed in a little glycerin and diluted with milk or water; or it may be given in wine, or placed dry on the tongue.