Active Ingredients. - Angustura has a strong, peculiar, and slightly offensive odor, with an abiding, bitter, and aromatic taste which is said to produce salivation. It yields its properties to water and alcohol; these depending upon the presence of a bitter, crystallizable principle called angusturine, or cusparine; a hard and bitter resin; a soft and balsamic resin; volatile oil; gum and woody fibre. The cusparine exists in tetrahedral crystals; is slightly soluble in water; more so in alcohol, acids, and alkalies; insoluble in volatile oils and ether. Its composition is unknown; and from the experiments of Saladin it would appear to have little activity.

The hard resin is brown, soluble in potash, alcohol, and acetic ether, insoluble in oil of turpentine and sulphuric ether. The soft resin is slightly acrid, greenish-yellow, soluble in alcohol, ether, oil of turpentine, and oil of almonds; insoluble in solution of potash.

The volatile oil is obtained by the distillation of the bark with water. It retains the peculiar odor of the bark, and in taste is acrid; it is lighter than water, and is of a yellowish-white color.

Physiological Action. - In its operation, angustura is said to resemble cascarilla; but the affinity is nearer to that of the pure bitters, and the stimulating effects are less decided. Administered in large doses, it induces nausea, followed by flatulence and purging. Observations are still wanting, however, both as to its absolute properties and its relative ones; and meantime it is safest, perhaps, to regard this drug as an aromatic tonic and stomachic, adapted for substitution when there are objections to cascarilla, cinchona, or calumba, and especially for use in the tropics.

Therapeutic Action. - Dr. Hancock, who had excellent opportunities for watching the effects of angustura, declares it adapted to the worst forms of bilious fevers. All fevers of an adynamic type, especially when accompanied by severe stomach disorders, are considered amenable to it; as are likewise most of the ordinary kinds of muscular debility, and such forms of dyspepsia and anorexia as are referable to similar causes.

In Diarrhoea and Dysentery, when chronic, angustura may likewise be employed with great benefit to the patient; and in the later stages of these disorders, when there is often a considerable amount of mucous discharge, though not chronic, its efficacy again seems unquestionable.

Preparations and Dose. - Angustura, gr. x. - xxx. (.65 - 2.); Infus. Angusturae,

Angustura Or Cusparia Bark Galipea Cusparia 16

- j. (15. - 30.).