Active Ingredients. - The rind of the fruit contains about 20 per cent, of tannin, with extractive and mucilaginous matters. The root-bark contains about the same proportion of tannic acid, some gallic acid, resin, mannite, and other less important substances. An acrid principle called punicine has also been detected in the fresh bark. The chemistry of pomegranate bark is still, however, very uncertain. It is doubtful whether the "granatine" of Landerer is an independent body, or merely some form of mannite; and punicine is a very imperfectly identified substance.

Physiological Action. - Decoction of pomegranate, taken in full doses, causes nausea, flatulence, vomiting, occasional cramps in the legs, and purging, the stools being generally of a light-yellow color; sometimes giddiness, faintness, dimness of vision, and a general numbness in the limbs; while the urine is often increased in quantity. The fresli bark of the root is believed to be the only part of the plant which produces these effects, though the flowers have a certain measure of reputation.

Therapeutic Action. - The bark of the root has obtained great celebrity as a specific in taenia. Two ounces of the fresh bark of the root are boiled in a pint and a half of water, till the quantity of fluid is reduced by one-half; and of this, when cold, about a third is taken at intervals of thirty minutes until finished. It occasionally produces a little nausea, but rarely fails to expel the worm.

Before the decoction is administered, vegetable broth and spare diet should be prescribed. The evening before the patient commences using it, he should take an ounce and a half or two ounces of castor-oil, combined with an equal quantity of syrup of lemons. The decoction itself should be taken as above described; and in an hour or two the worm will come away entire, wound into a ball, and in many places strongly knotted.

Sometimes the first and second doses are rejected from the stomach, owing to the nausea above mentioned. Should this be the case, the remainder of the medicine must nevertheless be taken; and should the worm not come away, similar doses must be given on the following day.

The bark should be dry, but fresh and bruised; the two ounces being macerated in water for twenty-four hours without heat, and then boiled gently, and reduced as before mentioned, when it only needs straining.

M. Bourgeoise, who has published his observations and experience in the Bibliotheque Medicate never found occasion to use a smaller quantity, but considered it desirable rather to increase the strength.

From my own experience, there is some uncertainty in the action of this drug; and it is said by some "to produce serious consequences."

The astringent properties are readily communicated to water, so that pomegranate bark is strongly recommended for employment as the basis of a gargle for relaxed gums and throat. It is also employed with advantage in chronic diarrhoea; also in menorrhagia, and in prolapsus uteri, prolapsus ani, etc.

In phthisis pulmonalis, again, during the profuse perspirations, and in the colliquative diarrhoea which is often so distressing an accompaniment towards the close, pomegranate rind is prescribed with considerable benefit.

To patients suffering from ardent fever, and its attendant thirst, the juice of the pomegranate, especially if tempered with sugar or honey, is particularly refreshing; many consider it preferable to that of the orange.

Preparation And Dose. - Decoctum granati radicis corticis; dose as above specified.