Active Ingredients. - "Storax in the tear," the genuine liquid balsam of storax, is brownish-yellow, translucent, and of the consistence of honey. The odor is peculiar and agreeable; the taste is warm and aromatic. When pure, it is soluble in alcohol and in ether. The constituents are a volatile oil, cinnamic acid, styracine, and two peculiar resins, one hard, the other soft. The oil, called Styrole, C8H6, is a colorless, translucent, and very volatile liquid, with a burning taste, and yielding the odor of storax. It is soluble in alcohol and in ether; boils at about 295° F.; burns with a sooty flame; and is of sp. gr. 0.924. Cinnamic acid, C9H8O2 (a constituent also of the Balsams of Peru and Tolu), is colorless and crystalline; soluble in alcohol, and sparingly so in cold water. It is distinguished from benzoic acid by yielding the odor of oil of bitter almonds on being treated with a solution of chromic acid. The third important element of storax, styracine, C18H16O2, is a crystalline solid, sometimes obtained in a liquid state. It is soluble in ether, less so in alcohol, and insoluble in water.

Physiological Action. - In its operation, storax closely resembles the Balsams of Peru and Tolu.

Therapeutic Action. - Being stimulant and expectorant, storax induces all the usual effects of balsamic substances. The stimulant properties are manifested more particularly when it is employed in cases of irritation of the mucous surfaces. It has been used with advantage in affections of the respiratory organs, such as chronic bronchitis, in which it usefully promotes expectoration.

Chronic catarrhal affections of the genito-urinary membrane are also relieved by the use of storax. It has likewise been found serviceable in amenorrhoea.

Externally, storax has been used in the form of ointment, as a detergent for foul ulcers, appearing to mitigate the offensive character of the matter secreted.

Preparations And Dose. - Styrax praeparatus (B. Ph.), gr. v. - xxx. (.30 - 2.). Storax is an ingredient of the Tinctura Benzoini Comp.