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Potassium Acetate,-requires Canada Balsam to secure its stability in pill form. Potassium Iodide is best manipulated by rubbing into a smooth paste with a very little water, then adding a small quantity of Liquorice powder. Potassium Permanganate should be worked up with kaolin and a very little water. Resin Cerate, Soft and Hard Paraffin and Cacao butter are also used as its excipients. Quinine,-requires very clean hands and tools, and a colorless excipient, as Glycerin or Glucose, to make a nice-looking pill. If one part of Tartaric Acid is added to four of the Quinine salt, the mass will be less likely to crumble and will be of less bulk. Sulphate of Quinine may be made into small and soluble pills by simply triturating it with Aromatic Sulphuric Acid miij to each 5 grains of the salt. The moulding into pills should be done at the moment when the mass has begun to dry. A drop of syrup or honey, added at this time, will prevent the too rapid hardening of the mass.
Rhubarb,-in powder makes a good mass with one-fifth of its weight of Glycerin; but Soap is the excipient ordered for the official Pilula Rhei.
SUBSTANCES UNSUITED to the pilular form are:
Those requiring large doses, and those which are volatile.
except those having a very small dose, as Croton Oil. Deliquescent Salts, unless intended to be used immediately. Efflorescent Salts, unless deprived of their water of crystallization.
COATED PILLS are manufactured upon a large scale by the large drug houses, extensive machinery being employed for the purpose. The coating material used is either Sugar or Gelatin. The U. S. Pharmacopoeia directs that two of the official pills shall be coated by being shaken with a solution of Balsam of Tolu in Ether, viz.-Pil. Ferri Iodidi and Pil.
Phosphori. In extemporaneous pharmacy it is rarely practicable to coat pills with anything except gold or silver leaf, and this is sometimes directed. by the prescriber, the word "Deaurenter-let them be gilded" being used in the subscription. To do this neatly the pills should have no trace of powder on them, but should be first coated with a trifle of fresh mucilage by rolling between the mucilage-moistened fingers, each pill being then dropped directly on to a sheet of gold or silver leaf, until a dozen or more are so deposited. The leaf and its pills are then allowed to slide into a globular boxwood shaker, or the leaf may be first placed in the shaker and the pills dropped on it there. A cautious circular movement being given to the shaker the pills are caused to travel around its walls, and when the cover is removed they will be found to have each received an even coating of the metal used. Gold leaf should always be employed for pills of Blue Mass or Asafetida, as silver is amalgamated with the former and turned black by the latter.
Albumen may be used for coating small numbers of pills, which should be of very firm consistence before the coating is applied. Each pill is rolled between two fingers with a little white of egg, and then revolved in a warm pan. Another method of finishing them is, after coating with albumen, to rotate them in a tray with powdered French chalk until their surfaces become smooth and shiny. When carefully done this process gives a very
COMPRESSED PILLS, as now largely manufactured by several reliable firms, consist of various medicinal powders pressed into pill or tablet shape by machinery. They are extremely convenient preparations for the physician's use, as quite a variety can be carried in a pocket-case, and as slight pressure is sufficient to reduce them to powder, they can be dispensed with facility and accuracy of dosage. Messrs. John Wyeth & Brother, of Philadelphia, manufacture a very extensive line of these pills, including nearly all those put up in the sugar-coated or gelatin-coated form by other houses. The trade-list of this firm should be in the hands of every physician who keeps a small stock of medicines in his office, or who carries a pocket-case of drugs. The following list includes the most important of these preparations, the figures representing the number of grains in a pill in each
Cinchonidine Sulphate, 2, 3, 4, 5.
Extract of Cannabis Indica, 44.
Chlor. Corros., do, do, 20, 10.
Morphine Sulphate, T, %, %, 14, 2.
Opium Deodorized, I.
Pills of Iron.
R. Ferri Reducti,.
Glucosi, q. s.
Fiat massa, et div. in pil. xxv.
Emmenagogue Pill (Otto).
R. Ferri Sulph. Exsic.,
The following prescriptions represent the composition of a few unoffi cial pills in general use. A complete pill formulary is easily obtained, being published annually by each of the principal manufacturers.
R. Pulv. Aloes Socot.,
Ferri Sulph. Exsic,
Hooper's Female Pills.
gr. 1. gr. xv.
gr. xxvij. mx.
Fiat massa, et div. in pil. xx.
gr. xlviij. gr. xxiv.
ää gr. xij.
ää gr. vj.
Pulv. Canellæ Alb.,
Aquæ vel Syrupi, q. s. Fiat massa, et div. in pil., quisque pondo gr. ijss.
Sig. One to three at a dose.
Anaphrodisiac and Sedative.
Pepsin Sacch., 2, 5.
Permanganate, 1⁄2, 1, 2.
Quinine Bisulphate, 1⁄2, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. Salicylate, 2.
Sulphate, 1⁄2, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5.
Rhubarb, 3. Rhei Co. (U. S. P.).
Santonin. I, et Calomel, 1.
Salicylate, 3. 5.
Strychnine, up to 15. Zinc Phosphide, up to 2.
Tonic Pill for Women.
R. Strychnine Sulph.,
Fiat massa, et div. in pil. xxxv.
Sig. One three times daily.
R. Pulv. Opii, .
ää gr. j.
gr. x. gr. xx.
Sig. One at bedtime for chordee; repeat in two hours if necessary.
R. Pulv. Scammonii,
Gelatin Capsules are to be obtained from the drug stores, of various sizes from o to 10. They are a convenient means of administering oils or nauseous solids, and when filled may be swallowed as easily as a large pill. By some of the manufacturers Soluble Elastic Capsules are prepared, each containing an ordinary dose of such medicines as Castor Oil, Cod-liver Oil, etc. The largest of these capsules makes a bolus which may be swallowed with a little effort, as it is quite compressible and changes its shape to suit the calibre of the passage. The ordinary capsules are easily filled by the aid of a paper funnel, and the end of a pen-holder as a packer; but simple devices (capsule-fillers) may be obtained for the purpose of facilitating the operation.
Alum, gr. ij.
Alum, gr. 11⁄2, Catechu, gr. ij.
Ammon. Chlor., gr. ij, Liquorice, gr. viij.
Bismuth, gr. ij, and Charcoal, gr. v.
Ext. Taraxaci, q. s.
Fiat massa, et div. in pil. xx.
ää gr. xx.
Troches (Trochisci),-also named Tablets, Pastilles, Lozenges, etc., and Compressed Pills, are not readily compounded at the dispensing counter, but may be obtained in all first-class shops, being prepared in great variety by the manufacturers. Besides the official Troches (see ante, page 439), those named in the following list are generally for sale:
M., et fiant capsule xij.
Sig. Two capsules three times daily, soon after meals, for gonorrhoea.
Ginger and Sodium Bicarb.
Magnesia, gr. iij.
5 iss. 3 ss.
Pellitory, gr. j.
Pepsin, gr. iij, Charcoal, gr. iij, Magnesia,
Electuary for Piles.
R. Potassii Bitartratis,
M. Fiat electuarium.
Sig. A piece the size of a marble to be taken thrice daily.
Confections (Confectiones), and Electuaries (Electuaria),—are very seldom prescribed, and therefore can have but little place in extemporaneous pharmacy. They are medicinal powders, etc., beaten up with sugar, honey or molasses, to the consistence of a thick paste, and are administered with a spoon like preserved fruits. The two official confections are described on page 439, and a few old formulæ for similar preparations are given below as pharmaceutical curios. The first is a meritorious prescription.
Sodium Salicylate, gr. iij.
Antiseptic. Hydrarg. Chlor. Corr., gr. vijss.
Morphine Sulphate, gr. to 1⁄2.
[An ingredient of Warburg's Tincture.]
This preparation was official in the London Pharmacopœia of 1745. It contained 1 grain of Opium in 3 ss, and consisted of 45 ingredients, as follows, viz.: Cinnamon, 14 parts; Myrrh, II parts;-White Agaric, Spikenard, Ginger, Spanish Saffron, Treacle, Mustard Seed, Frankincense and Chian Turpentine, of each 10 parts;-Camel's Hay, Costus Arabacus, Zedoary, Indian leaf, Mace, French Lavender, Long Pepper, Seeds of Harwort, Juice of ripe Cistus, strained Storax, Opponex, strained Galbanum, Balsam of Gilead, Oil of Nutmeg, Russian Castor, of each 8 parts;—Water Germunder, Balsam-tree Fruit, Cubeb, White Pepper, Seeds of Cretian Carrot, Poley Mont, strained Bdellium, of each 7 parts;-Gentian-root, Celtic Hard, Leaves of Dittany of Crete, Red Rose, Seeds of Macedonium, Parsley, Sweet Fennel Seeds, Seeds of Lesser Cardamom, Gum Arabic, Opium, of each 5 parts;-Sweet Flag, Wild Valerian, Anise seed, Sagapenum, of each 3 parts;-Spigrul, St. John's Wort, Juice of Acacia, Catechu, Dried Bellies of Skunk, of each 21⁄2 parts;-the roots finely powdered and the whole mixed thoroughly into a paste with Clarified Honey.
Powders (Pulveres), -as prepared extemporaneously are generally compound, and may be mixed on a slab with a spatula, but a much better