Cotton root bark is the dried root bark of Gossypium herbaceum, Linn. (N.O. Malvaceae), a perennial plant indigenous to India, and cultivated there and in the United States, Egypt, etc. Gossypii Cortex, U.S.P., may be obtained from various cultivated species of Gossypium. The bark occurs in thin, tough, and fibrous strips to which long thin tapering rootlets are attached at intervals. Its outer surface is covered with a rough cinnamon-brown cork, which is easily separated, and exhibits a paler cortex beneath, while the inner surface is whitish, silky, and finely striated. The bast is laminated, the outer laminae exhibiting, when separated, surfaces bearing minute brownish spots. Cotton root bark has no odour, but it possesses a somewhat acrid, astringent taste.
Constituents.—The chief constituent of the drug is a pale yellow or colourless acid resin, which is present to the extent of about 8 per cent., and becomes bright reddish-brown from absorption of oxygen. The bark also contains fixed oil, gum, sugar, tannin, and chlorophyll.
Action and Uses.—Cotton root bark has been used as an emmenagogue, also as a substitute for ergot in labour, but the results alleged to have been obtained by its use require confirmation. A tincture, liquid extract, and decoction are prepared; the last two are official for use in India, and in the Eastern, North American, and West Indian Colonies. A preparation of cotton seed, sold under the trade-name "Lactagol," is used to increase the flow of milk in nursing women.
- Decoctum Gossypii Radicis Corticis, I.C.A.—DECOCTION OF COTTON ROOT BARK.
- Cotton root bark, bruised, 20; distilled water, sufficient to produce 100. Add the bruised bark to 200 of the water, boil until the liquid is reduced to 100, strain, and make up to the required volume, if necessary, by passing distilled water through the strainer. Decoction of cotton root bark is official in India, the Eastern, North American, and West Indian Colonies, where it is used as a substitute for ergot, as an emmenagogue and to check haemorrhage. Dose.—15 to 60 mils (1/2 to 2 fluid ounces).
- Extractum Gossypii Radicis Corticis Liquidum, I.C.A.—LIQUID EXTRACT OF COTTON ROOT BARK.
- Cotton root bark, in No. 30 powder, 100; glycerin, 25; alcohol, sufficient to produce 100. Add 75 of the alcohol to the glycerin, moisten the drug with 50 of the mixture, pack in a percolator, saturate with the menstruum, and allow to stand for forty-eight hours; then exhaust by percolation, first with the remainder of the menstruum, and then with alcohol. Reserve the first 70 of percolate, concentrate the remainder to a soft extract, dissolve this in the reserved portion, and make up to the required volume with alcohol. Liquid extract of cotton root bark is official in India, and in the Eastern, North American, and West Indian Colonies. Dose.—2 to 4 mils (1/2 to 1 fluid drachm).
- Tinctura Gossypii B.P.C.—TINCTURE OF COTTON ROOT BARK. 1 in 4.
- Dose.—2 to 4 mils (1/2 to 1 fluid drachm).
The British Pharmaceutical Codex, 1911, was published by direction of the Council of the Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain.