Myrobalans are the dried immature fruits of Terminalia Chebula, Retz. (N.O. Combretaceae), a tree indigenous to India. The fruits are black in colour, ovoid or fusiform in shape, about 8 to 13 millimetres long and 9 millimetres wide. They are much shrivelled longitudinally, hard and brittle; the fractured surface is shiny. The drug has no odour, but a very astringent taste.
Constituents.—The chief constituent of the immature fruits is from 20 to 30 per cent. of tannic acid; other constituents are gallic acid, free fatty acid, resins, glucose, a bitter principle, and colouring matter. The matured fruits, known as "chebulic myrobalans," are said to contain an organic acid, chebulinic acid, which splits up into tannic and gallic acids when heated with water.
Action and Uses.—Myrobalans are official in India and the Eastern Colonies as an equivalent of galls, the action of the drug being due to tannin.
Dose.—2 to 4 grammes (30 to 60 grains).
- Unguentum Myrobalani, I.C.A.—MYROBALAN OINTMENT.
- Myrobalans, in very fine powder, 20; benzoated lard or suet, 80. Mix the powdered myrobalans with the benzoated lard (or suet). Myrobalan ointment is official in India and the Eastern Colonies, in place of ointment of galls; the basis may be modified to meet the exigencies of climate.
- Unguentum Myrobalani cum Opio, I.C.A.—MYROBALAN AND OPIUM OINTMENT.
- Myrobalan ointment, 92.5; opium in very fine powder, 7.5. Mix the opium with the myrobalan ointment. Myrobalan and opium ointment is official, in place of ointment of galls and opium, in India and the Eastern Colonies; the basis may be modified to meet the exigencies of climate.
The British Pharmaceutical Codex, 1911, was published by direction of the Council of the Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain.