Maize stigmas (Zea, U.S.P.) are obtained from Zea Mays, Linn. (N.O. Gramineae), the stigmas and styles being collected, and used fresh or dried. The drug occurs as a loose, filamentous, tangled mass of slender, yellowish or brownish filaments, from 5 to 1:5 centimetres long. It is nearly odourless, but has a faintly sweetish taste with a characteristic flavour. The ash of the drug amounts to about 12 per cent.
Constituents.—The chief constituents of the drug are resin and maizenic acid, the latter a crystalline substance, soluble in water, alcohol, or ether. The stigmas also contain fixed oil, sugar, gum, and an odorous principle, as yet unidentified.
Action and Uses.—Maize stigmas are reported to be diuretic and mildly anodyne. The drug is used for the alleviation of strangury, vesical pain, and other symptoms of the urinary tract, especially those due to phosphatic and uric acid gravel. An infusion (1 in 10) may be administered in wineglassful doses several times a day, and a liquid extract is also used.
- Extractum Maidis Liquidum, B.P.C.—LIQUID EXTRACT OF MAIZE STIGMAS. Syn.—Liquid Extract of Zea; Liquid Extract of Corn Silk. 1 in 1.
- Given with a large volume of demulcent solution in urinary and renal catarrhs. Dose.—4 to 8 mils (1 to 2 fluid drachms).
- Syrupus Maidis, B.P.C.—SYRUP OF MAIZE STIGMAS. 1 (liquid extract) in 10.
- Dose.—8 to 15 mils (2 to 4 fluid drachms).
The British Pharmaceutical Codex, 1911, was published by direction of the Council of the Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain.