Related entry: Senega (U. S. P.)—Senega
SYNONYM: Fluid extract of seneka.
Preparation.—"Senega, in No. 40 powder, one thousand grammes (1000 Gm.) [2 lb. av., 3 ozs., 120 grs.]; ammonia water, fifty cubic centimeters (50 Cc.) [1 fl℥, 332♏]; alcohol, water, each, a sufficient quantity to make one thousand cubic centimeters (1000 Cc.) [33 fl℥, 391♏]. Mix the ammonia water with seven hundred and fifty cubic centimeters (750 Cc.) [25 fl℥, 173♏] of alcohol and two hundred cubic centimeters (200 Cc.) [6 fl℥, 366♏] of water, and, having moistened the powder with four hundred and fifty cubic centimeters (450 Cc.) [15 fl℥, 104♏] of the mixture, pack it firmly in a cylindrical glass percolator; then add enough menstruum to saturate the powder and leave a stratum above it. When the liquid begins to drop from the percolator, close the lower orifice, and, having closely covered the percolator, macerate for 48 hours. Then allow the percolation to proceed, gradually adding, first, the remainder of the menstruum, and then a mixture of alcohol and water, made in the proportion of seven hundred and fifty cubic centimeters (750 Cc.) [25 fl℥, 173♏] of alcohol to two hundred and fifty cubic centimeters (250 Cc.) [8 fl℥, 218♏] of water, until the senega is exhausted. Reserve the first eight hundred and fifty cubic centimeters (850 Cc.) [28 fl℥, 356♏] of the percolate, and evaporate the remainder, in a porcelain capsule, to a soft extract; dissolve this in the reserved portion, and add enough of the last-mentioned mixture of alcohol and water to make the fluid extract measure one thousand cubic centimeters (1000 Cc.) [33 fl℥, 391♏]"—(U. S. P.).
Description, Medical Uses, and Dosage.—This is a rather thin, deep-brown fluid, having the acrid taste and peculiar odor of senega. Senegin is better extracted by water than by a menstruum strongly alcoholic, though when water is used pectinous matter loads the product so that after a time gelatinization takes place. As a hydro-alcoholic menstruum containing one-third water thoroughly extracts the properties of senega, and with the presence of ammonia to prevent gelatinization, the fluid keeps well, it has been suggested that the official menstruum is unnecessarily too strongly alcoholic. By age, this fluid extract is liable to precipitate a gelatinous substance (pectic acid), which may be redissolved by the cautious addition of a few drops of ammonia water. Fluid extract of senega possesses all the properties of the root, and may be given drachm for drachm, in all cases in which the root is indicated. It may also be added to syrup, honey, and other articles, to form senega syrup, expectorants, etc.
King's American Dispensatory, 1898, was written by Harvey Wickes Felter, M.D., and John Uri Lloyd, Phr. M., Ph. D.