Cascara is an official herb in many countries for relieving chronic constipation.
- Basic Botanical Info of Cascara sagrada.
- Description of the herb cascara sagrada.
- Rhamnus Purshiana:Botanical Source and History.
- Phytochemical and Compositions:Cascara sagrada.
- Traditional Use of Cascara Sagrada.
- Current Status of Cascara Sagrada.
- Cascara sagrada Therapeutic uses and health benefit.
- Administration and Suggestions:Cascara sagrada.
- Related Species and Pharmaceutical Preparations:Cascara sagrada.
- Research Update:Cascara Sagrada.
Related Species and Pharmaceutical Preparations:Cascara sagrada.:
Rhamnus californica, Eschscholtz (more) (Frangula californica, Gray), California coffee tree, California buckthorn: This agent constitutes a portion of some commercial lots of cascara sagrada. (For its differentiation from other species of Rhamnus, in powder, see Amer. Jour. Pharm., 1897.) It was introduced as a remedy for rheumatism by Prof. H. T. Webster, M. D., of California, who contributed an article,"Rhamnus Californica in Rheumatism":to the Eclectic Medical Journal, in July, 1895. Prof. Webster (Ec. Ann. of Med. and Surg., 1895, p. 30) says of it: "Rhamnus californica is commonly known as the California coffee tree. It is a shrub, which grows to the height of 20 feet in some instances, and bears a berry which is first green, then red, and finally, when ripened, black in color. This berry contains 2 seeds, resembling coffee-beans in shape, the flattened and grooved sides of the two lying in apposition, and being covered with a thin, sweetish-bitter pulp, resembling the choke cherry in taste, though the berry is as large as a marrowfat pea. It grows in the Sierras, in the coast range, and along the coast from Santa Barbara as far north as southern Oregon."
In this connection, Dr. Rusby states (Amer. Jour. Pharm., 1890, p. 532) that Rhamnus californica grows sparingly in northern California, but becomes more abundant southward and eastward, through Mexico and Arizona, while Rhamnus Purshiana is abundant from northern California northward, so that the place of collection forms presumptive evidence of the botanical origin of the bark. "It has been used in domestic practice as a substitute for Rhamnus Purshiana, and it has, doubtless, been a common practice to sophisticate the latter with the bark of Rhamnus californica, the resemblance between the two barks being very great, except that the bark of Rhamnus californica is thinner. California wholesale druggists designate the bark of the Rhamnus californica as 'thin cascara bark.' Rhamnus californica (the bark) seems to me to be the most positive remedy for rheumatism and muscular pain of rheumatoid character that I have ever employed. A saturated tincture of the fresh bark, made in alcohol, may be administered in 15 or 20-drop doses, every 3 or 4 hours, in ordinary cases of acute rheumatism; 3 or 4 doses a day will answer in chronic cases.
The preferable form of administration is that of a decoction of the recently dried bark. A heaping tablespoonful of the finely-broken bark is covered with a pint of cold water and steeped over a slow fire, it being allowed to simmer 15 or 20 minutes after reaching the boiling point. Of this 1 or 2 tablespoonfuls may be administered every 3 or 4 hours. If a laxative effect follows this dose, the amount to be administered must afterward be reduced until the cathartic effect is avoided. Catharsis is not necessary for its effective action. I have found it very effectual in long-standing and obstinate dysmenorrhoea (not requiring surgical interference). It may be administered in the manner already described, and should be continued 3 or 4 months, about 4 times a day. The dose of specific Rhamnus californica ranges from 10 to 30 drops. A variety of this plant, with white, tomentose leaves, is said to grow in New Mexico and Arizona" (Webster).
Kasagra: This is a palatable preparation of cascara sagrada (a mild laxative), prepared exclusively by Messrs. Frederick Stearns Co., Detroit, and was introduced by this firm under the name of "Cascara Aromatic."
Elixir Purgans: This compound is prepared exclusively by Eli Lilly Co., Indianapolis, Ind., and is extensively used as a pleasant purgative and laxative. It contains and fully represents Rhamnus Purshiana, Euonymus atropurpureus, Cassia acutifolia, (purified), Iris versicolor, and Hyoscyamus leaves combined with aromatics.
Colubrina reclinata, Brongn. (more), Mabee bark.: South America. Contains 9.7 per cent of a bitter glucosid (W. Elborne and H. Wilson, Pharm. Jour. Trans., Vol. XV, 1885, p. 831), and is employed in the West Indies as a gastric stimulant.
Colubrina asiatica, Brongn. (more) (Ceanothus asiatica, Linne; Rhamnus laevigatus, Sol.).: Fiji Islands and Australia. The leaves are used by natives of the Fijis to cleanse the hair and destroy vermin (Maiden)
Alphitonia excelsa, Reissek (more) (Colubrina excelsa, Fenzl), Red ash, Leather jacket.: Australia. Used occasionally in tanning (Maiden).
- 1.Cascara is an official herb in many countries for relieving chronic constipation.
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