Rhizoma Vallerianae
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Rhizoma Vallerianae

An antispasmodic and stimulant, for use in hysteria and functional nervous disorders.


Valerian root contains about 1 per cent. of volatile oil, consisting of bornyl isovalerianate, formate, butyrate, and acetate, associated with l-pinene, l-camphene, and terpineol. Free isovalerianic acid is gradually liberated as mentioned above. Two alkaloids, chatinine and valerianine, are also said to be present, as well as resin and a glucoside.

The action of valerian root is virtually that of its volatile oil, the valerianic esters of which have no stimulating action on the psychical functions and the circulation, as was formerly believed, although they possess the usual carminative action of the volatile oils. The action of such malodorous substances as valerian is generally attributed to the mental effect produced by their unpleasant odour and taste. Valerian is used as a carminative and antispasmodic in hysteria and similar nervous manifestations.

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