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Full text of "Medical Jurisprudence And Toxicology"

ATROPA BELLADONNA                                                  679

4. Datura administered for Robbery.—(a) A Brahmin was sentenced to nve years'
rigorous imprisonment under section 328, I.P.C., for administering datura in cooked
puries and potatoes to not less than nine persons of a family residing at Nimsar. All of
them were taken ill and were unconscious, but recovered in three days.—hid. Dailv
Teleg., Aug. 10, 1923.

(b)  Four persons from Roorkee went to Hardwar to take a bath in the Ganges.
One of them met a Sadhu who  gave him some  chapati and rice mixed with datura
powder.   Soon afterwards he became unconscious and the Sadhu took away his purse
containing about 20 rupees.   He was later arrested, and a phial containing datura powder
was recovered from him.—U.P. Chem. Examiner's Ann. Rep., 1946.

(c)  A man and his brother went one evening with two strangers to a temple near
their village to excavate a treasure said to have been buried in the temple.   The strangers
gave each of the brothers a cup of "Panakum"   (water sweetened with jaggery)   and
arrack mixed with some powder of datura seeds, and then began chanting " mantrams ".
Both the brothers became unconscious after a short time, when the strangers left the
temple with a gold ring and one hundred rupees belonging to the brothers  on the
pretext of immersing the deity in a neighbouring rivulet.   One of the brothers died
and the other recovered.—Madras Chem. Examiner's Ann. Rep., 1949.


This plant belongs to N.O. Solanacese, and grows wildly in England near
villages or on ruins and abundantly in India in the Himalayan ranges at an
altitude of 6,000 to 12,000 feet above the sea level. Atropa Lutescens is often
used as a substitute for Belladonna plant. All parts of these plants, viz.
the leaves, berries and root, are poisonous. They contain three alkaloids,
atropine, hyoscyamine and belladonine, but the most important of them is
atr opine.

Atropine, Ci7HoBO;$N, crystallizes in odourless and colourless, prismatic
needles, and has a bitter taste. It is sparingly soluble in water (1 in 500),
but freely in ether, alcohol and chloroform. Its aqueous solution has an
alkaline reaction, and is readily decomposed by keeping. It can be chemi-
cally split up by strong acids and alkalies into tropine and tropic acid, and
may be reconstructed synthetically from these substances. The non-official
dose of atropine is 1/240 to 1/60 grain. Atropine sulphate (Atropince
sulphas) is an official preparation, the dose being 1/240 to 1/60 grain, It is
odourless and occurs as colourless crystals or as a white powder, and is
soluble in water and in alcohol.

The following are the pharmacopceial preparations of belladonna: —

1.   Belladonnas Folium.—Belladonna leaf.   It must not yield less than 0,3 per cent
of the alkaloids.

2.   Belladonna Proaparaia  (Pulvis Belladonna).—Powdered belladonna leaf.   Dose,
J to 3 grains.

3.   Extractum Belladonnas Siccum.—It contains 1 per cent of the alkaloids.   Dose,
J to 1 grain,

4.    Tinctura Belladonnas.—It contains 0.03 per cent of the alkaloids.   Dose, 5 to 15

5.   Belladonna Radix.—Belladonna root

6.   Belladonna   Radicis  Pulvis.—Powdered  belladonna   root.   It   is   grey  to   light
brown in colour.                        „

7.   Extractum Belladonnas Liquidum.—It contains 0.75 per cent of the alkaloids of
the root.

8.   Linimentum Belladonnas.—It contains 0.375 per cent of the alkaloids of bella-
donna root,

9.   Suppositoria Belladonnas.—Each contains 1/60 grain of the alkaloids.

The following official preparations are derived from, atropine sulphate : —

1.   Injectio Atropinos Sulphatis.—Strength, 1/100  grain of atropine sulphate in 15
minims of sterilized water.   Dose, 1/240 to 1/60 grain by subcutaneous injection.

2,    Injectio Morphines et Atropiuoe.—Strength, 1/100 grain of atropine sulphate and
about 1/6 grain of morphine sulphate in 15 minims of sterile water.   Dose, 8 to 15 minims
by subcutaneous injection.