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Medicinal Effects



All the following terms are commonly found in standard reference works on herbal medicine. A few are not used generally, but most of them are. This Glossary contains all of the names used in Herbal Medicine, and the meanings for them.







Oxytocic - An agent that stimulates contractions of the uterine muscle and so facilitates or speeds up childbirth.

Pectoral - A remedy for pulmonary or other chest diseases.

Poison - A substance which has harmful or destructive effect when in contact with living tissue.

Purgative - An agent that produces a vigorous emptying of the bowels.

Refrigerant - An agent that lowers abnormal body heat.

Restorative - An agent that restores consciousness or normal physiological activity.

Rebefacient - A gentle local irritant that produces reddening of the skin.

Sedative - A soothing agent that reduces nervousness, distress, or irritation.

Sialagogue - An agent that stimulates the secretion of saliva.

Specific - An agent which cures or alleviates a particular condition or disease.

Stimulant - An agent that excites or quickens the activity of physiological processes.

Stomachic - An agent that strengthens, stimulates, or tones the stomach.

Styptic - An agent that contracts tissue; astringent; specifically, a hemostatic agent that stops bleeding by contracting the blood vessels.

Sudorific - An agent that promotes or increases perspiration. (see also diaphoretic).