For the anaesthetic properties of ether see Anaesthesia.
The uses of chloroform which fall to be mentioned here are: - as a counter-irritant; as a local anaesthetic for toothache due to caries, it being applied on a cotton wool plug which is inserted into the carious cavity; as an antispasmodic in tetanus and hydrophobia; and as the best and most immediate and effective antidote in cases of strychnine poisoning.
Ward commemorating the first proof of the anaesthetic properties of ether, made in 1846 in the Massachusetts General Hospital by Dr W.
It acts similarly, though less markedly, upon the nerves which determine the secretion of the perspiration, and is therefore a local anaesthetic or anodyne and an anhidrotic. Being rapidly absorbed into the blood, it exercises a long and highly important series of actions on nearly every part and function of the nervous system.
The therapeutic applications of the drug are based entirely upon its anaesthetic or anodyne power.
Its use as a local anaesthetic (see Anaesthesia) makes it the most valuable of the coca alkaloids, and it is much used in ophthalmic practice.