Gymnema sylvestre. N. O. Asclepiadaceae. Tincture of leaves.
Clinical.-Snake-bite. Taste, altered.
Characteristics.-This plant, which grows in the Deccan peninsula, Assam, and some parts of Africa, is a woody climber with long, slender branches. The powdered root has a reputation among the natives as a remedy for snake-bite. It is mentioned here an account of a single symptom observed from chewing one or two leaves, which had a bitterish, astringent, and slightly acid taste. Immediately after chewing them the sense of taste for sugar was lost, and also the taste for bitters, the effect lasting some hours. Everything else could be tasted, as the ginger in gingerbread but not the sweet. Quinine tasted like chalk.
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