History.—Suppositories are globular, conical, cylindrical, or club-shaped solid bodies designed for introduction into the urethra, rectum, or vagina, in order to effect a therapeutical influence upon the adjacent parts or upon the general system. In a few instances they are prepared of articles not readily liquefying at the animal temperature, but, generally, they should be slowly fusible. The quantity of the active medicinal agent in each suppository, should, as a general rule, be about 3 times its dose for internal administration; however, with certain articles, or for certain results, more or less of this quantity will occasionally be required, according to the circumstances. Heretofore, when suppositories have been ordered by the physician, they were prepared by pouring the partially cooled mass, of which they were composed, into paper cones, the paper not being removed until the suppository became thoroughly hardened. The only advantage this method possesses is the readiness with which the cones may be made, and of any size required. The objections to it are the length of time required to finish the suppository, and the uncertainty of having the external surface clear, regular, and polished. In the preparation of suppositories, two things are especially required: (1) A composition which will permit the active ingredients to be so regularly diffused that each suppository will contain an equal quantity of the medicinal agent; the composition when cold must be firm, smooth, not liable to crack or split, must not adhere to the mold, and must be readily fusible at the temperature of the body. (2) A mold which, with as little extra manipulation as possible, will give smooth suppositories, of uniform size, shape, and weight, which will permit of their being made with as little loss of time as possible, and from which the suppository can be promptly removed.

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