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Cajuput Oil

CAJUPUT OIL, a volatile oil obtained by distillation from the leaves of the myrtaceous tree Melaleuca leucadendron, and probably other species. The trees yielding the oil are found throughout the Indian Archipelago, the Malay Peninsula and over the hotter parts of the Australian continent; but the greater portion of the oil is produced from Celebes Island. The name cajuput is derived from the native Kayuputi or white wood. The oil is prepared from leaves collected on a hot dry day, which are macerated in water, and distilled after fermenting for a night. This oil is extremely pungent to the taste, and has the odour of a mixture of turpentine and camphor. It consists mainly of cineol (see Terpenes), from which cajuputene having a hyacinthine odour can be obtained by distillation with phosphorus pentoxide. The drug is a typical volatile oil, and is used internally in doses of  to 3 minims, for the same purposes as, say, clove oil. It is frequently employed externally as a counter-irritant.

Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)

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