Also found in: Dictionary, Medical.
(named after the ancient Roman physician Galen, who studied and described methods of preparing the drugs known at that time), medicinal preparations obtained from plant raw material (for example, roots, rhizomes, leaves, flowers, and bark) and animal raw material by special treatment designed to extract as much of the agent as possible and free it from inert substances.
Most galenicals are extracted from raw materials with water, alcohol, ether, or mixtures of alcohol and water or ether and alcohol. Other galenicals are essentially solutions of various medicinal substances in water, alcohol, or fatty oils. Galenicals include tinctures, extracts, medicinal waters, alcohols, syrups, soaps, plasters, and liniments. The concentration of the agent in a galenical varies with the conditions under which the plants are grown, the collection and extraction of the raw material, and the technological process for obtaining the agent from the raw material. This accounts for the difficulty in determining the exact dosages of galenicals, as well as for the efforts made to obtain standardized preparations from chemically pure agents isolated from medicinal raw materials.
Galenicals are produced, as a rule, by so-called galenical-pharmaceutical enterprises. The modern pharmaceutical industry produces neogalenicals—water, water and alcohol, chloroform and alcohol, and other plant extracts that are as free as possible from inert substances. They are similar in pharmacological action to chemically pure substances. Unlike galenicals, they can be injected.
REFERENCERozentsveig, P. E., and Iu. K. Sander. Tekhnologiia lekarstv i galenovykh preparatov. Leningrad, 1967.
R. I. KVASNOI