One of the oldest remedies brought down to Present-day medicine is kaolin (aluminum silicate). It is one of the chief products of the erosion of igneous rock and therefore is a common constituent of many soils and is classified as a silicious earth. Rich deposits of high grade kaolin are found in parts of the United States and also in the Orient, where it is mined chiefly for use in pottery and was used very effectively in the treatment of Asiatic cholera many centuries ago.
Both Walker1 and Braafladt2 were impressed by the great usefulness of this product in the treatment of the 1919 epidemic of cholera in China. In giving it both by mouth and by rectum it proved to be one of their most useful aids in bringing about a great decrease in mortality. Walker in discussing the rationale of kaolin concluded that its action was