Are three remedies having a reputation for their power to control hæmorrhages. Erigeron has cured epistaxis, with congestion to the head, red face (Melilotus) and febrile action. Hæmatemesis, with violent retching and burning in the stomach. Bleeding from hæmorrhoids, with burning. Hæmoptysis and blood spitting. Hæmaturia, with stone in the bladder and uterine hæmorrhage. The only marked symptom in addition to the hæmorrhage that should lead to its selection over other remedies of this class, especially in its hæmorrhages from the pelvic organs, is the marked violent irritation of the rectum and bladder. Here we must remember also Cantharis, Lilium tig. and Nux vomica.
Trillium, from clinical use, seems to be a genuine hæmorrhage remedy. The blood is bright red, whether of the active or passive kind of hæmorrhage. It is especially useful in menses every two weeks, lasting a week and very profuse. Here a choice may have to be made between it and Calcarea ost. and Nux vomica.
It resembles China in flooding, with fainting, dim sight and noises in the ears. Of course, China would be the best for the after effects of such a hæmorrhage.
There is sometimes with such flooding a relaxed sensation as if the hips, sacro-synchrondroses and small of back would all fall apart; wants to be bound together. This should doubly indicate it in post-partum hæmorrhage.
It is also especially useful at the climacteric with the above symptoms. It has cured hæmorrhages from other organs, but I have no experience with it there.
Millefolium is the only one of the three that has seemed to have produced hæmorrhages in its pathogenesis. Hahnemann says of it: "It causes nose-bleed. It causes hæmaturia." Clinical use has verified it.
The blood from the different organs is generally bright red, like that of Aconite, but the anxiety of that remedy is not there. In fact, no great fear is present in the cases where I have used it. Sometimes the blood in the urine forms in the bottom of the vessel a bloody cake. When a young man I was troubled for a long time with frequent attacks of profuse epistaxis. Dr. T. L Brown prescribed for me several times, but without success. I became weak from loss of blood. Finally my old grandmother told me to chew yarrow root, and showed me the plant growing in my father's yard. I did so and was quickly cured. While on my vacation at Blue Mountain Lake, in the Adirondacks, I met a man there in the last stage of consumption. He had his medicine from his doctor in New York with him. He was spitting daily large quantities of blood, with severe cough, and his Secale was nor able to control it in the least. He finally said to me: "Doctor, can you do anything to stop this bleeding?" I stooped down (I did not want that patient on my hands) and pulled up a little root of yarrow growing at our feet, handed it to him and told him to chew it. He looked surprised, but did so, liked the taste of it and kept on chewing. It stopped his bleeding and soothed his cough so much that he dug up a basket of yarrow and took it home with him. That controlled the bleeding. He went to Florida for the winter, but died the next spring. It is especially recommended for hæmorrhages after a fall or other injuries. If Arnica failed in such a case I would think of Millefolium.
Extremely slow, intermittent pulse; weak heart; or rapid, very irregular pulse.
Respiration; irregular, difficult, slow, deep or performed by frequent deep sighs; sometimes stops on dropping off into sleep.
Excessive jaundice, with slow, weak heart, and ashy-white stools.
Faintness or sinking at the stomach; feels as if he would die if he moved.
Blueness of skin, eyelids; lips, tongue; cyanosis. Distended veins on lids, ears, lips and tongue.
* * * * *
Very much has been said and written upon this as a heart remedy: It is called a cardiac tonic, but Homopathy knows no such thing as a tonic in medicines. The only tonic, in the sense of something to impart strength or tone to the human organism, is nourishing food. If Digitalis is capable of correcting a diseased condition, it does so by opposing its own power to cure to the power that is making the patient sick, which is called disease.
The leading characteristic of Digitalis is a every slow pulse. This may alternate with a very quick pulse, and between the two we may sometimes get a very irregular or intermittent pulse.
One day I saw an old but very strong man staggering across the road toward my office. I thought he was drunk, but on closer observation I noticed that his face looked purple, his lips bluish, and I stepped out and helped him in. He sat down and could not for a few minutes speak a word, but sat and struggled for breath. His pulse was very irregular and intermittent. When he could speak, he told me that for a number of weeks past he had been having these spells, had fallen several times and been obliged to go into the stores and sit, before he could go along the streets. Auscultation revealed hard, blowing sound with first beat of the heart. He had had inflammatory rheumatism in his younger days. He had been obliged to give up all manual labor and dared not go away from home on his business, that of bridge builder. Said he expected to die with this heart disease. I gave him Digitalis 2, a few drops in water. In a few days I saw him shoveling snow from the walk in front of his dwelling. "Hello," he said, "I have no heart disease;" and I saw him often after that and he told me that that medicine cured him of "those spells."
A young man of good habits was taken with nausea and vomiting. He was drowsy, and after a couple of days he began to grow very jaundiced all over. The sclerotica were as yellow as gold, as was indeed, the skin all over the body, even to the nails. The stools were natural as to consistence, but perfectly colorless, while the urine was as brown as lager beer, or even more so. Where you could see through it, on the edge of the receptacle, it was yellow as fresh bile. The pulse was only thirty beats per minute, and often dropped out a beat.
This was a perfect Digitalis case of jaundice, and this remedy cure him perfectly in a few days, improvement in his feelings taking place very shortly after beginning it; the stools, urine and skin gradually taking on their natural color. The characteristic slow pulse was the leading symptom to the prescription, for all the rest of the symptoms may be found in almost any well-developed case of severe jaundice.
In dropsies, consequent on heart disease, Digitalis is often the remedy, and in these cases the skin is more apt to be bluish, as from venous stagnation, than in those cases dependent on renal disease.
Among the troubles consequent upon weak heart action with slow pulse that are particularly amenable to digitalis are vertigo (this is often found in the aged); dropsy of brain, chest, abdomen or scrotum; passive congestion of the lungs.
Among the more characteristic symptoms, aside from the slow pulse, are:
"Blueness of skin, especially eyelids, lips, tongue, and nails; cyanosis."
"Faintness or sinking at stomach; feel as if he were dying."
"Sensation as if the heart would stop beating if she moved." (Gelsemium, if she did not keep moving. Lobelia, as if it would cease any way).
"Respiration irregular, difficult, performed by frequent deep sighs."
"Great weakness and general sudden sinking of strength."
When going to sleep the breath fades away and seems to be gone; then wakes up with a gasp to catch it, cannot get to sleep on this account. (Grindelia and Lachesis).
Constriction of the heart, as if an iron band prevented its normal movement; < lying on left side.
Constriction, general; of heart, chest, bladder, rectum, uterus, vagina, etc.
Hæmorrhages in connection with heart troubles; nose, lungs, stomach, rectum, bladder.
Palpitation; day or night; worse when walking and lying on left side, approach of menses.
Fear of death; believes the disease incurable.
* * * * *
Cactus grandiflorus is another great heart remedy, and its grand characteristic is not at all like Digitalis. It is a "sensation of constriction of the heart, as if an iron band prevented its normal movement." (Iodine has a sensation as if heart was squeezed together. Lilium tigrin., as if grasped and released alternately. Lachesis, constriction on awaking, throws off covering; Arsenicum alb., constriction or oppression on walking). This sensation of constriction is not confined to the heart, but is found in the chest, bladder, rectum, uterus, vagina; in short, it seems to be a general characteristic for this remedy, as does that of fullness for Æsculus hippocastanum.
The heart troubles of Cactus are quite apt to be caused by inflammatory rheumatism, where it is one of our best remedies.
Among the symptoms found, more or less connected with heart troubles, for which Cactus is indicated, are: Heavy pain on vertex like a weight (Glonoine; Lachesis at climacteric), a frequent symptom in persons suffering with heart troubles, cerebral congestion, profuse epistaxis, hæmatemesis, hæmorrhages from anus, hæmaturia or hæmoptysis. In any hæmorrhages, seeming to be in sympathy with heart trouble, think of Cactus.
Now, besides the leading characteristic of Cactus on the heart, we have other chest and heart symptoms which are very valuable. Oppression of chest or difficult breathing, as if the chest could not be expanded, with this sense of band-like constriction.
"Periodical attacks of suffocation, with fainting, cold perspiration on face and loss of pulse."
"Fluttering and palpitation of heart, increased when walking or lying on left side."
"Great irregularity of heart's action, intermittent pulse, valvular murmurs in organic diseases of heart."
"Palpitation < lying on left side (Nat. mur.).
dema of left hand, foot and leg."
"Rheumatism of all joints, beginning in upper extremities." (Ledum in lower.).
"Numbness of the left arm" (Aconite; aching, Rhus toxicod.).
"Cactus is a remedy of not very wide range; but of paramount importance in its sphere."
Violent beating of the heart, shakes the chest; sometimes audible several inches away.
Left-sided neuralgias of head, face and eyes; pains increase and decrease with the rising and setting sun; watering of the eye, on affected side.
Modalities: < from motion, noise, inspiration, moving eyes, cold, damp, rainy weather; rising sun; > quiet; dry air, setting sun.
* * * * *
In this we have another valuable, heart remedy. The pains in the heart in this remedy are as severe as those under Cactus and the action is more violent than under either Cactus or Digitalis. It is so violent as often to be visible to the eye through the clothes, shaking the whole chest, and the sounds are often audible several inches away. It is not only a very valuable remedy in acute attacks of the heart but in chronic valvular affections following the acute attack, where we have the loud blowing sounds and attacks of violent palpitation. I have seen the violent attacks of palpitation quickly relieved, and not only that, but the valvular troubles gradually and perfectly cured, under the action of this remedy. In these troubles the patient can often only lie on the right side (Phos., Nat. mur.), or with the head very high; least motion < (Naja). It is one of our best remedies for neuralgic affections of the head, face, and eyes.
The headaches are generally one-sided, beginning in the occiput and extending forward, and settling over the left eye (right, Sang. and Silicea). They are aggravated by the least noise or jar. They increase with the rising of the sun and decrease with its going down (Natrum mur., Tabacum), and the eye on the affected side often runs clear water. (Chelidon. maj., right side with water gushing out).
Spigelia is very useful in ciliary neuralgia, the pain being of the same character as the headaches. The pains are also stabbing, running through into the back of the head, or like Actæa, they press outward, as if the eyeballs were too large for the sockets (Comocladia).
In any or all of the above-named affections, for which Spigelia is so efficacious, the patient is made worse from motion, noise, inspiration or moving the eyes, and especially in cold, damp, rainy weather. It makes us think of Bryonia, Kalmia and Natrum mur., and Actæa (motion), Belladonna (noise), and China (touch, especially light touch). It is certainly a very valuable remedy, though not one, so far as known, of very wide range of action.
Ought to be noticed just here, because it seems, at first sight, so much like Spigelia, and Hering says it follows Spigelia well in heart disease.
Both remedies have severe neuralgia of the face, but Kalmia is oftenest right-sided, Spigelia left. Both have pains in eyes, worse on turning them, but Kalmia has a sense of stiffness (Rhus tox. and Natrum mur.). Spigelia eyes hurt as if too large for the orbit. Both affect strongly the heart, and are useful in heart troubles of rheumatic origin. Both have violent, visible, tumultuous action of heart; Spigelia is invariably so, while Kalmia has at times remarkable slowness of the pulse (like Digitalis). The Kalmia form of rheumatism, like Cactus, goes from above downward (Ledum from below upward), and the pains in Kalmia shift suddenly. If we were called to a case of migratory rheumatism, and the heart seemed to be suffering, we would think of Kalmia before Pulsatilla, of course all the other symptoms taken into consideration. The pain of Kalmia often extends down to left hand (Rhus).
So far as the neuralgic symptoms of Kalmia are concerned, they are not much like Spigelia, except that they locate in the face, and are very violent. The sides and time of aggravation are different, and Kalmia is not often found involving the whole head, like Spigelia. Hering mentions that with Kalmia "weakness is the only general symptom with neuralgia" The neuralgic pains of Kalmia are sometimes attended with, or followed by, numbness of de parts affected, in this resembling Aconite, Chamomilla, Gnaphalium and Platina. It is to study up the points of resemblance of remedies having a particular affinity for the same region or organ, and to note ado more particularly the differences, that perfects the true homopathic prescriber. No kind of labour will bring better returns.
Persistent nausea, which nothing relieves, in many complaints.
Headache as if bruised, all through the bones of the head, down into root of tongue, with nausea.
Stools as if fermented, or as green as grass, with colic and nausea.
Hæmorrhages from uterus; profuse, bright blood and heavy breading with nausea.
Spasmodic, or asthmatic cough; great depression and wheezing breading; child becomes rigid and turns blue.
Backache, short chill, long fever, heat usually with thirst; raging headache, nausea; and sweat last; nausea during pyrexia.
Better than Quinine, in intermittents, or after its abuse, the symptoms agreeing.
* * * * *
Ipecacuanha leads all the remedies for nausea. Any complaint accompanied with persistent nausea, the patient not being at all relieved by vomiting, just as sick after as before-this is what we mean by persistent nausea. This should at once call attention to this remedy. It is often found in connection with gastric troubles from dietetic errors, and the choice will sometimes be between Ipecacuanha and Pulsatilla, because both are useful in gastric disturbances caused by indulgence in mixed diet -pastry, ice-cream, pork, fatty food, etc. Pulsatilla may be considered the better, while the food is in the stomach. Ipecacuanha after it is out, but the nausea persists notwithstanding.
Again, with Pulsatilla the tongue is often coated, like Antimonium crudum, while with Ipecacuanha there may be a slight coating, or the tongue may be perfectly clean. This vomiting with clean tongue, however, is not an infallible indication for Ipecacuanha, for we sometimes find it in connection with worm symptoms, where Cina has it just as prominently, and is the remedy. Digitalis also has it in heart disease. Ipecacuanha affects the whole intestinal tract. One very characteristic symptom is that the stomach and bowels feel as if relaxed and hanging down.
There are three kinds of looseness of the bowels, or rather three characteristic stools:
1. Fermented stools-foamy, like yeast.
2. Grass-green stools -mucous or watery.
3. Slimy stools -dysenteric, with more or less blood.
All these stools are found very often in children, especially in summer time, often as a consequence of overeating or wrong eating, when a dose of Ipecacuanha 200th will set matters to rights, and prevent the little patient from running into so-called cholera-infantum or enterocolitis, which often becomes a very serious and obstinate affection. The characteristic nausea is a sure indication.
We will also find this nausea present, where this remedy is the "proper caper," in headaches. Headache, as if bruised, all through the bones of the head, and down into the root of the tongue. This kind of headache may be of rheumatic origin, but the nausea is there just the same, if Ipecacuanha is to cure. Then we have a sick headache of gastric origin, the nausea beginning before the pain in the head, and continuing all through. In what seems to be hydrocephaloid with this nausea, Ipecacuanha has often cleared up the whole case in a few hours.
Again, we find the nausea accompanying the cough in the affections of the respiratory organs. Also in the hæmorrhages and in the fevers in which it is often indicated. In short, we cannot do better than to use Hering's expression: "Nausea, distressing, constant, with almost all complaints, as if from the stomach, with empty eructations, accumulation of much saliva, qualmishness and efforts to vomit," nothing relieves.
During the nausea, the face is generally pale, eyes sunken, with blue margins, and often there is more or less twitching of face and lips, and sleepiness after vomiting. We have a great many remedies that are powerful emetics, like Antimonium tartaricum, Zinc sulphate, Lobelia and Apomorphine; but, so far as I know, the nausea is not so persistent, nor is it found in connection with so many other affections. Of course, no single symptom, however strong, would justify a prescription, if there were other symptoms just as strong in the same case.
For instance, if there were burning in the stomach, intense thirst, but could not drink, great restlessness and prostration, we would think of Arsenicum album, and it is often the best remedy to follow Ipecac., if the case goes from bad to worse.
Ipecacuanha affects the mucous lining of the respiratory organs, almost as prominently as it does that of the alimentary tract.
There is a great accumulation of mucus, which loads up the air cells and bronchi, until there seems to be great danger of suffocation. Note the symptoms:
"Violent degree of dyspna, with wheezing and great weight and anxiety about the prcordia." (Antimon. tart., coarse rattling.) "Threatened suffocation from accumulation of mucus."
This excessive accumulation of mucus in the air passages seems to excite spasm like a foreign body, and an asthma, or spasmodic cough, or both together, ensue. But the spasmodic cough and asthma do not seem to all depend upon accumulation of mucus, for Ipecacuanha is often our best remedy in the first stage of both asthma and whooping cough, before the stage when the mucus is present.
Again, "Suffocating cough, whereby the child becomes quite stiff and blue in the face."
"Whooping cough, with nosebleed (Indigo), bleeding from the mouth, vomiting, loses breath, turns pale or blue, and becomes rigid."
Infantile pneumonia. with chest loaded with mucus, rapid, wheezing respiration, surface blue, face pale, finds a very effectual remedy in Ipecacuanha. Old people with emphysema form chronic asthma are also > by Ipecac. So that we might narrow down the respiratory troubles to two conditions:
1st, Those in which excessive accumulation of mucus characterized the case.
2nd, Those in which spasm was the characteristic feature.
Of course, all the symptoms must be taken into consideration, in order to differentiate between Ipecacuanha and other remedies having the same objective states and conditions.
The control that this remedy has over hæmorrhages deserves honorable mention It has hæmorrhages from the nose, stomach, rectum, womb, lungs and bladder; from all the orifices of the body. So does Crotalus, but the blood in Ipecacuanha is bright red, not decomposed. Sulphuric acid also has hæmorrhages from all the outlets of the body, but the other attending symptoms are different. With Ipecacuanha, the hæmorrhages are active, profuse, bright red. It is a better remedy than Secale ever was or can be, for post-partum hæmorrhages, and it is not necessary to use it in large and poisonous doses, for it will stop them in the 200th potency, and is quicker in its action than Secale. Let us notice a few remedies for hæmorrhages:
Ipecacuanha. Bright red, profuse, with heavy breathing and nausea.
Aconitum. Active, bright, with great fear and anxiety.
Arnica. From injuries, bodily fatigue, physical exertion.
Belladonna. Blood hot, throbbing carotid, congestion to head.
Carbo vegetabilis. Almost entire collapse, pale face, wants to be fanned.
China. Great loss of blood, ringing in ears, faintness.
Crocus. Blood clots in long, dark strings.
Ferrum. Partly fluid, partly solid, very red face, or red and pale alternately.
Hyoscyamus. Delirium, and jerking, and twitching of muscles.
Lachesis. Blood decomposed, sediment like charred straw.
Crotalus, Elaps and Sulphuric acid. Black fluid blood, the first and last from all outlets.
Nitric acid. Active hæmorrhages of bright blood.
Phosphorus. Profuse and persistent, even from small wounds and tumors.
Platinum. Partly fluid, acid partly hard black clots.
Pulsatilla. Intermittent hæmorrhages.
Secale. Passive flow in feeble, cachectic women.
Sulphur. In psoric constitutions; other remedies fail.
Other remedies and indications might be added here, but hæmorrhage is only one symptom, and never alone furnishes a reliable indication for any remedy. But Ipecacuanha is one of the best if indicated.
Ipecacuanha is a well-known intermittent fever remedy in our school. Jahr recommends it in the beginning of all cases, unless there are special indications for some other remedy, and says "By pursuing this course I have cured many cases of fever and ague by the first prescription, thus saving myself a good deal of unnecessary seeking and comparing." Whatever may be said in condemnation of this loose prescribing, it is certainly preferable to the inevitable Quinine prescription of the old school, and some self-styled homopaths, for the reason that it will cure more cases than Quinine, and do infinitely less harm. Ipecac. can cure more cases than Quinine, but both can cure the case to which they are homopathic, and that in the potentized form of the drug. We have such clear-cut indications for the use of many remedies that we need not fail once where the allopaths do twenty times, with their indiscriminate Quinine treatment.
The whole case generally revolves around one to three guiding symptoms, for instance: Ipecac. The persistent nausea in one or all stages.
Arsenicum alb. Irregularly developed paroxysm; thirst intense during heat, for small quantities.
Eupator. perf. Bone pains; vomits bile at end of chill, 7 to 9 A. M.
Ignatia. Chill, with red face, > by external heat: frequent sighing.
Capsicum. Chill begins between shoulder blades and spreads.
Nux vomica. During heat can't uncover in least, without chill.
Nat. Mur. Chill 10 to 11 A. M.; bursting headache during heat; sweat >; after Quinine.
Rhus tox. Cough in chill; restless and dry tongue in heat; tossing about.
Podophyllum. Great loquacity during chill and heat; jaundice.
Antimonium tart. Great sleepiness during heat and sweat, with pale face.
These characteristics are genuine and reliable, and many more might be added if we had time and space, but they can all be found in H C Allen's work on Fevers. They show how different the remedies, and how particular the true prescriber must be, when selecting his remedy for this, as well as other diseases. Remittents also often come under the control of this remedy.
Great accumulation of mucus in the air passages, with coarse rattling with inability to expectorate; impending paralysis of lungs.
Face very pale or cyanotic from unoxidized blood.
Great coma or sleepiness in most complaints.
Vomiting, intense nausea, with prostration; general coldness, cold sweat and sleepiness.
Trembling; internal, head and hands.
Thick eruptions like pocks, often pustular; as large as a pea.
Modalities: > from expectoration.
Both ends of life, childhood and old age; clings to those around; wants to be carried; cries and whines if any one touches it; will not let you feel the pulse.
* * * * *
Antimonium tartaricum is another powerful emetic. I can remember the time when the old allopaths used it almost as generally as the botanics did Lobelia inflata, to "clean out the stomach." Now-a-days, washing out the stomach by lavage, and the rectum and colon by enemas, according to "Hall's method," is quite fashionable, and is withal much more sensible, inasmuch as they are so lame in their therapeutics.
Notwithstanding these improvements, there is still a great deal of "gut scraping" going on in the name of "cleaning out the system," as though the alimentary canal was not a self-cleaning institution, if kept, or put into a healthy condition, but must be regularly "gone through" once in about so often, on the "house cleaning" principle. To be sure it is folly, but they do the best they know. Neither Antimonium tart. nor any other emetic is used by us for emetic purposes from a therapeutic standpoint.
Our therapeutic uses of it are the same as those of any other remedy, on the principle of similia similibus curantur. The nausea of this remedy is as intense as that of Ipecacuanha, but not so persistent, and there is relief after vomiting. I have found it nearest a specific (of course we know there is no absolute specific for any disease) for cholera morbus of any remedy. For more than twenty-five years, I have seldom found it necessary to use any other, and then only when there were severe cramps in the stomach and bowels, when Cuprum metallicum relieved.
It has the nausea, vomiting, loose stools, prostration, cold sweat, and stupor or drowsiness found in almost all bad cases of this disease, and I have seldom been obliged to give more than two or three doses, one after each vomiting, before the case was relieved. It is not generally recommended in the text-books for this ailment, but is a gem, as I know from abundant experience and observation.
If Antimonium tart. possessed only the one power of curing, that it does upon the respiratory organs, it would be indispensable. No matter what the name of the trouble, whether it be bronchitis, pneumonia, whooping cough or asthma, if there is great accumulation of mucus with coarse rattling, or filling up with it, but, at the same time, there seems to be inability to raise it, Tartar emetic is the first remedy to be thought of. This is true in all ages and constitutions, but particularly so in children and old people.
There is one symptom that is very apt to be present in these cases, and that is, great drowsiness or sleepiness, sometimes amounting to coma. This is found, not only in diseases of the respiratory organs, but in cholera infantum, cholera morbus and intermittent fever. In pneumonia, both Tartar emetic and Opium may have great sleepiness but there is no need for any confusion here as to choice, for in Opium; the face is dark red or purple, and there may be sighing or stertorous respiration. With Tartar emetic the face is always pale, or cyanotic, with no redness, and the breathing is not stertorous.
Three remedies are remarkable for sleepiness, viz.: Opium; Tartar emetic and Nux moschata, but aside from this one symptom they are not alike. Antimonium tart. is also one of our best remedies for hepatization of lungs remaining after pneumonia. There is dullness on percussion, and lack or absence of respiratory murmur, and shortness of breath, and patient continues pale, weak and sleepy.
If Sulphur should not promote absorption in such a case, Tartar emetic will often do it. I have used it from the 200th to the c. m. potencies with equally good results.
Burning of mouth, tongue, throat, clear down into stomach, and of anus if there is diarrha.
Vomiting of stringy, glairy, ropy mucus; hangs in strings down to receptacle on the floor.
Gastric or hepatic sick headaches with blur before the eyes at the beginning. Vomiting sour, or bitter.
* * * * *
Iris is another remedy which causes great nausea and vomiting. It is sometimes very serviceable in cholera infantum. The substance vomited is generally very sour, so sour that it excoriates the throat.
The gastric troubles of this remedy are often accompanied with a burning of tongue, throat, sophagus and stomach, and, if diarrha is present, with burning of the anus. This burning of the alimentary canal is very characteristic of this drug.
The vomiting is not always sour, but may be bitter or sweetish There is also profuse flow of saliva. I once had a case of stomach trouble in a middle-aged lady. She had frequent attacks of vomiting of a stringy, glairy mucus which was very ruby, would hang in strings from her mouth to the receptacle on the floor. Then the substance vomited became dark-colored; like coffee grounds. She became very weak, vomited all nourishment. She also had profuse secretion of ropy saliva. Thinking she had cancer of the stomach, she made her will and set her house in order, to die. Kali bichromicum was given with no benefit whatever, but Iris cured her completely in a short time and she remains well ten years since.
Iris is also one of our best remedies for sick headache. These headaches seem to be of gastric or hepatic origin, and often begin with a blur before the eyes. I used to give the remedy in the 3d.; but of late years have given it in the 50m. and am better pleased with the result, because it is more prompt and lasting. It is recommended in sciatica, but I have had no experience with it in this affection It seems to act most powerfully upon the alimentary tract. I have never used it in skin troubles.
Pain beginning in occiput; spreads over the head and settles over the right eye, with nausea and vomiting. Sensitive to noise and light.
Loose cough with badly smelling sputa; the breath and sputa smell badly to the patient himself.
Pain in right arm and shoulder; worse at night in bed; cannot raise the arm. Also pain in places where the bones are the least covered.
Heat and tension behind sternum. Cough day and night with great emaciation.
Burning and pressing in breast, followed by heat through abdomen and diarrha. Acts intensely on right lung and chest.
* * * * *
Sick headache. Pain commences in the back of the head, rises and spreads over the head, and settles down over the right eye (left eye, Spigelia), with nausea and vomiting; patient wants to be in a dark room and perfectly quiet. I have made some fine cures in long-standing cases of habitual sick headaches of this kind with this remedy. It will probably cure, or greatly relieve, the ordinary American sick headache as often as any other remedy. I use the 200th. Loose cough, with badly smelling sputa; the breath and sputa smelling badly to the patient himself. There is sometimes a pain behind the sternum (Kali hydroid.). This kind of cough usually comes on after a severe bronchitis or pneumonia, and it looks as though the patient were fast running into consumption. There may also be flushes of fever with circumscribed redness of the cheeks, like hectic fever. Many a case of this kind has been helped by this remedy. Dr. T. L Brown used the first trituration of the alkaloid with fine effect. The 200th has made just as good cures. In typhoid pneumonia with great dyspna and circumscribed redness of the cheeks, Sanguinaria has, in my hands, done good service. The right lung seems to come markedly under its influence, either in acute or chronic troubles. "Rheumatic pain in right arm and shoulder, worse at night in bed, cannot raise the arm." This condition has often been relieved by this remedy in my hands and has won me much credit. I have seen one dose of the first trituration cure such cases of long standing. I have seen the c. m. do the same thing. Flashes of heat, with hot palms and soles, at the climacteric find a remedy in Sanguinaria. Sometimes indicated after Sulphur and Lachesis have failed, especially if the circumscribed redness of the cheeks appears.
Drowsy, apathetic; unconscious of all surroundings but can be aroused to full consciousness.
Chronic effects of grief; hair turns gray; hopeless, haggard look.
Grows too fast and too tall; young persons with growing pains in bones.
Great physical and mental weakness from ovarian or sexual excesses.
Diarrha WHITE, watery, painless, with rumbling; meteorism; but not so much weakness as would be expected.
Very profuse, watery, or milky urine.
Modalities: < bad news, depressing emotions; masturbation or sexual excess, draft; wind; snowy air; > after short sleep.
Headache of school girls from eye strain, or overuse of eyes, occipital. Chest, weak from talking or coughing; cough, purulent, offensive expectoration, and pains in chest. Salty expectoration in proving.
* * * * *
The leading characteristic of this remedy lies in its effects upon the sensorium. "He lies in a stupor or in a stupid sleep, unconscious of all that is going on around him, but when aroused is fully conscious." This is Phosphoric acid in its intensest degree, as found in typhoid fever, in which it is one of our best remedies. But it is not alone here that the sensorial depression appears. It may he found in a lesser degree, in the results of depressing emotions, like grief at the loss of a friend, lover, property or position, and the effect seems to be even deeper rooted than in those cases which call for Ignatia. (See also Lachesis.) The subject seems stupefied with grief. There is not, the nervous twitching of Ignatia, but a settled despair, general weakness or prostration. The hair turns gray, and a weary, worn and haggard, hopeless look obtains. I have succeeded in curing such a case when Ignatia failed. In such a case the patient sometimes complains of a pain like a crushing weight on the vertex, or, again, of pain in the occiput or nape of the neck, and with both they appear physically weak, or exhausted, want to lie down, don't want company, or to be noticed or spoken to. We often find this sensorial depression in connection with the effects of onanism or excessive coition. The patient is disturbed by the culpability of his indulgence, grieves over it, is inclined to sink into despair. This is true of both sexes, and the depression is much worse if the patient is growing too fast, or is overtaxed mentally or physically. With Calcarea carb. they grow too fat, with Phosphoric acid too fast and tall. We have in Phosphoric acid a remedy for the headache of students, especially of those who are growing, too fast. It is a sin to keep such young people bowing down to hard study, and while it is true that youth is the time to get an education it is also true that it is the time when too great a strain in that direction may utterly wreck and forever incapacitate a mind which might, with more time and care, have been a blessing to the world.
Now Phosphoric acid, properly exhibited, may be of incalculable benefit in such cases. It will sometimes be a choice between Phosphoric acid and Natrum muriaticum or Calcarea phos., the other symptoms must decide.
In regard to the use of Phosphoric acid in typhoids, there are no other remedies exactly like it in its depressing effect on the sensorium. Arnica has its apathy or indifference; but the Arnica depression is more profound, as is also that of Baptisia, for they both go to sleep while answering a question, showing how overpowering is the stupor. Then with the former we have petechiæ or ecchymosis, which is not found under Phosphoric acid, and under the, latter the tendency to, decomposition of the fluids as found in the terribly offensive stools and urine.
Opium surpasses them all in its stupefying powers, and the face, breathing and general appearance, is not at all, like Phosphoric acid.
Rhus tox, and Hyoscyamus are very stupid also, but in other respects are very different. The description of these remedies is found under each, as we have written of their use in typhoids. Nux moschata ought also to be mentioned in this connection.
We must not forget the action of Phosphoric acid upon the bowels. It does not exhibit any peculiar characteristic action upon the stomach, but does in the abdominal region, as the following well-verified symptoms show: "Meteoristic distention of the abdomen; rumbling and gurgling and noise as from watery, painless stools." "Diarrha white, or yellow, watery, chronic or acute, without pain or any marked debility or exhaustion." Now, it seems very singular that, after so much talk about the general depression or weakness of this remedy, we should be obliged to record that the profuse and sometimes long-continued diarrha should not debilitate, as a characteristic symptom. Well, there are a good many unaccountable things, in both disease and therapeutics, and this is one of them, but the fact remains and we act upon it. Let us remember that the profound weakness and depression of Phosphoric acid is upon the sensorium and nervous system, and will be there whether diarrha is present or not. It is markedly so in typhoids, as I can fully attest from abundant observation. China debilitates by its diarrha or loss of fluids generally. Phosphoric acid attacks the nervous system primarily, even in onanism, and its results or effects are not so much the loss of semen as a vital fluid, as under China, the nervous system suffering very much, even though the emissions be neither very frequent nor profuse.
Young boys even suffer from the effects of the orgasm of onanism before there is much or any semen secreted. This is well to remember in a choice between these two remedies. There is a condition in which I have found this remedy very valuable, especially in men. The leading symptom is a "weak feeling in the chest from talking." You remember Stannum has this symptom very strongly (also Sulphur) and may lead us into a wrong prescription if only the one symptom were considered. If the patient is a young man, married or single; if, again, he seems weak in mind, listless, apathetic, reticent; if he is growing fast; all these things would indicate Phosphoric acid, and the proper use of it might save him from consumption, for many go into it in this way. If he has cough with expectoration, under Phosphoric acid, it will be copious, purulent, offensive; under Stannum, thick, heavy and of sweetish taste. All this condition of things may, when Phosphoric acid is the remedy, find its cause in one or both of two things: Onanism or sexual excess, and too rapid growth. Phosphoric acid has two very marked peculiarities in the urine, viz.,: very profuse and clear, watery, or milky urine.
The first is found with general nervous depression, and if there is headache it is like Gelsemium relieved by the flow of urine. The other is from excess of phosphates in the urine, indicating nerve waste. We must distinguish between the profuse urine of Ignatia and Phosphoric acid, for the first is hysterical, the latter not at all so.
Moaning or sliding down in bed from excessive weakness. (Typhoid).
Tongue dry, leathery and shrunken; one-third its natural size. (Typhoid).
Hæmorrhoids: Swollen and blue, and so sensitive to touch that they cannot bear the contact of the sheet.
Great debility; as soon as he sits down his eyes close; lower jaw hangs down; slides down in bed.
Malignant affections of mouth; Ulcers, deep, dark, base bluish, offensive, foul breath.
Diarrha: Stool involuntary while urinating. Cannot urinate without having bowels move at the same time.
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This remedy, also one of our best remedies in typhoids, is found useful in cases of lower grade than in the Phosphoric acid case. It comes nearer to Carbo vegetabilis than any other remedy.
Its indications are given in "Hering's Guiding Symptoms" as well as anywhere. There is decomposition of fluids; the stools are involuntary while passing urine; stools dark, thin, or hæmorrhage of dark liquid blood. Mouth full of dark-bluish ulcers; unconscious. Moaning and sliding down in the bed from excessive weakness; lower jaw fallen, tongue dry, leathery and shrunken to a third of its natural size, and paralyzed; pulse weak and intermittent. It is hardly possible to draw a picture of a more desperate case of typhoid than this. It is not necessary to resort to quinine, brandy or any other fashionable so-called stimulants. Broth, milk or oatmeal gruel for nourishment, and Muriatic acid will do all that can be done for the saying of the life of such a patient, and will do it quicker and with less liability to relapse than any other course of treatment. Of course the friends are anxious, even desperate, and a show of work must be made. If much pressure is brought to bear in the way of suggestions or demands for counsel, all sorts of wonderful prescriptions that cured a great many cases like this, let Sac. lac. be given every five minutes. It is a wonderfully quieting medicine (to friends and meddlers) and should never be omitted. Send the most rampant howler off on horseback miles away, if you can, for something, no matter what. That is indispensable to the patient's recovery. The greatest danger to the patient is, that the physician losing his presence of mind, will suffer himself to be led or driven away from the only true helpful course. This advice is given only to those who need it. Many a patient has died because his physician "lost his head" under this kind of pressure.
Muriatic acid is very useful in hæmorrhoids, swollen and blue, and so sensitive to touch that they cannot bear the contact of the sheet.
Rectum prolapses easily (Ignatia, Ruta), cannot urinate without it coming down. Also when wind is passed or bowels move.
Bladder weak, urine passes slowly, or must press until rectum protrudes.
Cannot bear the least touch, not even sheet on genitals (Murex).
Has a particular affinity for mucous outlets, where skin and membranes join; cracks; rhagades fissures.
Pricking pains as of a splinter in the parts.
Urine strong smelling; like horse urine.
Hæmorrhages from all outlets of the body; blood bright red.
Pricking ulcers; excrescences; condylomata; figwarts (sycosis).
Nervous, irritable, dark complexioned persons.
Modalities: > riding in carriage.
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Nitric acid is one of our most effective antidotes to the effects of allopathic dosing with mercury in syphilis. For the other bad effects of the abuse of mercury other remedies are better, notably, Hepar sulphur. calc., Nitric acid have a particular affinity for the outlets of mucous surfaces, where the skin and membrane join, such as the mouth (corners), nose and anus. In the mouth we find the corners cracked, ulcerated and scabby, also aphthæ, stomatitis with ptyalism, swelling of the gums, ftor oris, etc.
If Mercurius has already been used without avail Nitric acid follows well and will often cure.
This ulcerated, swollen and spongy condition of the gums will extend into the throat, and if it is the result of combined syphilis and mercurialization of the old school Nitric acid is the first remedy. The action of this remedy is just as positive upon the other outlet of the alimentary canal.
The anus is cracked and fissured similarly (Ratanhia), and hæmorrhoids protrude, crack, bleed and are very sore. No remedy has more decided action upon the anus, and one very characteristic symptom is, "great pain after passage of stool, even soft stool." He walks the floor in agony of pain for an hour or two after a stool (Ratanhia). In dysentery this symptom distinguishes this remedy from Nux vomica, which is relieved after stool and Mercurius, which has tenesmus all the time, or before, during and after stool.
Another very strong characteristic of this remedy in all these affection is, "Pricking pain as of a splinter in the part." Nitric acid has hæmorrhages from all outlets of the body, and the blood is generally bright red. It is especially so in typhoid and hæmorrhoids. Nitric acid is one of our best remedies in chronic diarrha. It is one of the celebrated trio viz.,: Thuja, Staphisagria. and Nitric acid for condylomata. It is one of three remedies having very offensive odor to the urine, viz.:
Benzoic acid, Nitric acid and Sepia.
Benzoic acid, urine is very dark with very intense urinous odor.
Nitric acid, dark, smelling like horse urine.
Sepia, offensive and sourish.
Extreme weakness, with sense of internal trembling, which is not observable to others.
Hæmorrhages from every outlet of the body, with ecchymosed spots under the skin.
Child smells sour all over, despite. the actual cleanliness. Sour, acid vomiting.
Adapted to the light haired, old people, especially women; flushes of heat in climacteric years.
Aphthæ, of mouth, gums, or entire buccal cavity, gums bleed readily; ulcers painful; offensive breath. Bad effects from mechanical injuries, with bruises, chafing and livid skin; prostration.
Sensation as if the brain was loose in forehead and falling from side to side (Bell., Bry., Rhus, Spig.). Often very useful in the stomach troubles of old whiskey topers.
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Sulphuric acid is another remedy of value in aphthous affections of the mouth. It is particularly efficacious in greatly debilitated subjects, and in children with marasmus with this kind of mouth. There is often present sour stomach (Iris versicol. and Robinia, sour eructations and vomiting) with sour, vomiting, and the child smells sour all over despite the greatest care in regard to cleanliness (Rheum, Hepar and Magnesia). One of the strongest characteristics, perhaps the strongest, in weakened subjects in which this is the appropriate remedy, is a sense of internal trembling. This is a subjective symptom, for, notwithstanding this positive sensation, to a degree that is very distressing, there is no visible trembling. This symptom is frequently found in old topers (see Ranunculus bulb.), who are broken down or almost wrecked in health by strong drink. The symptom, however, is not confined to such subjects, but is often found in other cases when the debility is traceable to other causes; when markedly present from whatever cause. Sulphuric acid should never be forgotten. We have already spoken of the value of this remedy in purpura hæmorrhagica. Like Crotalus, it has hæmorrhages from every outlet of the body (Acetic acid, Thlaspi), and the blood also settles in ecchymosed spots under the skin. This last symptom would indicate that Sulphuric acid might be useful in black and blue spots in the skin, as the result of bruising, and practice corroborates it, and it follows well after Arnica. Ledum palustre is also one of our best remedies for ecchymosis from bruises, "black eye," for instance; this is, of course, for bruises under the skin; While Ruta is just as efficacious for bruises of the periosteum. There is enough of the Sulphur element so that it may succeed in "flushes" of heat, after Sulphur has failed at the climacteric.
This is a comparatively new remedy, but has already, developed some valuable therapeutic powers. In the first place, it attacks the vital force, as is manifested by an excessive langour or persistent tired feeling all over the body, which is generally accompanied with corresponding weakness of mind, indifference, and want of will power, and a desire to lie down. There is great heaviness of the legs, can hardly lift them from the ground, tired, aching feeling in the back with some burning (Phosphorus and Zinc met.) at times low down. Even the brain is fagged and the slightest exertion or mental effort brings on headache. This headache is oftenest found in students, overworked business men, and in persons depressed by grief or other emotions.
It oftenest locates in occipito-cervical region (Nat. mur., Silicea). < especially by mental exertion. In short, this remedy presents a perfect picture of nervous prostration. I found this remedy very useful in apparent failure of brain power in an old man who had always been strong up to within a year or so of the time he called on me. He complained of heaviness in the occiput and inability to exert the mind to talk or think, and general tired "played out" feeling. I feared brain softening but I gave him Picric acid 6th trit. and it promptly cured him. This remedy has strong points of resemblance to Phosphoric acid and Phosphorus in its effects upon the sexual organs especially of the male. There is strong sexual desire with terrible erections, which is followed by corresponding weakness or complete impotence. There seems to be no doubt that it is destined to become one of our most valuable remedies for brain, spinal, and general nervous prostration, especially if connected with or arising from sexual excesses. It may be studied along with Gelsemium, Phosphoric acid, Phosphorus, Argentum nitricum, Sulphur, Alumina and Silicea and all those remedies affecting the brain, cord, and general nervous system.
Is another remedy whose great general characteristic is: Great weakness, want of energy, prostration. The subjects of it are often disposed to glandular swellings, indurations and suppurations.
Benignant suppurations are inclined to become ichorous. The swellings to become schirrous in character.
The swellings seem to have a choice for the axillary, inguinal or mammary regions. Then the sexual organs come markedly under its influence. Old suppurating, bluish colored (Lach., Tarant. Cub.), offensive bubs. Menses too early and too long. Menorrhagia from chronic induration of the uterus; also in cachectic women with glandular swellings.
The flow always weakens so that she call hardly speak.
Mammary tumors in hard nodules in the breast.
Copper colored eruptions on the skin.
Weak ankles in children (Nat. c., Sil.).
Easily sprained from lifting (Calc. ost.).
Complete relaxation and prostration of the whole muscular system, with almost or entire motor paralysis. Eyelids droop; muscles refuse to obey the will.
Trembling of hands or lower extremities if he attempts to move; must lie still.
Mental faculties dull, cannot think; drowsy, with dull red face.
Susceptibility to mental disturbance, excitement or emotion; causes diarrha.
Dull, tired, prostrating headache at base of brain; wants head high, sometimes > by profuse urination.
Vertigo with blurred vision; dilated pupils; double sight; sense of intoxication.
Nervous chill, violent shaking with no sense of coldness.
Desire to be quiet; feels too weak to move.
Children: fear of falling, seize the nurse, grasp the crib, especially in intermittents.
Slow, weak pulse of old age.
Great heaviness of the eyelids; cannot keep them open.
Fears that unless constantly on the move, the heart will cease beating.
General deep-seated muscular pain with prostration (la grippe).
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This remedy affects, primarily, the whole nervous system. the most prominent symptom, as we are in the habit of recording the effects of remedies, is "complete relaxation and prostration of the whole muscular system, with almost or quite entire motor paralysis." This muscular prostration seems to come through inability of the nerves to convey impressions; thus we have the symptom "muscles will not obey the will." This condition comes on gradually, the first symptom being a feeling of lassitude or general fatigue. He wants to lie down he feels so weak (Picric acid), and is inclined to drowsiness; the pulse becomes weak and slow, but is accelerated on the least motion. Then, if he attempts to walk, the legs tremble, or the hands tremble if he attempts to lift them, the tongue trembles if he attempts to protrude it; all this from weakness, both objective and subjective. If I were to put one adjective before this remedy to indicate its chief characteristic I would call it the trembling remedy. Sometimes this trembling is so severe as to actually shake the patient like a chill, but there is no chill, objective or subjective. This weakness may increase to the stage of complete paralysis, and such symptoms as these appear: The eyelids droop (Sepia, Caust.) until they are completely closed. The fingers become unmanageable, so that he can no longer guide them over the keys of the piano in playing; he cannot guide his feet where he wants to in trying to walk, notwithstanding the sensorium remains clear, with perhaps the exception of a little drowsiness. He knows perfectly well what he wants to do, it cannot do it.
Then again, there may be neuralgia in various parts, and the pains may be a dull aching all over (myalgia), or they may be sudden and darting, so acute as to cause sudden starting. Or, again, it may cause spasms or convulsions; but with all these there is the characteristic prostration, for instance, in prosopalgia the eyelids droop from weakness. So we repeat Gelsemium is pre-eminently a nerve remedy.
Having shown the central action of this great remedy as it manifests itself upon the nervous system, we will proceed to notice some of its local uses which will always be more or less associated with such action. Upon the mind it shows its depressing power, and is portrayed in such symptoms as these: The Gelsemium subject is torpid, sleepy and dreads movement. The mental faculties are dull, cannot think clearly or fix his attention: "desires to be quiet; does not wish to speak or have any one near her for company, even if the person be silent." This condition of mind is in perfect accordance with the general nervous prostration already described. This condition of mind sometimes is temporarily suspended to give place to an alternate condition of excitement. But this is not the leading, characteristic, and legitimate effect of the drug, but is only the reaction; like a state of sleeplessness is to the characteristic sleepiness or stupor of Opium. I consider the large doses of either remedy used by some to quiet excited conditions, or to control spasms or convulsions by their toxic, depressing, or paralyzing action on the muscular system, antipathyc and in no way truly curative.
There is an excessively sensitive condition of the nerves that is very peculiar, and that this remedy controls markedly, viz., susceptibility to mental disturbance, such as sudden excitement or emotion, bad news or fright, the anticipation of an unusual ordeal. One of the effects following these things is a diarrha. Many people are thus affected. Gelsemium not only cures the diarrha for the time being, but often cures the whole abnormal condition. I have never known the remedy to do much good in these conditions below the 30th potency, but often in the potencies much above that.
As would be naturally supposed from its general action upon the nervous system, this remedy exerts a decided influence upon the sensorium and brain. Dizziness, with blurred vision, pupils dilated, double sight and sense of intoxication, show this influence. One very characteristic symptom appears here which is found under only one other remedy with any prominence, viz., "child starts and grasps the nurse and screams, as if afraid of falling." If there is any difference between it and Borax, it is that in Borax the child manifests this fear only when it is being laid down in the cradle, or from downward motion.
The most characteristic headache of Gelsemium is a dull, tired headache at the base of the brain. The patient wants to lie with head raised upon a high pillow, and lie perfectly still. It is aggravated by mental labor, smoking tobacco, lying with the head low, and in the heat of the sun. (Glonoine, Lachesis, Lyssin, Natrum carb.). It is temporarily ameliorated by pressure and stimulants. Such headaches often follow a debauch. Sometimes we have a headache from passive congestion; then the pain begins in the occiput and spreads all over the head. The aggravations are about the same as in the other variety, or nervous headache. One notable characteristic is that sometimes the headache is relieved by a profuse flow of urine. (Lac defloratum has a profuse flow of urine during sick headache to which it is adapted, but the pain is not so markedly relieved by the flow). Gelsemium has also a sick headache that is preceded by blindness. As the head begins to ache the blindness disappears. The sick headache of this remedy is not accompanied with much nausea and vomiting, as is that of Sanguinaria, Iris versicolor and Lac defloratum, but is accompanied by the characteristic weakness and trembling belonging to this remedy. Gelsemium is one of the so-called fever remedies. It is useful in the remittent fever of children. The fever is never of that active or violent form calling for Aconite or Belladonna, but of a milder form. The child lies drowsy, does not want to move, or, if it does, cannot move much on account of the weakness. One author says that Gelsemium stands midway between Aconite and Veratrum viride. I should rather place it between Baptisia and Belladonna. Like Baptisia, there is prostration, but the typhoid tongue and other symptoms are not so strong. There may be dark red face with both and a sort of besotted expression; but with Baptisia the sensorium comes more fully under the influence of the drug, so that the patient will fall asleep even when trying to answer questions. Then the offensive sweat, stool and urine of Baptisia are not found under Gelsemium. Like Belladonna, there is congestion to the brain and dilated pupils, but it is not so intense, accompanied by active or violent delirium as with Belladonna. Gelsemium is not a very great intermittent fever remedy; but is one of the best for nervous chill (Gelsemium chills run up and down the back in wave-like succession from sacrum to occiput; chill begins between scapulæ, Capsic., Sepia; chill begins in lumbar region, Eupat. purp. and Nat. m.; chill begins in dorsal region, Eupat. perf., Lach.); when there is great shaking and chattering of the teeth, with no objective, or even sense of coldness. Patient wants to be held because he shakes so." This kind of chill is frequently found in hysterical, and heart diseases (organic). The pulse of Gelsemium is slow when quiet, but greatly accelerated on motion. For the weak, slow pulse of old age there is no remedy oftener useful. For the nervous prostration already described, just preceding typhoid, there is nothing like Gelsemium. I have aborted many cases of typhoid fever with this remedy -at least I think so.
Mind confused; as if drunk; cannot collect himself; feels scattered about, cannot get pieces together.
Face dark, dusky; eyes bleared, besotted expression.
Mouth ulcerated, with foul smell; or, dry, tongue dry in a streak down the centre.
Abdomen sensitive in right iliac region, with rumbling.
Stool loose, and urine with all other discharges; very offensive.
Awakes with oppressed feeling, must have more air.
Great prostration with aching and soreness all over. Great typhoid remedy.
Can swallow liquids only; least solid food gags.
In whatever position the patient lies the parts rested upon feel sore and bruised. (Lach., Pyr.).
* * * * *
Baptisia tinctoria will quite naturally come in here, as it is often indicated after the Gelsemium stage is over in fevers. Typhoid fever can be aborted under proper homopathic treatment, no matter what the old school says to the contrary. I have had but one case of typhoid fever run its full course in seven years, and that was a case of a young lady whose mother tried to treat her, until the disease was fully established. The symptoms indicating Baptisia are, in the first stage, great nervousness, chilliness, aching pains all over, but especially in head, back and limbs, and a sensation of soreness all over; feels as if bruised. Then the patient grows weak, prostrated, drowsy, becomes confused, the face and eyes suffused so as to give it a "besotted appearance"; the sensorium is so blunted that the patient falls asleep even before he can answer a question, or while he is in the middle of an answer. Then the tongue becomes streaked down the middle, at first white, even becomes brown in a well-defined streak down the middle, and as he comes more fully under the typhoid influence he mutters and reaches about the bed, tossing to and fro, and if he says anything he says he feels "scattered around the bed and is trying to get the pieces together." Now the bowels begin to rumble, especially in the ilio-cæcal region, which is also sensitive to touch; later still the bowels begin to discharge, and all the discharges (stool, urine and sweat) are extremely offensive. This is a true picture of a Baptisia typhoid, and I have aborted in the first stage many cases and even checked their progress (in other cases) and cured them when they had been running eight to twelve days. I have used both the low and high preparations with equal success, but now use the 30th potency.
This one of Schuessler's tissue remedies has proven a valuable remedy in some inflammatory diseases. In keeping with its element of Iron, it presents the local congestion tendencies of that remedy; and in its Phosphorus element its affinity for the lungs and stomach; and in its combination proves a great hæmorrhage remedy. The hæmorrhages are of bright blood, and may come from any outlet of the body. Further proving and clinical use will enable us to use it more scientifically then we now do. So far as I have observed, it is not adapted to the full-blooded, sanguine, arterial subjects, with an overplus of red blood that Aconite cures, but rather to pale, anæmic subjects, who with all their weaknesses are nevertheless subject to sudden and violent local congestions and inflammations, like pneumonia, or sudden congestions to head, bowels, or any other part, or to inflammatory affections of a rheumatic character. It is only useful in the first stage of such attacks, before the stage of exudation appears. It has been found useful also in the above-described weakened or anæmic subjects who have sour eructations occurring in stomach troubles, usually termed dyspeptic. In dysentery, in the first stage with a good deal of blood in the discharges, it is very valuable, and often cures in a very short time.
Again, it is often efficacious in the night sweats of the weak and anæmic. I am sorry not to be able to give characteristic indications for the use of this remedy, but I am fully persuaded that is a very valuable one and ought to receive a thoroughly Hahnemannian proving.
A narrow, well developed red streak right through the middle of the tongue.
Intense fever, with twitching and tendency to spasms.
* * * * *
Veratrum viride is another remedy which at one time had a great reputation in the first or congestive stage of inflammatory diseases, and especially in those organs coming under the control of the pneumogastric nerve, viz., pharynx, sophagus, stomach and heart. For a time the journals fairly bristled with reported cures of pneumonia, and its curative power was attributed to the influence of the remedy to control the action of heart and pulse. It was claimed that if we could control the quickened circulation so as to decrease the amount of blood forced into the congested lung, that you thereby gave the lung a chance to free itself of the existing engorgement.
It looked plausible, and certainly in many cases remarkable cures were effected, and that in a short time. I was a young physician and thought I had found a prize in this remedy. But one day I left a patient, relieved by this remedy of an acute and violent attack of pneumonia, to go to a town five miles distant, and when I returned found my patient dead. Then I watched others treated with this remedy, and found every little while a patient with pneumonia dropping out suddenly when they were reported better.
Now we don't hear so much of Veratrum vir. as the greatest remedy for the first stage of this disease. What was the matter? 1st. It was (like other fads) used too indiscriminately. 2d. It is not desirable (it is wrong) to control or depress the pulse, regardless of all the other conditions. 3d. The patients, who had weak hearts, were killed by this powerful heart depressant. A quickened circulation is salutary, in all inflammatory diseases, and is evidence that the Natural power to resist disease is there, and at work. The pulse will come to its normality when the cause of its disturbance is removed and never should be forced to do so until then. Here is a common fault of the old school notwithstanding their cry of "Tolle causam." So I find fault with Guernsey's keynote, "Great activity of the arterial system; very quick pulse." Next to Digitalis, Veratrum viride slows the pulse, as is abundantly shown in the provings. If quick pulse is ever a result of this remedy, it is a secondary or reactionary effect, like the sleeplessness of Opium or constipation of cathartics. So it seems to me that as an antiphlogistic (forgive me) it must go into the shade with the once vaunted Digitalis.
Then what is Veratrum viride good for? Well, I do not think that its sphere is yet fully defined, or can be without further provings and verification. The provings are already carried far enough to show that it must be a very powerful and useful remedy. That it inflames the sophagus or stomach is well known, as is the fact that it congests the brain and lungs, but what are the characteristic symptoms that will enable us to prescribe this remedy in preference to the other remedies that do the same thing is not so well known. One peculiar symptom I believe to be characteristic, and which I have verified in a very severe case of erysipelas, which was accompanied by great delirium, is "a narrow, well-defined red streak right through the middle of the tongue." Again I believe Veratrum viride to be one of our best remedies for spasms, twitchings and convulsions, but do not know of any very reliable symptoms guiding us to its selection in the individual case. I once cured a man of a very severe and persistent attack of vomiting, which was aggravated on rising, with this remedy. He had suffered from several similar attacks before, but never any after this one, now several years ago.
Collapse, with general coldness and cold sweat, especially on forehead; hippocratic face.
Mania, with desire to cut and tear things, with lewdness, lascivious talk, religious or amorous.
Disposed to silence, but if irritated gets mad. Scolds, calls names and talks of faults of others.
Rice water stools, profuse, exhausting, cramps in calves, coldness, collapse.
Rheumatic affections < in damp weather; drives patient out of bed.
The pains are maddening, driving the patient to delirium.
Copiousness of discharges: stools, vomiting, urine, saliva, sweat; craving for acids or refreshing things.
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Here is a remedy that has a characteristic "Cold sweat on the forehead". It makes no difference whether it is cholera, cholera infantum, pneumonia, asthma, typhoid fever or constipation; if this symptom is prominently present, and the patient is in anything like a faint, collapse, or greatly prostrated condition, Veratrum album is the first remedy to think of. It is one of Hahnemann's trio of remedies for Asiatic cholera, Camphor and Cuprum metallicum being the other two; and today his indications for its use stand as true as when he first gave them to the profession. It abides the test because it is founded upon a natural law of cure, which is the same "yesterday, today, and forever."
Veratrum, alb. has some very strong mind symptoms. "Mania with desire to cut and tear things especially clothes, with lewdness and lascivious talk, religious or amorous."
Here the choice will sometimes have to be made between this remedy and Stramonium. They are both very loquacious, and both strongly religious. Also both at times very violent; but the face of Stramonium is generally very red and bloated, while that of Veratrum is likely to be pale, sunken or hippocratic; again, there is greater general weakness with Veratrum. Sometimes the violent form of mania alternates with a "disposition to silence," but if irritated gets mad, scolds, calls names and talks of the faults of others. These forms of mania are often consequent upon suppressed menses or the puerperal state. They may be acute or become chronic. In either case we may find the cure in Veratrum album.
If we were to describe in one word the general condition, as near as possible, for which this remedy was best, it would be collapse. Let me quote: "Rapid sinking of forces; complete prostration; cold sweat and cold breath." "Skill blue, purple, cold, wrinkled, remaining in folds when pinched". "Face hippocratic; nose pointed." "Whole body icy cold." "Cold skin, face cold, back cold." "Hands icy cold." "Feet and legs icy cold." (Icy coldness of surface, covered with cold sweat, Tabacum.) "Cramps in calves." All these are verified symptoms, and show to what an extreme degree of collapse a case may come and yet be cured. This condition may be found in rapidly progressing, acute cases like cholera, or it may be found in suppressed exanthemata; or, again, in the course of bronchitis, pneumonia, typhoid or intermittent fever. No matter where found, or in connection with whatever disease, if this collapse is present, and especially if the grand keynote, "cold sweat on face and forehead," is present, we may give this remedy with full confidence that it will do all that can be done and much more than the old school system of stimulation with alcoholics. In choleraic diseases Camphor comes nearest to Veratrum, but with Veratrum the stools are profuse and like rice-water, while they are scanty or entirely absent with Camphor. The pains of Veratrum are very severe sometimes, driving the patient to delirium. It is said to be a good remedy for rheumatism, which is worse in wet weather and which drives the patient out of bed (Ferrum met.). Veratrum is a remedy of wide range, because it covers a condition which may be found in so many different diseases.
Another remedy of not very wide range, so far as we have any clinical knowledge, but so far so we do know is invaluable.
We know of its use in the advanced stage of serious brain troubles, such as meningitis or any trouble of the brain where is threatened effusion, or effusion already present.
Symptoms: Head rolling from side to side on the pillow, with screams; great stupidity or soporous sleep; greedy drinking of water: wrinkled forehead with cold sweat; motion of jaws, as chewing something; dilated pupils, and often cannot be made to see or hear, or be made to sense anything at all; continual motion of one arm and leg, while the other lies as if paralyzed; urine scanty or entirely suppressed, sometimes sediment like coffee grounds. These symptoms indicate a desperate condition, and the patient will soon die comatose or in convulsions unless the proper remedy can be found.
Helleborus niger can often cure such cases, as I have often observed, not only in my own practice, but in that of others. I have sometimes observed that the first sign of improvement in such cases was a decided increase in the urine, and following it a general subsidence of all the other bad symptoms. I have used it with most prompt and satisfactory results in the 1000th (B. & T.) and 33m. (Fincke's) potencies.
Helleborus is also an excellent remedy in post-scarlatinal dropsies, which come on very rapidly. Here the coffee-grounds sediment may or may not be present. The choice is sometimes not easy between this remedy and Apis mellifica.
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