Chapter II. Special Remedies for the Brain and Spine.
Spinal Irritation. This is the least understood of any disease and one of the most common diseases among our American women. The symptoms are heat in the palms of the hands, tingling at the end of the toes at night in bed, a headache that begins at the back of the head and extends over to the frontal region. If we examine the spine we will find tender, sensitive spots. There is more or less indigestion, palpitation of the heart and the patient will complain that her back hurts her when she presses back against anything.
I was called when in New Hampshire to see a lady who had not been able to lie down in bed for several weeks. She sat in a rocking-chair all the time, and she could not sit still but kept rocking. She had all the symptoms mentioned above. Several doctors had treated her. Each one had a different diagnosis and treatment but none of them understood the case. I placed her upon the following treatment: Tincture Belladonna two drops once in three hours, Sulph. Quinine two grains before breakfast. Dialysed iron gtts. xx before dinner and supper. I also had the whole length of the spine painted with tincture iodine, a strip as wide as my two fingers night and morning, until it was so sore she could not bear it any longer. In a week she could lie in bed and sleep like other people. She finally recovered entirely.
Another case in Vermont afflicted with the same spinal complaint had been confined to her bed for some time. She had been under the treatment of the best doctors in that part of the State but they could not help her. She suffered severely with headaches as well as other symptoms of spinal irritation. None of the doctors seemed to understand her case and she had become practically bed-ridden. I began the treatment of this case with the same remedies as in the first case and cured her.
When I came to New Jersey twenty-seven years ago., about the first patient I had to treat was a lady with spinal irritation, who lived in one of the large cities of the State. The doctors had given her up as incurable. I treated her as I had treated the other cases and cured her and she has been free from the trouble ever since. There are many cases scattered over the country that I have cured of this condition and I trust the present generation of physicians will understand this disease and have better success with it than the past generation.
Spinal Meningitis. When there is throbbing pain in the spine, drowsiness, but cannot sleep, starts at every sound, belladonna is the remedy. Tincture belladonna, gtts. v; aqua, ounces iv. Mix. Sig. Teaspoonful once an hour. If the pulse is full, hard, and with tension to it, veratrum viride is the remedy. Tincture veratrum, gtts. x; aqua, ounces iv. Mix. Sig. Teaspoonful every hour. To relieve the nerve tension, pain in the legs, worse on motion, great thirst—drinking large quantities of water, bryonia is the remedy. Tincture bryonia gtts. v; aqua, ounces iv. Mix. Sig. Teaspoonful once in three hours.
Myelitis. In this disease when there is general weakness about the hips and loins, extending down the legs, a feeling of exhaustion, pains in small spots that come and go—worse by thinking of them, cold feet, oxalic acid, sixth decimal, is the remedy. Give two grains every three hours. When there is pain in the back, comes on suddenly, relieved by motion, attended by numbness, artemesia abrotanum, third decimal dilution, is the remedy. Put twenty drops in a glass of water and give a teaspoonful once an hour. When there is sudden loss of power in the extremities, knee jerk, rigidity of the legs, spastic gait—often tremulous, lathyrus sativus is the remedy. Give three tablets of the third decimal trituration night and morning.
In the tremors of multiple sclerosis hydrobromate hyoscyamus, third decimal trituration is indicated. It should be given in one grain doses every hour.
Strychnine, in any form, should never be given in any spinal irritation, congestion or inflammation because it is a spinal irritant. The spine is very sensitive to the smallest dose of strychnine and it will aggravate all the symptoms.
Cerebro Spinal Meningitis. My first recollection of this disease was in the early part of the Sixties in Maine, when we had an epidemic. They called it "Spotted Fever" in those days. The regular physicians treated it with morphine internally and ice applied to the spine. The result of such treatment was not very flattering to that School of Medicine. This is one of the epidemics that has swept over this country at different times and it has always found the eclectic physicians on the firing line. They have met the disease and conquered it.
In the first stage with fever, headache, etc., ferri phos. is a safe and reliable remedy to prescribe. Put five grains of the third decimal trituration in a glass of hot water and give a teaspoonful once in fifteen minutes for an hour; then a teaspoonful every half hour. For the drawing back of the neck, spasms of the back, rush of blood to the head, natrium sulph., third decimal is the remedy. Add five grains to a cup of hot water and give a teaspoonful every half hour in alternation with the ferri phos. If the patient is a child, in most cases the above treatment will cut short the acute symptoms. If the pulse goes down and the child seems weak and exhausted, give kali phos. sixth decimal. Put five grains in a cup of hot water and give a teaspoonful once in fifteen minutes; it will bring the pulse up and the general condition of the child will be improved. I have been able to control the spasms in small children, with the following prescription:
Rx Magnesia, Phos.
Kali Phos., a. a. grs. v.
Hot Water, ℥iv.
Mix. Sig. Teaspoonful every few minutes until it controls the spasms.
As a tonic calcarea phos. third decimal may be given. Dose three tablets once in three hours. It has been my practice to apply a mustard paste—equal parts of Indian meal and mustard mixed with warm water—the whole length of the spine. If you have libradol (Lloyd's) it may be applied to the spine until there is slight nausea. This is an excellent local application for pain. When there is redness of the face, eyes swollen—have a dull appearance, pupils dilated, throbbing carotids, pulse full and bounding, belladonna is the remedy. Tincture belladonna gtts. v, aqua ℥vi. Mix and give teaspoonful every hour. After the acute symptoms have passed we often see alternate tonic and clonic spasms for which cimicifuga is indicated. For the neuralgia, severe pain in the upper part of the spine, headache—feels like a band drawn tight round the head, worse when lying down, begins at the base of the brain and goes over to the forehead—gelsemium is the remedy. I combine the two remedies as follows for children:
Rx Tr. Gelsemium.
Tr. Cimicifuga a. a. gtts. xx.
Mix. Sig. Teaspoonful every hour.
In one case I saw the spasms were very severe, feet and head almost came together (opisthotonos), small blotches (petechia) on the back, severe pain in the back of the head and between the shoulders, back of the head felt very hot. Here veratrum viride was the remedy. I prescribed tincture veratrum gtts. v, aqua ℥ii and ordered a teaspoonful of this mixture to be given every hour. Do not forget, the more pronounced the tendency to opisthotonos the stronger the indication for veratrum viride. The above remedy conquered the spasms and the child got well. There is a septic condition underlying this disease and echinacea is the remedy to meet that condition. When there is a chilliness over the back, alternate flashes of heat—over the whole body, headache and flushing of the face, profound prostration, give tincture echinacea gtts. x once in two hours. The patient should be bathed all over once a day with Epsom salts and warm water (one ounce of the salts to a pint of water). It neutralizes the toxines, allays the irritation of the sensitive nerves, soothes the patient and thus produces rest.
Opiates and dye house stuff must not be given. They arrest secretion and weaken the vitality of your patient, and lower the power of the system to resist the disease. Remember not only in this disease but in all others, work with Nature, never against her. Morphine never relieved pain; it only stupefies the patient so they do not feel the pain. In its place give tincture passiflora in five drop doses every half hour. It will often quiet the children and give them rest.
In one case where I was called the family physician had treated the child for cerebro spinal meningitis and it had recovered with paralysis of the legs. I treated this case with calcarea phos. third decimal and kali phos. third decimal; giving three tablets of each remedy in alternation every three hours. This treatment was continued until the little patient could walk. Deafness is another sequel frequently met with in this disease. Give sulphur sixth decimal and silicea sixth decimal in alternation (three tablets of each) every three hours. From my own experience I should say that this disease can be cured in the very large proportion of cases. I have been successful in about every case I have seen. Watch your case carefully; give the remedy indicated. Expect the best results but be prepared for the worst.
Locomotor Ataxia. When the lower extremeties appear heavy, can scarcely drag them along, patient staggers when walking, cannot walk except when the eyes are open and in the daytime, great craving for indigestible foods, alumina is the remedy. Prescribe three tablets of the third decimal every three hours. In the first stage of this disease belladonna is the remedy indicated when the conjunctiva is congested, pupils dilated, with ptosis, diplopia and incontinence of urine. Give belladonna first decimal dilution in ten drop doses three times a day. When there is paralysis of the bladder, loss of sexual desire, shooting pains, the ataxic gait—worse when closing the eyes, cannot walk in the dark without reeling, legs feel as if made of wood, argentum nitricum sixth decimal is the remedy. Give in doses of three tablets every three hours. For the general nervous exhaustion phosphide of zinc is the remedy to be given in doses of one-tenth grain three times a day. For the "lightning pains" give tincture cannabis indica gtts. x, aqua ℥jiv. Mix. Sig. Teaspoonful once in two hours. Constipation is an obstinate symptom of this disease, see article on constipation, page 95, for the indicated remedies. For the incontinence of urine equisetum first decimal dilution is the remedy, to be given in five drop doses every three hours. For the severe gastric distress (gastralgia) carbo veg., third decimal should be prescribed. Give your patient three tablets every three hours. There are perforating ulcers on the feet and soles of the feet that are best treated by silicea sixth decimal, giving three tablets three times a day. The sexual excitement, painful erections in the morning, calls for picric acid sixth decimal. Prescribe it in doses of three tablets every two hours. The burning of the soles of the feet may be relieved by the belladonna as given above. Secale cornutum is one of your best anti-tabetic remedies and has made cures of this disease in the first decimal dilution, giving five drops once in three hours. In alternation with this remedy you should also give tincture stramonium first decimal dilution for the head symptoms. Dose. Five drops once in three hours. This is one of the diseases where electricity may be used as a valuable adjunct if the doctor understands how to use it intelligently and judiciously.
Tetanus. In this disease where the lips are drawn back showing the teeth, jaws locked together, our Homeopathic friends have cured some cases with tincture angustura, giving doses of five drops every half hour; also with the first decimal dilution of hypericum giving ten drops once in two hours. It is the remedy in injuries which affect the spine.
The best treatment for lock jaw is first a vapor bath; one can produce free perspiration in a few minutes with two lumps of fresh lime, half the size of a man's fist; wrap each piece in a moist cloth and this again with a dry cloth doubled several times and fastened securely. Place one each side of the patient's body while in bed. This will make the patient perspire copiously and lasting from one to two hours. It takes the place of the bath cabinet and vapor bath. Cauterize the wound freely with caustic potash, then apply a poultice of equal parts of slippery elm, lobelia seed and flaxseed moistened with warm water. Change the poultice every two hours. For internal use there is a remedy that the fathers of the Eclectic school learned to depend upon. The prescription is as follows:
Rx Oil of Capsicum.
Oil of Lobelia, a. a. ℨi.
Alcohol, 95% ℥ii.
Mix. Sig. Rub the jaws and throat with this mixture. Then give one teaspoonful to one tablespoonful by the mouth. Draw the cheek aside and let the medicine trickle between the teeth. If you cannot get the patient to swallow add one ounce of the mixture to a pint of warm water and give as an enema per rectum. Hold a folded napkin against the anus to prevent the return of the water. Repeat the dose by the mouth in half an hour if needed, or per rectum in an hour. In ninety-five cases out of a hundred it will make the patient open his mouth. Then the following may be given at intervals:
Tr. Passiflora, ℨi.
Tr. Gelsemium gtts. xx.
Mix. Sig. Teaspoonful every hour.
Place a plug of tobacco about three inches long in a pan of boiling water until it is soft; then apply it over the pit of the stomach. It will usually relax the jaws so the patient can open his mouth. Cases have also been cured by laying the patient on his stomach on a table, then take a hot flat iron and pass it over the whole length of the spine. The heat applied to the spine is a relaxant and will frequently overcome the rigidity of the jaws. Powerful narcotics, serums and various poisons have been used in this condition and failed. The above treatment is the best that has ever been used, for this disease.
In tetanus in horses passiflora—the infusion of the plant and flowers (fresh)—given in doses of a cupful and a half has cured cases where the horse has been given up to die.
In the above treatment of tetanus in the human body the idea is first to encourage a free discharge from the wound; second, to relax nerve tension with the lobelia, until the patient opens his mouth and vomits freely. Then we may be assured that we have the disease under control.
I have met with cases of idiopathic tetanus, caused by eating indigestible food, in children, where I gave tincture gelsemium gtts. xx, aqua ℥vi. Mix. Sig. Teaspoonful once an hour. It cured them.
Hydrophobia. Several times in my life I have been called to visit patients who had been bitten by dogs supposed to be mad. Many dogs said to have hydrophobia are only afflicted with the distemper. When I am called to a case of this kind, I just cauterize the wound in each place where the teeth cut in the flesh with caustic potash. Then to be sure, and to take no chance of hydrophobia developing I have the patient take a "Lime Sweat" as mentioned under the treatment of tetanus. This opens the pores of the skin and will help to remove the poison of rabies, if by chance there should be any in the system. I also prescribe ten drops of tincture echinacea four times a day as a prevention to hydrophobia.
If I think it is a real case of "mad dog" I have the patient take a "Lime sweat" once a week for a month and continue the echinacea for a month or six weeks. I have watched such cases for several months after they were bitten by the dog but no signs of hydrophobia appeared. I am of the opinion that the echinacea and the "lime sweats," or a vapor bath are the best preventive treatment for hydrophobia that we have. When called to a real case of hydrophobia the first thing is to get the patient in bed and give them the "lime sweat" as mentioned under tetanus. An hour's good copious perspiration will do more to get the poison out of their system than any other one thing. Cauterize and poultice the wound no matter how long it has been healed. Get up a free discharge from it as soon as possible. If the patient can swallow give him the following:
Rx Tr. Scutellaria
Cypripedin a. a. grs. xx.
Lobelin, grs. v.
Sulph. Quinine, grs. xxx.
Mix. Divide into Chart. No. 10. Sig. One powder every two hours until all are taken.
This has proven sufficient in some cases, but if the case is well advanced before you see it you have the old siege gun of the older Eclectics. The Comp. Tr. Lobelia (Third preparation) of the American Dyspensatory. If the patient can swallow give him from one-half to a teaspoonful of this remedy every half hour. In the worst cases the patient is unable to swallow any liquid. Then the best and quickest method is to put an ounce of this preparation in a little water and give an enema per rectum. Repeat in an hour if necessary. If we can relax the patient so as to control the spasms we have mastered the disease. If the patient vomits freely so much the better. If you find the spasms growing less severe or less frequent, stick to your treatment. It is doing good. The older Botanic and Eclectic physicians left a record of cures of hydrophobia with these remedies and "what man has done, man may do." I honestly believe this is the best treatment that we have for this disease. Every doctor in general practice should keep the above remedies on hand and know how to use them.
Multiple Sclerosis. The symptoms of multiple sclerosis are pretty well covered by lathyrus. It should be used in the third decimal trituration, giving three tablets three times a day. If the spinal trouble be traumatic hypericum first decimal trituration is the remedy. Give three tablets every three hours.
Concussion of the Brain. I was called with another physician to see a boy about twelve years of age who had been at work with his father in a sawmill. One of the planks hit the saw, flew round and knocked the boy over. He was picked up unconscious and carried into the house. When I saw him he lay on the bed in a stupor; he vomited once all he had eaten the last meal (one of the symptoms of concussion of the brain). My diagnosis was concussion of the brain. I advised tincture belladonna as the remedy indicated. The prescription was as follows:
Rx Tr. Belladonna, gtts. v.
Mix. Sig. Teaspoonful every hour.
The feet were kept warm and cold applications were made to the head. On making my second visit twenty-four hours later I found the boy rational and quite bright. Later in the case the doctor in attendance remarked to me that "the boy had been in the habit of wetting his bed every night but since we began to treat the case he had never done so," and asked me the cause of it. My reply was that "belladonna was one of our best remedies for incontinence of urine." The boy recovered and I saw him twelve years after a strong healthy man.
Cerebral Congestion. Aconite is the remedy in this condition where there is a dry skin, extreme restlessness, when the congestion arises from cold or from violent emotion. The prescription may read Tr. Aconite gtts. v, Aqua ℥vi. Mix. Sig. Teaspoonful once an hour.
If there is hardness and tension to the pulse, a beating and throbbing of the brain and carotids veratrum viride is the remedy. Give tincture veratrum gtts, x, aqua ℥vi. Mix. Sig. Teaspoonful every hour.
When the eyes are red and bloodshot, head hot, feet cool, face red—almost purple, pressure and fullness in the head, with terrible delirium, belladonna is the remedy. The more pronounced the delirium, the stronger the indication for this remedy. Prescribe Tr. belladonna gtts. v, Aqua ℥vi. Mix. Sig. Teaspoonful every hour.
Meningitis. For the fever, quick pulse, etc., which characterizes this disease at its commencement ferri phos. third decimal is the remedy. Add grs. v in a cup of hot water and give teaspoonful doses every half hour. In the second stage or effusion kali mur., third decimal, is the remedy. Add grs. v to a cup of water and give a teaspoonful every half hour. When there is a tendency to effusion and dropsy, eyes wide open and staring, insensible to light, head rolls from side to side on the pillow or he beats it with his hand, forehead wrinkled, urine scanty, and there is the "cry encephalique," helleborus niger is the remedy. Prescribe Tr. Hellebore gtts. v, Aqua ℥vi. Mix. Sig. Teaspoonful every hour. Kali phos. third decimal is the best tonic after the acute symptoms are under control. Put five grains in a cup of water and give a teaspoonful every hour.
Apoplexy. When the pulse is hard and the carotids beat violently, with restlessness and fever, aconite is the remedy. Give Tr. aconite gtts. v, Aqua ℥iv. Mix. Sig. Teaspoonful every hour. If called during an apoplectic fit, our best remedy is ferri phos. Add grains x of the third decimal to a cup of hot water and give the patient a teaspoonful every half hour. It will usually restore the patient to consciousness in a short time and will also control the hemorrhage. To help absorb the exudate and to prevent another "stroke" I have used kali mur. the third decimal. Add ten grains to a cup of water and give in teaspoonful doses every hour. I have followed this treatment for some time and watched the cases expecting another "stroke" but it did not come. Such patients should be warned against over-eating, clogging the stomach, allowing the bowels to become constipated for these all help to produce another attack. It is often remarked: "Well, she has had one stroke; she will soon have the second and then the third. She will die in one of them." You can do very much for these cases and often prevent any more attacks. Look out for the warning symptoms, prickling of the hands and feet, feel as if they were going to sleep. When you hear a patient complain of these symptoms give kali phos., third decimal, three tablets once in two hours.
I believe when our profession understand the real value of kali mur. as a remedy after the apoplectic seizure that many precious lives may be saved. These victims of apoplexy come mostly from the old people. These are the veterans in the battle of life and it is our duty to do all that we can to make their last stay on earth as comfortable as possible. It seems cruel to me when I see how cool and indifferent some children are toward their parents, and also how indifferent some doctors act when an old person is sick. It is often remarked: "They are old enough to die any way; you can't do much for them." There is a higher law than our poor human laws that govern such cases, and it is this—"Just the way we treat these old people, so will we be treated when we get old." One of the brightest spots in my life is the fervent "God bless you, doctor" I have heard from some old person that I have treated and helped. Above all be good and kind to the old people. Study their diseases and learn how to treat them.
Vertigo. When there is a sensation of swaying to and fro in the brain, made worse by stooping, headache of a bursting character, feels as if the brain would protrude through the forehead, aconite third decimal dilution is the remedy. Add twenty drops to a half glass of water and give a teaspoonful every hour. In Meniere's disease with vertigo, hardness of hearing, tinnitus aurium, unsteady gait, sluggish circulation, ammonium iodatum is the remedy. Give two grains once in three hours.
In my practice in vertigo, with noises in the ears, I have given ergot more than any other remedy. I prescribe Fl. Ext. ergot gtts. x three times a day. It seems to contract the small blood vessels of the head. Vertigo, worse when looking up, or rising from a sitting position, constant dread of falling, calls for kali phos. third decimal. Give three tablets once in three hours. When with vertigo there is a deficient supply of blood to the brain from an enfeebled heart, with palpitation and breathlessness, a slow feeble pulse, digitalis is the remedy needed. Give five drops of the first decimal dilution three times a day.
In old people with chronic cerebral congestion that causes much giddiness with little or no pain in the head, iodine is the remedy. You should prescribe five drops of the sixth decimal dilution in a little water once in three hours.
Delirium Tremens. When the face is pale and sunken, violent outbursts of delirium, but cannot keep it up long on account of weakness, patient is suspicious, thinks you are trying to poison him, twitching of every muscle in the body from the toes to the eyes, hyoscyamus is the remedy. Give Tr. hyocyamus gtts. xx, Aqua ℥iv. Mix. Sig. Teaspoonful once an hour. The patient should be plentifully supplied with beef tea made hot with capsicum. It is a good diet for such patients and often calms them. Cannabis indica is one of our best remedies given as follows:
Rx Fl. Ext. Canabis Ind., ℨiv.
Tr. Tolu, ℥iss.
Mix. Sig. Twenty to thirty drops on sugar every hour until the patient sleeps.
The above has been used by Dr. George Silvers, Rahway, N. J., for over forty years successfully, without any other remedy and without any deaths. In my own practice the beef tea with capsicum is used for a constant drink. Bromidia in teaspoonful doses to make them sleep has generally proved successful in my hands. (See Dipsomania and Softening of the Brain (Can't find that one. -Henriette.)
There are two other remedies especially indicated, kali phos. sixth decimal, and kali mur., sixth decimal. Give them every three hours in alternation, three tablets being the dose.
Mania. It seems to me that physicians should be very careful before they put their names to a certificate to send a person away to an insane asylum, that they are really insane beyond the shadow of a doubt. It is a fact that there have been quite a number of persons railroaded to the insane asylum who were perfectly sane.
From my book of experience I will give you my experience with some cases of mania that I have seen in my practice. One night I was called out into the country about ten miles to a small village to see a man supposed to be insane. When I arrived at the village, some time after midnight, I found it nearly depopulated. I could not find my prospective patient so I followed the crowd to learn the cause of the excitement. It seemed that the crazy man had escaped to the woods. The crowd had located him but were afraid to go near him for he was armed with a razor and a big knife and was evidently out for blood. I tried to get the constable to go out and bring the man in so I could prescribe for him—but he did not seem to enthuse over the idea, so I told him that he and I would go and get the man. We started in a roundabout way so as to quietly come up behind the man. It was so dark that we could not see him but we could hear him talking. When I got close to him, from the rear, I clasped my hands round his arms and held them close to his body, while the constable secured the implements of war. We escorted him up to the house. He was the most docile insane man I ever saw. They put him to bed and I gave him the following prescription:
Rx Bromide potash, ℨii.
Mix. Sig. Teaspoonful once an hour.
It was simply a bad case of hysteria in a man. I heard nothing more from the patient.
Another case I was called to was a farmer. When the messenger came after me he said the man was so crazy they could not do anything with him. When I got near enough to the patient to examine him I noticed a foul breath, tongue broad and flabby, the eyes showed that the glands were not secreting properly, the examination of the bowels revealed an impaction of feces in the colon. The man was being poisoned from his own internal secretions. I gave him a good emetic of pulv. mustard and ipecac—half a teaspoonful of each in a cup of warm water. When he had vomited freely I gave him Fl. Ext. cascara sagrada and glycerine a. a. ℥ii. Mix. Sig. Teaspoonful once in two hours until it operated freely on the bowels. He was also given Tr. hyoscyamus—fifteen drops once in two hours—to quiet the nerves. When I saw him the next day the bowels had moved freely and he was better in every way.
A lady of middle age was taken insane. They had decided to have her taken to the asylum when some one advised their sending for me. After I had examined the pulse, the tongue and the eyes, I felt sure there was a congestion somewhere. The red points (papillae) on the tongue showed an invasion of some disease. Upon placing my hand over the uterus I found much heat in the parts which were very sensitive. Under the circumstances I could not make a vaginal examination but my diagnosis was congestion of the neck of the uterus. When congestion is localised, as in the first stages of boils, abscesses, carbuncles, or in the uterus, brain or other organs we know that belladonna is the remedy indicated. I gave this patient Tt. belladonna third decimal dilution, five drops once in two hours and sepia sixth decimal, three tablets once in three hours. I also used Micajah's uterine wafers every other night. One was placed against the os uteri. They will deplete the blood from the congested os better than curetting. This treatment was followed until the patient recovered entirely. All three of these cases would have been sent to the asylum if it had not been for the treatment they received.
A married woman became pregnant. After she found herself in "the way that women like to be who love their lords" she developed a form of puerperal mania and began to hate her husband intensely. A dark cloud seemed to settle over her and she began to lose interest in everything. One Sunday I drove into town just as church service was out in one of the churches. A crowd around the parsonage attracted my attention. I was called in to see this lady. That morning she had obtained some laudanum and taken a pretty good sized dose of it to get rid of all her troubles. I gave her an emetic of pulv. ipecac and mustard, one teaspoonful of each in a cup of warm water. They had to hold her while I managed to get the mixture into her mouth. She vomited freely but it had been so long since she took the opium that the system was fully under its narcotic influence. All night we took turns keeping her awake. When I felt that I had overcome the effects of the opium I gave her Tr. cimicifuga third decimal dilution, ten drops once in three hours, for that form of mania. She went to the end of her time, was just as rational as any one and gave birth to a healthy child.
In mania there are three prominent remedies indicated, belladonna, hyoscyamus and stramonium. Each remedy has a clear cut indication. In the belladonna cases the eyes are red and blood shot, face red, you can see the carotids throb plainly, there is wild delirium, patient thinks he sees ghosts and hideous faces. He has a fixed savage look, with now and then ebullitions of rage and fury. For such cases give the second decimal dilution of belladonna, twenty drops in half a glass of water—a teaspoonful of this mixture every hour.
In the cases calling for stramonium the patient sees all kinds of queer things and the sight of them frightens him, keeps jerking his head up from the pillow. He is very loquacious, going from one subject to another. Rolling round over the bed in all shapes. We have only to note the intensity of the raving to call to our mind the stramonium. Give Tr. stramonium gtts. x, aqua ℥iv. Mix. Sig. Teaspoonful once in two hours.
Where hyoscyamus is indicated there is a pale sunken face, twitching of all the muscles from the toes to the eyes, kicks off the clothes, indecent exposure of the body, very suspicious, fears they will be poisoned. In such cases give Tr. hyoscyamus first decimal dilution, fifteen drops in a glass half full of water and have the patient take a teaspoonful every hour.
We have one remedy for mania with the following symptoms. Extreme anguish. They sit for hours with head bent down, hands resting on their knees, do not notice anything, vitality at its lowest ebb. In such cases veratrum album third decimal dilution is the remedy. Add gtts. xx to aqua ℥vi. Mix. Sig. Teaspoonful every two hours. It will rouse them and put new life and vigor into them.
Many patients are on the border line of insanity from domestic troubles, financial affairs, excessive mental exertion. The brain is worn out (a world weary brain). Such persons need kali phos. It is found in the gray matter of the brain and a lack of this salt will cause weakness of the nervous system. Many persons could be saved by this remedy from becoming nervous wrecks and inmates of insane asylums. Study its actions, get acquainted with it. In cases like the above give kali phos. third decimal trit., three tablets once in two hours.
Suicidal Mania. When there is suppressed deep grief, long drawn sighs, much sobbing, a disposition to hide that grief from others. "The grief that cannot speak. Whispers the o'er fraught heart and bids it break." Such patients often long for death as the only release from their grief. In such cases ignatia is the remedy. Prescribe ignatia gtts. v, aqua ℥iv. Mix. Sig. Teaspoonful once an hour.
When there is a sensation of a heavy black cloud settling down over your patient and in puerperal mania when she thinks she is going crazy and tries to injure herself, cimicifuga is the remedy indicated. Give Tr. cimicifuga five drops once in three hours.
When the patient fears to be alone, is anxious about her disease, thinks she may become insane; in mania she curses, strikes, has obscene thoughts. This case is the opposite from the one presenting the ignatia symptoms. While that patient had the deep silent grief, this one can hardly avoid weeping. For the latter form lilium tigrinum is the indicated remedy. Add Tr. lillium gtts. xx to aqua ℥iv. Mix. Sig. Teaspoonful once in two hours.
When the mind seems to be constantly dwelling on suicide, longs for death, wishes to be alone, religious, melancholy, is peevish and vehement, the least contradiction arouses the patient's wrath, aurum metallicum is the indicated remedy. Give three tablets once in three hours of the third decimal trituration.
When patients have a dry red tremulous tongue, a shrivelled skin, haggard and anxious look, much emaciated, apt to mutiliate the body, chewing the fingers, pulling out the eyelashes, scratching holes in their face and scalp, very restless, arsenicum album is the remedy. Give three tablets of the third decimal trituration every three hours.
Definite Medication, 1911, was written by Eli G. Jones, M.D.