The Tissue Remedies.
W. E. KINNETT, M. D., PEORIA, ILLINOIS
Phosphate of soda has been used as a remedial agent for many years without any specific indications being determined until recent years.
However, we are speaking of this very common old remedy as one of the twelve tissue remedies and its uses in this field of "supply and demand, excess and deficiency." I will not write on its many uses which have been heralded over the world by enterprising pharmacists as their special, and the best (?) effervescing phosphate of soda, which will cure everything from a toothache to an ingrowing toe nail.
This salt is found in the blood, muscles, nerve and brain cells, and in the intercellular fluids. It decomposes into carbonic acid and water. It is said that it absorbs carbonic acid, taking up two molecules of the acid to one molecule of itself and carries it to the lungs where the acid is set free, and oxygen taken to be carried into the blood stream by the iron in the system.
It is stated that the fluids of the body contain both acids and alkalies and that there is never an excess of acids but a deficiency of alkali; not more acid than there should Le but too little alkali. I presume on the same principle that there is no such thing as cold, it is a low degree of heat. So on the
same principle we say there never was an excess of alkali but a deficiency of acid. It is stated by many practitioners that these acids, like an all-pervading evil, are never deficient, but many times in excess. We as eclectics do not subscribe to this idea, for we believe there often is an excess or deficiency of either, but more often a deficiency of the alkali.
Among the indications for the remedy now under consideration may be mentioned a yellow creamy coating on the back part of the tongue, and on the roof of the mouth, the parts usually moist; acid, sour eructations from stomach; vomiting of sour or dark fluid; localized pain in the stomach; pain in stomach coming on two or three hours after eating; waterbrash, with acidity; vomiting of curdled milk or other foods; swelling of the glands in the neck; goiter; exophthalmic goiter; eczema, with an acid condition of the system with yellow secretions; hives; itching all over the body like insect bites.
I have used this remedy in the above conditions and will cite one clinical case. A. P. C., aged 33, married, who resides in another state consulted me by letter in regard to what I diagnosed as exophthalmic goiter. He suffered for two years from this malady, and during this time went to California and remained about a year, and while there, took a long series of electrical treatments and used the following prescription:
|Ext. digitalis||grs. 4|
|Ext. ergot||grs. 30|
|Strych. sulphate||grs. 1/2|
|Ferrum arsenate||grs. 2|
Mix. Make capsules No. 24. Take one after each meal.
This did him practically no good. When he wrote he was in great distress from excessive heart action and exceedingly difficult breathing, with bulging and painful eyes and with enlargement of the thyroid gland. He had not slept in bed for months. Had to sleep in a rocker in a sitting position. He was very weak, emaciated and nervous. Appetite very poor; sour condition of the stomach; could scarcely move around and could do no work.
I prescribed five grains of natrium phos. 3x before meals and at bedtime. Within a month he wrote that he was much better, was not nearly so nervous, could lie down and sleep well, eat well and was gaining strength and flesh.
Within two months he wrote and asked me if he could discontinue the medicine as he felt quite well. I urged him to take it for some months, which he did. About a year after commencing treatment he wrote me that he considered himself well and could pursue his usual avocation with comfort, but that his eyes were quite prominent but gave him no distress.
I have used this remedy quite extensively in rheumatism, and it is the first remedy I think of. Whatever else I prescribe that I may find specifically indicated I give this one from first to last, and especially in the cases that have profuse or sour smelling perspiration. Many physicians claim that the cause of excessive pain in the joints is due to an acid diathesis, and if this is so, it will account for the remedial effect of this drug in these cases. It is stated by good authority that a lack of this salt is one of the causes if not the prime cause of diabetes mellitus. And, yet, while this is so the chief remedy in this disease is natrium sulphuricum, as it regulates the supply of water in the blood and gives off oxygen so necessary to the decomposition of sugar, thus preventing it reaching the kidneys as sugar. Natrium phos. thins the bile that has become inspissated. It is among our best remedies in liver disease.
Sulphate of soda-Glauber's salt, has been used in medicine in its crude form for ages. Those of us who were fortunate enough to have had the privilege of listening to the late Prof. A. J. Howe, well remember how he used to refer to Glauber's salts, and recommend its use in its crude form as a cathartic. However, we are not studying it in its action as a cathartic, but as one of the Tissue Remedies.
This salt is found mostly in the intercellular tissues and not in the cells. In nature it is found abundantly in sea water, saline springs and in some lakes.
When studying natrium muriaticum I spoke of its use especially in the South in malarial diseases, but this salt is not curative in this disease in but few if any cases of malaria, and it was soon abandoned for the reason that it does not eliminate the excess of water in the blood, but equalizes it as. shown in its prompt action in cases of sunstroke and delirium tremens.
While these two salts, natrium muriaticum and natrium Sulphuricum, both act with water, they act in almost opposite directions. Both have the property of attracting water, but for an entirely different purpose. Natrium muriaticum attracts the water that is to be used in the system and distributes it, equally to the different parts of the system, while natrium Sulphuricum attracts the water due to retrograde metamorphosis, and eliminates it from the system. It takes away the water from the worn out leucocytes and thereby accomplishes their disintegration.
This explains why this is one of our very best remedies in ague and other malarial diseases. While it will not act so rapidly eliminating the water from the system as jaborandi and other powerful diaphoretics and thus prevent a chill, it is a much better curative agent.
Among the indications for this drug may be mentioned dirty greenish-gray or greenish-brown coating at base of tongue; bitter taste; cutting pains in region of liver with enlargement of liver; diarrhea with dark greenish bilious stools; diabetes; lithic deposits in the urine that look like brick-dust and cling to side of vessel; excessive secretion of urine; sandy deposits in urine; asthma, worse in damp or wet weather; skin affections with vesicular eruptions containing yellowish serum, and moist yellow scales on the skin; expectorations yellowish or greenish; the condition of the tongue is the key note.
In intermittent fever and malaria it is one of our very best remedies, and it is also a most excellent remedy in diabetes mellitus or insipidus. I have had better success with this than with any other, or all others I have used for these persistent conditions. Possibly reports of some cases will be of interest to those who have never used this remedy in these diseases.
I have on hand now the case of a baby, who was brought to me when he was about one year old. The case had been treated by a reputable physician with negative results. The child was the most emaciated child I have ever seen. Its skin was dry and harsh, tongue coated slightly yellow, temperature slightly elevated, great thirst, very nervous, inclined to spasms, poor appetite, vomiting occasionally some of its food but not all of it. The urine tested gave a specific gravity of 1045 and was most heavily loaded with sugar. I did not make a quantitative test, as it was so difficult to get enough urine from so small a baby to make all tests.
I put the patient on natrium sulphuricum as the chief remedy, to be given regularly five grains of the 3x trituration every four hours. It was very nervous and exceedingly pale and weak and I added kali phos. 3x and ferrum phos. 3x five grains of each every four hours. Within a month the sugar was reduced one-half and the specific gravity to 1030. In another month the sugar was only one-fourth what it was at first and the specific gravity was 1020 In four months there was not a trace of sugar, and the urine showing a specific gravity of 1015. The quantity of urine was then about normal. I have not examined the urine for two months or more. The child is rapidly improving in every way.
Another case, a child four months old, was affected with eczema of the head and face. The patient was very restless, skin dry and harsh, tongue yellowish coated, vomiting food and often a greenish liquid, and passing large quantities of urine. I requested the mother to secure me a good sample of the urine for examination. The next day she brought four ounces which she stated was passed at one time into. the bottle. She stated that it was almost. impossible to keep a dry napkin on the baby for any length of time. The urine was almost as clear as clear water with a specific gravity of 1002, no albumen or sugar.
I commenced treating this case with two grain doses of natrium sulph. 3x every four hours and kali phos- 3x two grains every four hours in alternation. In two weeks the urine showed 1010 specific gravity and was of a better color. The eczema disappeared and the patient retained food better. In two weeks more,. at this writing, the specific gravity of the urine is 1012, and he does not pass half as much urine as when treatment was commenced. I am anticipating a full recovery from both the eczema and the diabetes insipidus.
Some three years ago a prominent eclectic wrote me about two cases of diabetes mellitus and they were husband and wife and the cases were as near identical as it is possible for two cases to be. He asked me if I knew of any of the tissue remedies that would benefit these cases, stating that he had, treated. them for a, long time and both be and the patients were discouraged, and if he did not get something to relieve them they would drift to some other physician, I suggested natrium sulph. and kali phos. In a week afterwards I received word from him to the effect that if he only Anew that these remedies, would be of benefit he would gladly give them a trial, But that day both patients were in his office and he was going to give them the medicines. I heard nothing from him for over a mouth, when he informed me that two weeks after commencing treatment he made an examination of their urine and that there was less than half as much sugar as at time of commencing treatment and the specific gravity had almost returned to normal. In two weeks more, four weeks in all, there was not a trace of sugar, specific gravity normal and a normal amount of urine passed, and the patients said they felt as well as ever-cured.
Silica, or common quartz, is found in hair, nails, skin, periosteum, neurolemma, bone and connective tissue.
This is the remedy for all ailments attended with the formation of pus, since it promotes suppuration, it hastens or "ripens" all abscesses. All inflammations that do not heal by resolution are hastened to suppuration by this drug and it should be continued till all the infiltration disappears. Calcarea sulph. by restraining the suppurative process heals suppurating wounds and is a companion remedy to silica.
The writer has prescribed silica in cases of carbuncles, boils, and abscesses in their formative stage and the morbid processes disappeared. Also in cases of small hard lumps just under the skin and pustules anywhere on the body, but usually on the face and neck. Use it in profuse, offensive persistent sweating of the feet, also when there is greenish, yellow, profuse, pus like expectorations.
This is a wonderful remedy for injuries in and about joints, where there seems to be but little if any inflammatory conditions, but where there is occasional or persistent pains especially when the parts are moved. Sometimes we meet with cases of injured knees, elbows or wrists, and other joints from jumping, falling or being thrown upon them that leaves a sore and painful condition that is ofttimes very persistent.
Here we have a very potent remedy in silica, and you will be surprised how rapidly it will relieve, when other remedies have failed after long and repeated trials. It seems to act favorably on tendons, cartilage and bone in this condition. Very persistent cases have been relieved completely in four or five days. In chronic inflammations of the large or small joints we have in silica the most positive remedy that ,has yet been discovered. It is also a wonderful helper in gouty conditions. In many cases of gout its action is slow, but persistent use will bring the reward.
In closing this discussion of the tissue remedies, as I stated in the beginning, I have not attempted to give all their indications, and in fact only a few, but what few I have written may stimulate to a careful study of them that we may be the better equipped to relieve suffering.
I find by a large correspondence since the first article was published that many practitioners have used them some, and failing to get results as they had hoped, have abandoned them, just as they have many other good remedies without sufficiently proving them. In almost every case there has not been that study that eclectics are accustomed to give to drugs. Keep positive clinical records of cases, and observe the indications for which they are prescribed and the results, and by all means lay aside prejudice and honestly search for the truth.
Ellingwood's Therapeutist, Vol. 2, 1908, was edited by Finley Ellingwood M.D.