Suggestions from the Past.
The following are some suggestions that were made and were carried into effect quite commonly by very successful members of our school thirty or more years ago; notwithstanding we believe we have advanced in many particulars there are some of these suggestions that have never been improved on. Others of them will serve at times an excellent purpose when other better known measures will have failed.
White Liquid Physic.—This was very popular at one time with the older physicians in correcting chronic disorders of the intestinal tract, especially in chronic diarrhea: I used it in my earlier practice but it was so objectionable to the taste that I substituted other remedies for it. It is made of the sulphate of soda, eight ounces, water one pint, when dissolved and half of an ounce each of nitric and hydrochloric acids. The dose of this was one or two teaspoonfuls given in a half of a glass of water.
Nursing Sore Mouth.—The following combination I use today not only in a nursing sore mouth but in very intractable cases of stomatitis at some time during their course without regard to the specific symptoms. At the same time it is very beneficial in sore throats. It may be taken internally and be used as a gargle. I should not hesitate to use it even in gangrenous stomatitis but would probably add echinacea to it in that case. The old formula is made of white oak bark, yellow dock root, and tag alder, of each one ounce. This should be added to boiling water, enough to make a pint after having boiled for half an hour. It should be strained and a little boric acid added to prevent decomposition. One or two teaspoonfuls every two or three hours is the dose.
Hoarseness.—Take ten drops of dilute nitric acid three or four times a day in sweetened water. This is excellent for singers or public speakers. For immediate benefit drop three or four drops of the dilute acid on a small square of loaf sugar, allow it to dissolve on the tongue slowly, drawing the air into the lungs over it,
For severe hoarseness which results from cold use specific belladonna ten mimins, fluid extract of collinsonia, one dram, tincture of aconite twenty minims, water two ounces. A teaspoonful every hour or two.
Painful Urination.—Take five drops of specific hydrangia every hour in a little water.
For Tape Worm.—Creosote, thirty drops; mucilage of acacia, four ounces, mix and make an emulsion. Of this take a teaspoonful three times a day for three days, then for three days increase the dose to two tea-spoonfuls. Then for three days more increase to three teaspoonfuls. It may be taken in a little water, no active physic is necessary but the bowels should be kept in a normal condition. In some cases this course will produce surprising results.
Falling of the Hair.—Rub into the scalp thoroughly twice each day, a sufficient quantity of the following mixture: Tannic acid, one-half of a dram; tincture of cantharides, one dram; oil of capsicum, five drops; glycerin, two ounces.
A Depilatory.—If the following is applied once or twice each day, according to the sensitiveness of the skin, to a small surface from which it is desired to remove the hair, at the expiration of ten or twelve days the skin will become reddened and each hair can be easily withdrawn without pain. The formula is as follows: Carbonate of soda, one dram; quick lime, one-half a dram; pulverized charcoal, ten grains; glycerin, one dram; simple ointment, eight drams. Mix.
Pigmentation of Pregnant Women. —It is seldom that treatment is advised for this condition, although it is a most objectionable one to many. The following was used at one time successfully: Cocoa butter, two and one-half drams; castor oil, two and one-half drams; oxide of zinc, three and one-half grains; white precipitate, one and two-thirds grains; essence of roses, ten minims. Mix.
A few years ago a number of writers were quite enthusiastic concerning the action of belladonna in stimulating normal ovulation and thus overcoming sterility. In a number of cases where one-eighth of a grain of the extract was given before meals or four or five times a day, cases which had previously been sterile, found that the condition was entirely removed. The remedy is well worth our observation. There is no doubt that this condition can be treated in at least a few cases with medicine with good results. It is worth a trial.
Ellingwood's Therapeutist, Vol. 2, 1908, was edited by Finley Ellingwood M.D.