The Bromides Specifically Applied.
The following suggestions concerning the use of the bromides will be found of value. When a bromide should be given for any indicated cause. Too much carelessness is exercised in selecting that compounds with an alkaline earths which is indicated in that particular case. The potassium bromide is an active muscular sedative, as well as a nerve sedative. It suspends the action of the muscular structures by a direct action on the contractile power of the muscle. It acts on the stomach by inducing loss of muscular power and of tone. It suspends peristaltic action of the intestinal muscles, and thus produces debility of the bowels as well. It creates pain in these organs from irritation. In an occasional case in small doses it promotes an appetite, but in large doses it diminishes the appetite.
Sodium bromide has but little influence upon the stomach or intestinal tract. When needed for nervous irritation where these organs are weak this agent is preferable. It should be selected usually for infants, and for those aged and feeble.
Ammonium bromide should not be prolonged for any great period. It should be given when a sedative to the nervous system is needed in conjunction with a powerful general stimulant at a time of weakness or general prostration, and when an alkaline remedy is not contraindicated.
Strontium bromide is a comparatively new remedy which seems to exercise both a soothing and tonic influence upon the stomach and intestinal tract. Its sedative influence on the central nervous system is fully equal to that of any of the other bromides. -It is very kindly received, and exercises but few undesirable influences even in large doses. It is especially useful, I find, in chronic stomach disorder in conjunction with other indicated remedies.
The bromide of lithium is indicated when, in conjunction with a nerve sedative, a sedative to the kidneys is desired, which will increase their action, or when nerve irritation is due to lithemia.