Page images
PDF
EPUB

brain, lasting several minutes; this recurred on intellectual exertion shortly afterwards. Was occupied too much during the day to notice symptoms, but during afternoon and evening attention was constantly being drawn to the fact of dimness of vision, especially for distant objects; could scarcely recognise the faces of friends across the street. During the night had to rise twice to urinate, urine copious and light coloured.

20th.—7.40 a.m.—Took five drops; shortly afterwards return of the grasping headache at under surface of left frontal lobe, and during the forenoon sneezing and nasal catarrh, with dimness of sight during reading, and as if the letters had a reflection beneath, making them appear double, one line half underneath the other. Afterwards too much occupied to observe symptoms, and proving interrupted.

E. J. H., a married lady, set. 40. Nervo-lymphatic, black hair and eyes; has had bronchitis and quinsey, now in good health.

September 20th, 1872.—Took three drops of third cent, dilution every two hours for twenty-four hours, not knowing -what she was taking. Shortly after beginning, and for the whole day, she complained of much palpitation and trembling of the heart, and feeling as if heart tumbled about, with heat and itching of palms and flushing of heat throughout whole body. During the night had a sudden attack of sore throat, as if swelling of uvula and velum, with dryness of whole mouth, and next morning the trembling of the heart was worse, and she objected to take any more of the drug. The weak, trembling condition of heart continued for some days.

M. J., a married lady, set. 50. Nervous temperament, light hair, grey eyes; delicate, but in usual health.

March 28th, 1874.—Took three drops of third cent. dil. four times a day, and continued same dose for two weeks, under a pretext as a medicine though not complaining. During the time she frequently complained of a feeling of exhaustion at the heart, and sensation as if jumping out or tumbling over with a general weak feeling. She afterwards felt better than usual in her general health.

Dr. Stokes.—S. E. S., a lady of bilious sanguine temperament, unmarried, aet. 35, subject to indigestion.

January 22nd, 1852.—Took a drop of the third dilution morning, midday, and evening. Fulness and pressure in the stomach were relieved by the medicine. Appetite bad all day.

23rd.—No medicine; appetite bad.

24th.—Weight on stomach and chest, breakfast lies heavy all day; standing up fatigues her much; tremulous weakness all over, as if some evil were apprehended; flatulence aud eructation. To-day took a dose of four drops, third dilution.

25th.—Stomach sore and tender on rising this morning, tongue red and sore, gums white, throat dry, with thirst.

26th.—The above symptoms continue, but in a milder degree; they gradually ceased after the medicine was left off, and she got quite well.

31st.—Took a pilule soaked in the fourth dilution in the evening. In the night she was wakened by a violent burning pain in the hypogaster, going through to the sacrum; burning pain in epigastrium for half an hour, when it ceased after a stool.

February 1st.—Stomach sore and tender, worse after food; urine scanty and red. After this felt very well for four days.

5th.—The soreness returned in the epigastrium, extending upwards under sternum. Pains in stomach after breakfast and dinner.

8th.—Headache and cold feet; the headache is in the vertex, pressive, comes on in the afternoon and lasts till night, for three days. On the fourth day it changed to forenoon, with heat and flushing of face. An attack of diarrhoea now came on, after which the bowels were costive and evacuations hard during a week. Anxious dreams, is drowsy and heavy in the evening, turns about very much in bed, is easily tired by slight exertion; the arms feel benumbed in the morning; the legs go to sleep and tingle when sitting; lips and throat dry, without thirst.

25th.—Catamenia a week too soon, free, preceded by weight in the head and ears, accompanied by pains in the abdomen and back and cold feet. The period lasts some hours longer than is usual, and goes off on the 27th with an intense frontal headache, which lasts from ten to one o'clock in the night. She had this night a cramp in the calf of one leg. In the evening a sudden attack of sore throat and bronchial catarrh, which went away on the morning of the 28th and returned at night. During several days there was soreness of chest and cough in the evening.

Remarks.—The throat dryness, the catarrhal symptoms, the pain in the bowels, the premature and free catamenia in a person who had them scanty and with a tendency to retardation, seemed to me to depend clearly on the action of the medicine. These were symptoms very unusual with the prover, who appears to have been very susceptible to the action of Crotalus.Monthly Homoeopathic Review, vol. iii, p. 160, 1859.

J. V. Martin.—In Mure's Materia Medica. First proving.—Took one dose [it was Mure's rule to exhibit only one dose, v., p. 66, 1. 25] of first or second trituration [v., p. 23,1. 11—16] of venom of Crotalus horridus. There followed, during the first day, heavy pain in back of orbit and at left eyebrow. Second day: pain under right orbit and right side of forehead. Third day: dry cough, with tickling in throat at night.—Mure's Materia Medica, p. 10. Many other symptoms are recorded, but are, by the present writer, considered not reliable.

Second proving.—Took a dose of first or second trituration at 10 p.m. There followed on first day pricking all over body, starting during sleep, sleeplessness.—Mure's Materia Medica, p. 11.

Dr. Oates, having frequently witnessed the good effect of the use of alcohol after bites of venomous animals, and particularly after those of rattlesnakes, and perceiving that not only was the action of the poison arrested, but that under these circumstances the system was scarcely susceptible of being intoxicated with alcohol in any form, he was desirous of reversing the experiment by watching the effects of the poison when introduced into the system of a person already thoroughly intoxicated. This experiment he performed through the stomach instead of through the circulation direct. For this purpose he carefully extracted a small quantity of venom from a healthy rattlesnake, and compounded it into pills with bread-crumb. He then intoxicates himself considerably with brandy; after this he swallowed one of the pills, and its effect was to soon diminish the pulse, and although the intoxication was pretty deep, three of the pills so reduced the pulse and depressed the whole system that, for danger of collapse, powerful stimulants had to be resorted to. This, and other subsequent trials, fully satisfied him of the profound sedative action of rattlesnake venom, which he thought was scarcely equalled in this respect by any other substance.—Given by Dr. Burnett in Proc. Bost. Soc. of Nat. Hist., vol. iv, p. 323,1854-6.

Dr. Wallace writes :—" In view of the fact that carbonic acid gas, so deleterious in the lungs, is innocent, nay salutary in the stomach, I made myself and others subjects of experiments with the poison of the rattlesnake {Crotalus horridus), and I extended the experiments further on myself than on the others. This animal substance is the true Sampson of the materia medica, and I anticipate the time when rattlesnakes will be reared for medicinal purposes as the poppy and the palma christi are now. I mixed," he continues, "with some cheese by friction in a glass mortar with a pestle, the bags, venom and all, taken from the fangs of a large and vigorous rattlesnake, and then divided the mass into one hundred pills. Of these I occasionally took, sometimes one, at other times two, or three, or four pills a day. A general dropsy succeeded the first state of heavenly sensations, which has not, even to this day, fully gone off, being even now, March, 1827, subject to swellings in the evenings."—James Westwood Wallace, Tanguier, Virginia, 1824. Coxe's Dispensatory, 1827, p. 664.

On this Dr. S. Weir Mitchell writes to the editor of the Philadelphia Medical Times (vol. i, p. 101):—"Dr. Wallace's ' Provings' of Crotalus venom seem to me worthy of preservation."

Dr. Wallace goes on to write :—" The diseases of the lymphatic and arterial systems are never benefited by rattlesnake poison, but the nervous and muscular systems are speedily roused into action. Palsy is much benefited; old rheumatisms are removed or relieved; the passions of the mind are wonderfully excited; delirium in typhus fever, continued muttering (typhomania), is almost immediately removed, and a serene mind, expressive of pleasure, follows; melancholy is quickly changed into gay anticipations. Old sores are uniformly injured, on one occasion an old cicatrix opened and was difficult to heal afterwards. The intellectual powers become improved."

Dr. Hayward.—Kitten. Four drops of pure venom, which had been preserved in glycerine, were dissolved in a drachm of distilled water and poured down the throat of a kitten about 10 a.m., September, 1878. The kitten shortly began to tremble, and did so quite visibly for five minutes, and at the sixth minute it mewed quite distressingly and appeared very uncomfortable. After eight minutes it crouched down and partially closed its eyes, and after twelve minutes it lay down, it lay quiet, and was loath to be roused up. After twenty minutes it mewed a good deal and seemed very distressed, and on the room door being opened it ran away as if frightened. The distress and restlessness continued, and at the thirtieth minute, on being taken back into the room, it lay down as if dull, heavy, stupid, and sleepy, and on being petted it appeared snappish; it remained much the same for the day, and in the evening it vomited, which it had never done before. The next day it appeared somewhat dull, quiet, and snappish, but nothing otherwise wrong.

An Infant.—Dr. Barstow writes to Dr. J. R. Coxe (of Coxe's Dispensatory):

"Wilkesbarre, Pa., May 27th, 1806. "... Some time in the summer of 1801, the wife of Mr. Alfred Beeman, of Braintrim, Luzerne County, Pa., was bitten by a rattlesnake. She was then in the fourth or fifth month of pregnancy. After a considerable degree of the common consequences of such an accident had

VOL. XLI, NO. CLXIII. JANUARY, 1883. C

« PreviousContinue »