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misfortunes, runs about the room howling and screaming, or he max sit brooding in a corner, wailing and weeping in an inconsolable manner. Melancholia; a despairing melancholia after religious excitement.
Twenty-three years ago I had a patient in charge who had mental alienation, due to religious excitement. She was very violent for two years, during which time she was in an institution in Indiana. At the end of this time the superintendent pronounced her incurable. Her relatives then had her transferred to an institution in this State, and at the expiration of one year there was very little change for the better. In fact, she was worse, as she had become very pale, weak, and melancholy, sitting and looking at the floor the entire day without saying scarcely a word unless spoken to, when she would say that. she was forever lost, as she had committed the unpardonable sin. Her bowels were badly constipated, only moving when given a cathartic or an enema. Her entire symptoms pointed to Veratrum, and by giving a few doses at long intervals, she was entirely cured in the short space of six months. She is now living in Georgia. I heard from her a short time ago and she was perfectly well.
Just recently it was my happy lot to relieve a young lady who was suffering from melancholia-weak, depressed, stupid, dull, would scarcely speak when spoken to, bowels badly constipated. Was very nervous and choreic. Two doses of Veratrum cured the case.
Under Veratrum you will find many head symptoms and your must study them carefully. I will mention but one condition and that is pressing on the vertex in the morning after waking; pain like a flattening pressure on vertex, which, on movement, becomes throbbing. Excessive dryness of the eyelids. Veratrum is one of the remedies for paralysis of the upper eyelids; ptosis.
If you can imagine the conditions found in shock or collapse, you will get a fair portrait of Veratrum. Icy coldness of the entire body, pinched features, wrinkled skin like a washerwoman's hands, or the skin remains in folds after being pinched; weak heart action; thready, irregular pulse; terrible colic and cramps in the limbs; profuse, watery vomiting; rice water discharges from the bowels with cold sweat on the forehead. Collapse-with vomiting of water or mucus, and profuse diarrhæa, cold sweat on the forehead and great weakness; the appetite is not diminished; it does not seem to be disturbed, but there is an appetitie for fruits and cold things. With all this terrible forcible vomiting there is a great craving for cold drinks. A Veratrum patient is cold and wants cold food and cold drinks. Is it any wonder that Hahnemann recommended Veratrum for cholera ?
When you get into practice you will soon see cases of cholera morbus (or possibly cholera), the diarrhæa possibly brought on by drinking cold water, eating fruit, etc., coming on generally in the night, having fearful colic, feeble pulse, an awful weakness and empty sensation in the abdomen, and with it frequently, violent vomiting and gushing, watery diarrhæa, with coldness over the entire body and cold sweat on the forehead. Veratrum is the curative remedy.
Again there is another condition of the bowels which you will find more frequently in children and insane persons; a chronic constipation, the stools dark, hard and large, and evacuated with difficulty. There come on griping pains, sometimes below and at other times above the umbilicus; before the attempt to evacuate the bowels the child cries and becomes very faint with cold sweat on the forehead. Here we see the cold faint again.
The sexual organs are irritated and the menses are early and profuse or there may be sexual mania preceding the menses. Dysmenorrhæa, when there is general coldness, abdominal weakness, abdominal cramps, vomiting, with cold sweat on the forehead. When the menses are suppressed and a state of collapse sets in, vomiting, profuse diarrhæa, coldness, cold sweat on the forehead, Veratrum will be the healing balm.
In the respiratory organs we read: “Constriction of the larynx; spasmodic, suffocating cough with protruding eyes, long shocks of coughing with cutting in the abdomen. Suffocative cough, or cough with much expectoration; coldness, blueness of face, with involuntary urination.”
Veratrum will be found useful in bronchitis, especially in those persons advanced in life. There is rattling of mucus but the patient is unable to expectorate, prostration is marked, vitality low, coldness, cold sweat on forehead. (Here we can compare Tartar Emetic.)
From what I have said you will note the coldness, the lowered vitality, weakness, watery discharges, cramps; with cold sweat on the forehead.
It is well to study remedies in classes or groups so that they can be readily designated one from the other, when we come to use them.' We study cold remedies, hot remedies, burning remedies, and so on.
Now I will make a few comparisons in cold remedies, as I have told you that Veratrum is a cold remedy.
Camphor.- Camphor has an acute, excitable stage, and later this great irritability is lost and a state of coldness and unconsciousness follows. Now we will see patients with great anxiety and extreme fear,— fear everything, afraid of the dark, dread to be alone. The
mental symptoms of Camphor demand a very close study. The patient may want to jump out of bed or out of the window. Child creeps into a corner and howls and cries. These symptoms come from violent inflammations. This confused state is the result of shock and comes on with a vengeance, and the fiercer it comes the sooner the stage of coldness follows. And when the coldness comes on the patient insists on being uncovered even if he is in a cool place.
I spoke of Veratrum in cholera. Now Camphor will come in and do its work nobly. The Camphor patient comes down quickly, the face is cold, pinched, blue, with very little sweat. The discharges from the bowels are not profuse nor is there much vomiting, but he quickly takes on the appearance of collapse. Cold, blue, blue lips, blue finger nails, paralyzed state, and death ends the scene if not relieved with Camphor. In Camphor the thirst is not great or it may be so great that he is continually wanting cold water.
In Camphor there is great prostration, blueness, coldness, but not much sweat; notwithstanding the great coldness, he wants to be uncovered, -remember the body is cold and dry. I hope you will always remember that during the heat and pains the patient wants to be covered, but when he gets cold, cold relieves and he wants to be uncovered and wants more cold.
Cuprum.-Cuprum has a cold spot in its workings. Cuprum produces prostration and this prostration is brought about by some great nervous excitement, a nerve tension, accompanied by evacuation, always associated with the most violent cramps. Convulsive cramps all over the body. Whenever I think of Cuprum those horrible cramps, twitching, jerking, trembling, and blueness of the skin present themselves before my mind. All the actions of Cuprum are convulsive in nature. Spasmodic. Cuprum does not have the degrees of coldness that Veratrum and Camphor have, but more cramping, more convulsive tendencies, and not nearly the amount of prostration.
The more copious the discharge from the bowels, and the more forcible and profuse the vomiting and sweat, especially the cold sweat on the forehead, the more we think of Veratrum. Excessive cramping stands for a Cuprum case. Cold and dry, Camphor.
Ars. Alb.- A great disturber of the human economy, it has the faculty of disturbing all the functions and tissues of the body; it has an action peculiar to itself; it has certain striking features. Six words express much belonging to Ars. : anxiety, restlessness, burning, cadaveric odors, prostration and coldness. The surface of the body is pale, cold, clammy, sweating, and the aspect is cadaveric. There is great anxiety and restlessness; anguish; constantly changing position ; great thirst-wants to drink little and often, although at times we find a desire for large quantities of water. Often there is vomiting immediately after eating or drinking. The discharges are dark or black, watery or fluid with a horrible odor. Here we note also a burning in stomach, bowels, and rectum. The skin at first may be hot and dry; later it is icy cold, covered with clammy sweat, the patient complaining of intense burning heat within, but cold without and wants to be covered, being opposite to that of Veratrum.
Carbo Veg.-In many ways we might call this remedy the sluggard; sluggishness is the state we find running through all its symptomology. Here is another remedy some features of which resemble Ars. A burning runs through this remedy, burning in the veins, burning in the capillaries, burning in the head, burning of the skin, burning in every inflamed part. An internal burning and an external coldness is also noted. Coldness, feeble heart action, feeble circulation. Icy coldness. The extremities are cold, this may be a dry cold, or cold and moist. Feet and knees cold as ice. Face cold; nose cold; ears cold; cold tongue; cold breath; coldness with fainting spells; covered all over with cold sweat in collapse. Collapse with cold face, cold tongue, cold breath. Patient has a death-like look. In all this condition of coldness he wants to be continually fanned. The patient, with all the features of collapse and death expressed in his face, still wants to be fanned. His face tells of profound sickness, lips are drawn, blue, livid, sickly, deathly. Carbo. Veg. will come in the stage of collapse in cholera, generally a finishing remedy, the stools are not so profuse but bloody, slimy, putrid, cadaverous smelling, certainly all other conditions agreeing.
Secale. -Secale is another cold remedy, with profuse, gushing stools, and when in the cold stage the patient wants to be uncovered all the time and to be in a cold room. The cold stage goes right on and does not alternate conditions like in Camphor, which has hot and cold spells, when if the patient is hot he desires to be covered, when cold he wants covers removed.
Tabacum is still another cold remedy. Under Veratrum we noticed great dizziness, dizziness lasting several days. We also have vertigo in Carbo. Veg. cases. Under tobacco we find much vertigo with heaviness of the head; much sickness of the stomach, deathly pallor, exhaustion; the patient enjoys the sensation, he doesn't care whether school keeps or not, there is so much prostration. He is wilted and falls down in a heap; he is relieved by being in the open air and by vomiting. The face appears hippocratic, is drawn, nose pinched, eyes sunken, the surface covered with a cold, clamy sweat, the extremities very cold. And with all this combination of nausea, vertigo, chilliness, cold clammy sweat, he wants his abdomen uncovered.
In cholera or cholera morbus we can distinguish tobacco from all the previously named remedies by its own ear marks. With a face of collapse, body cold, abdomen hot,-the patient tears the clothes off his abdomen, and remains quiet when his abdomen is exposed to the air-stools yellow or greenish slime, extremities cold, skin livid, hands and feet like ice, with cold clammy sweat, vomits every time he moves, worse at nights. Tabacum may follow well after Camphor, Secale, Hydrocyanic acid, or Veratrum, when they do not seem to clear up the case entirely.
I am sure you will never forget Tabacum, its dreadful sickness, nausea and vomiting from the slightest motion, dreadful weakness and coldness, which is only relieved by lying quietly on the back with the abdomen uncovered and breathing cold air.
I know I have wandered away from Veratrum, but by comparison of a remedy with its allies we are able to know it better.
I hope you will study all the symptoms of Veratrum as given by its first prover, the immortal Hahnemann. If every one present will diligently study the materia medica and apply it according to the method laid down by Hahnemann, give the single remedy and the minimum dose, his experience will be worth recording. If not, his labor will be expended on barren fields and will be buried in the cemetery of the past. “ 'Tis hard to toil—when toil is almost vain,
In barren ways;
In harvest days.
The autumn yield;
O’er fruitless field.” There are two flags you should run up on your ship, first the flag of Similia and under that the stars and stripes, for they represent life and liberty. The top flag for suffering humanity all over the world, the stars and stripes for the land of the free-the greatest country that God's sun ever shone upon.
I thank you for your attention.
Mountain air and sea breezes are nature's specifics for hay fever.