3. To avoid the injurious effects of impure air, the following rules, should be carefully observed. The admission of air which contains anything that emits an unpleasant odor into closed rooms should be avoided. The temperature of every apartment should be kept as near 70 deg. Fahr. as possible, and the air should not be overcharged with watery vapor. Provisions should be made for the free admission into and escape of air from the room at all times. When an apartment is not in use, it should be thoroughly ventilated by opening the windows. Those who are compelled to remain in an atmosphere tilled with dust, should wear a cotton-wool respirator.
4. To insure a healthy condition of the body, the diet of man ought to be varied, and all excesses should be avoided. The total amount of solid food taken in the twenty-four hours should not exceed two and a half pounds, and not more than one-third of this quantity should consist of animal food. Many persons do not require more than one pound and a half of mixed food. To avoid parasitic diseases, meat should not be eaten rare, especially pork. The amount of drink taken should not be more than three pints in twenty-four hours. The excessive use of tea and coffee should be avoided. Pickles, boiled cabbage, and other indigestible articles should never be eaten.
5. To avoid the evil effects of alcoholic liquors, perfect abstinence is the only safe course to pursue. Although one may use spirituous liquors in moderation for a long period of time and possibly remain healthy, yet such an indulgence is unnecessary and exceedingly dangerous. A person who abstains entirely from their use is safe from their pernicious influence; a person who indulges ever so moderately is in danger; a person who relies on such stimulants for support in the hour of need is lost.
6. While the use of tobacco is less pernicious than alcohol in its effects, et it exerts a profound disturbing influence upon the nervous system, and gives rise to various functional and organic diseases. This is the verdict of those who have given the subject the most study, and who have had the best opportunities for extensive observation. Suddenly fatal results have followed excesses in the use of tobacco. Therefore, the habit should be avoided, or if already acquired, it should be immediately abandoned.
7. The clothing should be light and porous, adapted in warmth to the season. It is especially important that persons in advanced life should be well protected against vicissitudes of heat and cold. Exposure is the cause of almost all those inflammatory diseases which occur during winter, and take off the feeble and the aged. The under-garments should be kept scrupulously clean by frequent changes. Corsets or bands which impede the flow of blood, compress the organs of the chest or abdomen, or restrict the movements of the body, are very injurious, and should not be worn. Articles of dress which are colored with irritating dye-stuffs, should be carefully avoided.
8. It matters not how varied a person's vocation may be, change, recreation, and rest are required. It is an error to suppose that more work can be done by omitting these. No single occupation which requires special mental or physical work, should be followed for more than eight hours out of the twenty-four. The physical organism is not constructed to run its full cycle of years and labor under a heavier burden than this. Physical and mental exercise is conducive to health and longevity, if not carried too far. It is erroneous to suppose that excessive physical exertion promotes health. Man was never intended to be a running or a jumping machine. In mental work, variety should be introduced. New work calls into play fresh portions of the brain, and secures repose for those parts which have become exhausted. Idleness should be avoided by all. Men should never retire from business as long as they enjoy a fair degree of health. Idleness and inactivity are opposed to nature.
9. The average length of time which a person ought to sleep is eight hours out of the twenty-four, and, as a rule, those who take this amount enjoy the best health. The most favorable time for sleep is between the hours of 10 P.M. and 6 A.M. All excitement, the use of stimulants, and excessive fatigue tend to prevent sleep. Sleeping rooms should be well ventilated, and the air maintained at a equable temperature of as near 60 deg. Fahr. as possible. An inability to sleep at the proper time, or a regular inclination to sleep at other than the natural hours for it, is a certain indication of errors of habit, or of nervous derangement.
10. Prominent among all other measures for the maintenance of Health, is personal cleanliness. Activity in the functions of the skin is essential to perfect health, and this can only be secured by thoroughly bathing the entire body. Strictly, a person should bathe once every twenty-four or forty-eight hours. The body should be habituated to contact with cold water at all season of the year, so that warm water may not become a necessity. The simplest and most convenient bath, is the ordinary sponge-bath. An occasional hot-air, or Turkish bath, exerts a very beneficial influence. It cleans out the pores of the skin and increases its activity.
11. The emotions and the passions exert a powerful influence over the physical organism. It is important, therefore, that they be held under restraint by the reasoning faculties. This rule applies equally to joy, fear, and grief; to avarice, anger, and hatred; and, above all, to the sexual passion. They are a prolific source of disease of the nervous system, and have caused the dethronement of some of the most gifted intellects.
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THE PROGRESS OF MEDICINE.
During the last half century a great change has taken place in the treatment of disease. Medicine has advanced with rapid strides, from the narrow limits of mere empiricism, to the broader realm of rationalism, until to day it comprehends all the elements of an art and a science. Scientific researches and investigations have added many valuable truths to the general fund of medical learning, but much more has been effected by observation and empirical discovery. It is of little or no interest to the invalid to know whether the prescribed remedy is organic or inorganic, simple, compound, or complex. In his anxiety and distress of body, he seeks solely for relief, without regard to the character of the remedial agents employed. But this indifference on the part of the patient does not obviate the necessity for a thorough, scientific education on the part of the practitioner. Notwithstanding all the laws enacted to raise the standard of medicine, and thus protect the public from quackery, there yet exists a disposition among many to cling to all that savors of the miraculous, or supernatural. To insure the future advancement of the healing art, physicians must instruct mankind in Physiology, Hygiene, and Medicine. When the people understand the nature of diseases, their causes, methods of prevention and cure, they will not be easily deceived, and practitioners will be obliged to qualify themselves better for their labors. The practice of medicine is every year becoming more successful. New and improved methods of treating disease are being discovered and developed, and the conscientious physician will avail himself of all the means, by a knowledge of which he may benefit his fellow-men. The medical profession is divided into three principal schools, or sects.
THE ALLOPATHIC, REGULAR, OR OLD SCHOOL OF MEDICINE.
This is the oldest existing branch of the profession. To it is due the credit of collecting and arranging the facts and discoveries which form the foundation of the healing art. It has done, and is doing, much to place the science of medicine on a firm basis. To the text-books of this school, every student who would qualify himself for medical practice must resort, to gain that knowledge upon which depends his future success. The early practice of this branch of the profession was necessarily crude and empirical. Conservative in its character, it has ever been slow to recognize new theories and methods of practice, and has failed to adopt them until they have been incontrovertibly established. This conservatism was manifested in the opposition to Harvey when he propounded the theory of the circulation of the blood, and to Jenner when he discovered and demonstrated the beneficial effects of vaccination. Thus has it ever defended its established opinions against innovation; yet out of this very conservatism has grown much real good, for, although it has wasted no time or energy in the investigation of theories, yet it has accepted them when established. In this manner it has added to its fund of knowledge only those truths which are of real and intrinsic value.
The history of medicine may be divided into three eras. In the first, the practice of medicine was merely empiricism. Ignorant priests or astrologers administered drugs, concerning the properties of which they had no knowledge, to appease the wrath of mythological deities. In the second or heroic era, the lancet, mercury, antimony, opium, and the blister were employed indiscriminately as the sine qua non of medical practice. The present, with all its scientific knowledge of the human structure and functions, and its vast resources for remedying disease may be aptly termed the liberal era of medicine. The allopathic differs from the other schools, mainly in the application of remedies. In its ranks are found men, indefatigable in their labors, delving deep into the mysteries of nature, and who, for their scientific attainments and humane principles are justly considered ornaments to society and to their profession.
Although this school is of comparatively recent origin, yet it has gained a powerful hold upon the public favor, and numbers among its patrons very many intelligent citizens. This fact alone would seem to indicate that it possesses some merit. The homeopathic differs from the allopathic school principally in its "law of cure," which, according to Hahnemann, its founder, was the doctrine of "similia similibus curantur" or "like cures like." Its method of treatment is founded upon the assumption that if a drug be given to a healthy person, symptoms will occur which, if transpiring in disease, would be mitigated by the same drug. While it may be exceedingly difficult for a member of another school to accept this doctrine and comprehend the method founded upon it, yet no one can deny that it contains some elements of truth.
Imbued with the spirit of progress, many of its most intelligent and successful practitioners have resorted to the use of appreciable quantities of medicine. This school associates hydropathy with its practice, and usually inculcates rigid dietetic and hygienic regulations. Many homoeopathic remedies are thoroughly triturated with sugar of milk, which renders them more palatable and efficacious. Whether we attribute their cures to the infinitesimal doses which many homoeopathists employ, to their "law of cure," to good nursing, or to the power of nature, it is nevertheless true that their practice is measurably successful. No doubt the homoeopathic practice has modified that of the other schools, by proving that diseases may be alleviated by smaller quantities of medicine than were formerly employed.
THE ECLECTIC SCHOOL.
This school, founded by Wooster Beach, instituted the most strenuous opposition to the employment of mercury, antimony, the blister, and the lancet. The members of this new school proclaimed that the action of heroic and noxious medicines was opposed to the operation of the vital forces, and proposed to substitute in their place safer and more efficacious agents, derived exclusively from the vegetable kingdom. The eclectics have investigated the properties of indigenous plants and have discovered many valuable remedies, which a kind and bounteous nature has so generously supplied for the healing of her children. Marked success attended the employment of these agents. In 1852, a committee on "Indigenous Medical Botany," appointed by the "American Medical Association," acknowledged that the practitioners of the regular school had been extremely ignorant of the medical virtues of plants, even of those of their own neighborhoods. The employment of podophyllin and leptandrin as substitutes for mercurials has been so successful that they are now used by practitioners of all schools. Although claiming to have been founded upon liberal principles, it may be questioned whether its adherents have not been quite as exclusive and dogmatic as those whom they have opposed. It cannot be denied, however, that the eclectics have added many important remedies to the Materia Medica. Their writings are important and useful contributions to the physician's library.
THE LIBERAL AND INDEPENDENT PHYSICIAN.
After this brief review of the various medical sects, the reader may be curious to learn to what sect the physicians of the Invalids' Hotel and Surgical Institute belong. Among them are to be found graduates from the colleges of all the different schools. They are not restricted by the tenets of any one sect, but claim the right and privilege, nay, consider it a duty, to select from all, such remedies as careful investigation, scientific research, and an extensive experience, have proved valuable. They resort to any and every agent which has been proved efficacious, whether it be vegetable or mineral.
And here arises a distinction between sanative remedial agents and those which are noxious. Many practitioners deplore the use of poisons, and advocate innocuous medicines which produce only curative results. We agree with them in one proposition, namely, that improper medicines not only poison, but frequently utterly destroy the health and body of the patient. Every physician should keep steadily in view the final effects, as well as present relief, and never employ any agent without regard to its ulterior consequences. However, an agent which is noxious in health, may prove a valuable remedy in disease. When morbid changes have taken place in the blood and tissues, when a general diseased condition of the bodily organs has occurred, then an agent, which is poisonous in health, may prove curative. For instance it is admitted that alcohol is a poison; that it prevents healthful assimilation, solidifies pepsin, begets a morbid appetite; that it produces intoxication, and that its habitual use destroys the body. It is, therefore, neither a hygienic nor a sanative agent, but strictly a noxious one; yet, its very distinct antiseptic properties render it valuable for remedial purposes, since these qualities promptly arrest that fatal form of decomposition of the animal fluids which is occasioned by snake-venom, which produces its deadly effects in the same manner as a drop of yeast ferments the largest mash. Alcohol checks this poisonous and deadly process and neutralizes its effects. Thus, alcohol, although a noxious agent, possesses a special curative influence in a morbid state of the human system; but its general remedial effects do not entitle it to the rank of a hygienic agent. We believe that medicine is undergoing a gradual change from the darkness of the past, with its ignorance, superstition, and barbarism, to the light of a glorious future. At each successive step in the path of progress, medicine approaches one degree nearer the realm of an exact science. The common object of the practitioners of all medical schools is the alleviation of human suffering. The only difference between the schools is in the remedies employed, the size of dose administered, and the results attained. These are insufficient grounds for bitter sectarianism. We are all fellow laborers in the same field. Before us lies a boundless expanse for exploration. There are new conditions of disease to be learned, new remedies to be discovered, and new properties of old ones to be examined.
We do not deplore the fact, that there are different schools in medicine, for this science has not reached perfection, and they tend to stimulate investigation. The remarks of Herbert Spencer on the "Multiplication of Schemes of Juvenile Culture," may be pertinently applied to the different schools in medicine with increased force. He says: "It is clear that dissent in education results in facilitating inquiry by the division in labor. Were we in possession of the true method, divergence from it would, of course, be prejudicial; but the true method having to be found, the efforts of numerous independent seekers carrying out their researches in different directions, constitute a better agency for finding it than any that could be devised. Each of them struck by some new thought which probably contains more or less of basis in facts—each of them zealous on behalf of his plan, fertile in expedients to test its correctness, and untiring in its efforts to make known its success—each of them merciless in its criticism on the rest—there cannot fail, by composition of forces, to be a gradual approximation of all towards the right course. Whatever portion of the normal method any one of them has discovered, must, by the constant exhibition of its results, force itself into adoption; whatever wrong practices he has joined with it must, by repeated experiment and failure, be exploded. And by this aggregation of truths and elimination of errors, there must eventually be developed a correct and complete body of doctrine. Of the three phases through which human opinion passes—the unanimity of the ignorant, the disagreement of the inquiring, and the unanimity of the wise—it is manifest that the second is the parent of the third."
We believe the time is coming when those maladies which are now considered fatal will be readily cured—when disease will be disarmed of its terrors. To be successful, a physician must be independent, free from all bigotry, having no narrow prejudice against his fellow-men, liberal, accepting new truths from whatever source they come, free from restrictions of societies, and an earnest laborer in the interests of the Great Physician.
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REMEDIES FOR DISEASE.
It will be our aim, throughout this book, to prescribe such remedies as are within the easy reach of all, and which may be safely employed. Many of those of the vegetable class are indigenous to this country, and may be procured in their strength and purity, at the proper season, by those residing in the localities where they grow, while all others advised may be obtained at any good drug-store. We shall endeavor to recommend such as can be procured and prepared with the least trouble and expense to the patient, when it is believed that they will be equally as efficacious as more expensive medicines.
Having the invalid's best interests in view, it will often happen that we cannot prescribe better or cheaper remedies nor those which are more effective or easily obtained, than some of our standard preparations, which are sold by all druggists. We are aware that there is a popular, and not altogether unfounded prejudice against "patent medicines," owing to the small amount of merit which many of them possess. The term "Patent Medicine" does not apply to Dr. Pierce's remedies, as no patent has ever been asked or obtained for them, nor have they been urged upon the public as "cure alls." They are simply favorite prescriptions, which, in a very extensive practice, have proved their superior remedial virtues in the cure of the diseases for which they are recommended.
From the time of Hippocrates down to the present day, physicians have classified diseases according to their causes, character or symptoms. It has been proved that diseases apparently different may often be cured by the same remedy. The reason for this singular fact is obvious. A single remedy may possess a variety of properties. Quinine, among other properties has a tonic which suggests its use in cases of debility; an antiperiodic, which renders it efficient in ague; and an anti-febrile property, which renders it efficacious in cases of fever. The result produced varies with the quantity given, the time of its administration, and the circumstances under which it is employed. Every practicing physician has his favorite remedies, which he oftenest recommends or uses, because he has the greatest confidence in their virtues. The patient does not know their composition. Even prescriptions are usually written in a language unintelligible to anybody but the druggist. As much secrecy is employed as in the preparation of proprietary medicines. Does the fact that an article is prepared by a process known only to the manufacturer render that article less valuable? How many physicians know the elementary composition of the remedies which they employ, some of which never have been analyzed? Few practitioners know how morphine, quinine, podophyllin, leptandrin, pepsin, or chloroform, are made, or how nauseous drugs are transformed into palatable elixirs; yet they do not hesitate to employ them. Is it not inconsistent to use a prescription the composition of which is unknown to us, and discard another preparation simply because it is accompanied by a printed statement of its properties with directions for its use?
Various journals in this country, have at different times published absurd formulae purporting to be receipts for the preparation of "Dr. Sage's Catarrh Remedy" and Dr. Pierce's standard medicines, which, in most instances, have not contained a single ingredient which enters into the composition of these celebrated remedies.
In the manufacture of any pharmaceutical preparation, two conditions are essential to its perfection, viz: purity and strength of the materials, and appropriate machinery. The first is insured, by purchasing the materials in large quantities, whereby the exercise of greater care in selecting the ingredients can be afforded; and the second can only be accomplished where the business is extensive enough to warrant a large outlay of capital in procuring proper chemical apparatus. These facts apply with especial force to the manufacture of our medicines, their quality having been vastly improved since the demand has become so great as to require their manufacture in very large quantities. Some persons, while admitting that our medicines are good pharmaceutical compounds, object to them on the ground that they are too often used with insufficient judgment. We propose to obviate that difficulty by enlightening the people as to the structure and functions of their bodies, the causes, character, and symptoms of disease, and by indicating the proper and judicious employment of our medicines, together with such auxiliary treatment as may be necessary. Such is one of the designs of this volume.
PROPERTIES OF MEDICINE.
It is generally conceded that the action of a remedy upon the human system depends upon properties peculiar to it. The effects produced suggest the naming of these qualities, which have been scientifically classified. We shall name the diseases from their characteristic symptoms, and then, without commenting upon all the properties of a remedy, recommend its employment. Our reference to the qualities of any remedy, when we do make a particular allusion to them, we shall endeavor to make as easy and familiar as possible.
DOSE. All persons are not equally susceptible to the influence of medicines. As a rule, women require smaller doses than men, and children less than women. Infants are very susceptible to the effects of anodynes, even out of all relative proportion to other kinds of medicines. The circumstances and conditions of the system increase or diminish the effects of medicine, so that an aperient at one time may act as a cathartic at another, and a dose that will simply prove to be an anodyne when the patient is suffering great pain will act as a narcotic when he is not. This explains why the same dose often affects individuals differently. The following table is given to indicate the size of the dose, and is graduated to the age.
YEARS DOSE 21. . . . . . . . . .full 15. . . . . . . . . . 2-3 12. . . . . . . . . . 1-2 8 . . . . . . . . . . 1-3 6 . . . . . . . . . . 1-4 4 . . . . . . . . . . 1-6 2 . . . . . . . . . . 1-8 1 . . . . . . . . . . 1-12 1/2 . . . . . . 1-20 to 1-30
The doses mentioned in the following pages are those for adults, except when otherwise specified.
THE PREPARATION OF MEDICINES. The remedies which we shall mention for domestic use are mostly vegetable. Infusions and decoctions of these will often be advised on account of the fact that they are more available than the tinctures, fluid extracts, and concentrated principles, which we prefer, and almost invariably employ in our practice. Most of these medical extracts are prepared in our chemical laboratory under the supervision of a careful and skilled pharmaceutist. No one, we presume, would expect, with only a dish of hot water and a stew-kettle, to equal in pharmaceutical skill the learned chemist with all his ingeniously devised and costly apparatus for extracting the active, remedial principles from medicinal plants. Yet infusions and decoctions are not without their value; and from the inferior quality of many of the fluid extracts and other pharmaceutical preparations in the market, it may be questioned whether the former are not frequently as valuable as the latter. So unreliable are a majority of the fluid extracts, tinctures, and concentrated, active principles found in the drug-stores, that we long since found it necessary to have prepared in our laboratory, most of those which we employ. To the reliability of the preparations which we secure in this way we largely attribute our great success in the treatment of disease. Tinctures and fluid extracts are often prepared from old and worthless roots, barks, and herbs which have wholly lost their medicinal properties. Yet they are sold at just as high prices as those which are good. We manufacture our tinctures, fluid extracts, and concentrated, active principles from roots, barks, and herbs which are fresh, and selected with the greatest care. Many of the crude roots, barks, and herbs found in the market are inactive because they have been gathered at the wrong season. These, together with those that have been kept on hand so long as to have lost all medicinal value, are often sold in large quantities, and at reduced prices, to be manufactured into fluid extracts and tinctures. Of course, the preparations made from such materials are worthless. Whenever the dose of fluid extracts, tinctures, and concentrated, active principles, is mentioned in this chapter, the quantity advised is based upon our experience in the use of these preparations, as they are made in our laboratory, and the smallest quantity which will produce the desired effect is always given. When using most of the preparations found in the drug-stores, the doses have to be somewhat increased, and even then they will not always produce the desired effect, for reasons already given.
THE LIST OF MEDICINES which we shall introduce in this chapter will be quite limited, as we cannot hope, by making it extensive, that the non-professional reader would be able to prescribe with good judgment any other than the simpler remedies. Hence, we prefer, since we have not space in this volume to waste, to mention only a few of the most common remedies under each head or classification.
TINCTURES. Very uniform and reliable tinctures may be made of most indigenous plants, by procuring the part to be employed, at the proper season, while it is green and fresh, bruising it well, and covering it with good strong whiskey, or with alcohol diluted with one part of water to three of alcohol, corking tightly, and letting it stand about fourteen days, when the tincture may be filtered or poured off from the drugs, and will be ready for use. Prepared in this imperfect manner, they rill be found to be much more reliable than any of the fluid extracts found in the drug-stores. An excess of the crude drug should be used in preparing the tincture to insure a perfect saturation of the alcohol with its active principles.
HOMOEOPATHIC TINCTURES. The tinctures prepared by several of the German and French pharmaceutists, and called by them "Mother Tinctures," to distinguish them from the dilutions made therefrom, we have found to be very reliable, so much superior to any similar preparations made in this country that we purchase from them all we use of Pulsatilla, Staphisagria, Drosera and several others. They are prepared with great care from the green, crude material, and although high in price, when compared with other tinctures, yet the greater certainty of action which we secure in our prescriptions by their employment more than repays for the expense and trouble in procuring them, for of what account is expense to the true physician when life may depend upon the virtue of the agent he employs?
INFUSIONS. These are generally made by adding one-half ounce of the crude medicine to a pint of water, which should be closely covered, kept warm, and used as directed. Flowers, leaves, barks, and roots become impaired by age, and it is necessary to increase or diminish the dose according to the strength of the article employed.
DECOCTIONS. The difference between a decoction and an infusion is, that the plant or substance is boiled in the production of the former, in order to obtain its soluble, medicinal qualities. Cover the vessel containing the ingredients, thus confining the vapor, and shutting out the atmospheric air which sometimes impairs the active principles and their medicinal qualities. The ordinary mode of preparing a decoction is to use one ounce of the plant, root, bark, flower, or substance to a pint of water. The dose internally varies from a tablespoonful to one ounce.
Alteratives are a class of medicines which in some inexplicable manner, gradually change certain morbid actions of the system, and establish a healthy condition instead. They stimulate the vital processes to renewed activity, and arouse the excretory organs to remove matter which ought to be eliminated. They facilitate the action of the secretory glands, tone them up, and give a new impulse to their operations, so that they can more expeditiously rid the system of worn-out and effete materials. In this way they alter, correct, and purify the fluids, tone up the organs, and re-establish their healthy functions. Alteratives may possess tonic, laxative, stimulant, or diuretic properties all combined in one agent. Or we may combine several alteratives, each having only one of these properties in one remedy. We propose to enumerate only a few alteratives, and give the doses which are usually prescribed; the list which we employ in our practice is very extensive, but it cannot be made available for domestic use.
MANDRAKE (Podophyllum Peltatum), also called May-apple, is a most valuable alterative. The root is the part used. Dose—Of decoction, one to two teaspoonfuls; of tincture, six to eight drops; of fluid extract, three to five drops; of its active principle, Podophyllin, one-twelfth to one-eighth of a grain.
POKE (Phytolacca Decandra), also called Skoke, Garget, or Pigeon-berry, is a valuable alterative. The root is the part used. Dose—Of decoction, one to three teaspoonfuls; of fluid extract, three to ten drops; of concentrated principle, Phytolaccin, one-fourth to one grain.
YELLOW DOCK (Rumex Crispus), The part used is the root. Dose—Of the infusion, one to three fluid ounces three times daily; of fluid extract, ten to thirty drops; of tincture twenty to forty drops.
TAG ALDER (Alnus Rubra), This is otherwise known as the Smooth, Common, or Swamp Alder. The bark is the part used. It is excellent in scrofula, syphilis, cutaneous and all blood diseases. Dose—Of decoction, one or two tablespoonfuls from three to five times daily; of tincture, one or two teaspoonfuls; of fluid extract, one-half to one teaspoonful; of concentrated principle, Alnuin, one-half to one grain.
BLACK COHOSH (Macrotys or Cimicifuga Racemosa) The part used is the root. Its other common names are Black Snake-root, or Squaw-root. Black Cohosh is an alterative stimulant, nervine, diaphoretic, tonic, and a cerebro-spinal stimulant. It is a useful remedy. Dose—Of decoction, one-fourth to one ounce; of tincture, ten to fifteen drops; of fluid extract, five to ten drops; of the concentrated principle, Macrotin, one-eighth to one-half grain.
BLOOD-ROOT (Sanguinaria Canadensis), is also known as Red Puccoon. The part used is the root. In minute doses Blood-root is a valuable alterative, acting upon the biliary secretion and improving the circulation and digestion. Dose—Of powdered root, one-fourth to one-half grain; of tincture, one to two drops; of the fluid extract, one-half to one drop. When given in a fluid form it should be well diluted.
BURDOCK (Arctium Lappa). The root is the part used. Burdock is a valuable alterative in diseases of the blood. Dose—Of tincture, from one teaspoonful to a tablespoonful twenty minutes before meals; of fluid extract, one to two teaspoonfuls.
BLUE FLAG (Iris Versicolor). The part used is the root. Dose—Of the tincture, five to ten drops; of fluid extract, three to ten drops; of concentrated principle, Iridin, one-half to two grains.
SWEET ELDER (Sambucus Canadensis). Sweet Elder-flowers are a valuable alterative, diuretic, mucous and glandular stimulant, excellent in eruptive, cutaneous, and scrofulous diseases of children. An infusion, fluid extract, or syrup, may be used in connection with the "Golden Medical Discovery." Both will be found valuable for cleansing the blood and stimulating the functions to a healthy condition. Dose—Of the infusion of the flowers, from one-half to one ounce, if freely taken, will operate as a laxative; of fluid extract, one-fourth to one-half teaspoonful. The flowers, or inner bark of the root, simmered in fresh butter, make a good ointment for most cutaneous affections.
IODINE. This agent, in the several forms of Iodide of Potassium, Iodide of Ammonium, Iodide of Iron, and Iodide of Lime, is largely employed by physicians, and often with most happy results. But for domestic use we cannot advise its employment, as it is liable to injure the invalid, when its action is carried too far, which is apt to be the case, when not administered under the supervision of a competent physician.
MERCURY. The various preparations of mercury have a profound, alterative effect upon the system. When taken for some time, they change the quality and composition of the blood; cause a diminution in the number of red blood-corpuscles, and an increase in the various effete materials. In the vast majority of cases we prefer the vegetable alteratives, but in rare instances they exert a beneficial influence, in small doses. None of the preparations of mercury should be taken internally without the advice of a skillful physician, therefore, we shall not give their doses.
THE COMPOUNDING OF ALTERATIVES.
The efficacy of this class of remedies can be greatly increased by properly combining several of them into one compound.
This requires a knowledge of Pharmaceutical Chemistry; i.e., the preparation of compounds founded on the chemical relation and action of their several remedial, active principles. Many practitioners make combinations of remedies which neutralize each other's influence, instead of extending their efficacy and curative power.
DR. PIERCE'S "GOLDEN MEDICAL DISCOVERY," or Alterative Extract. This compound is a highly nutritive and tonic preparation, combining the remedial properties of the best vegetable alteratives at present known to the medical profession. In perfecting this alterative compound, and likewise other standard preparations of medicine, we have made an outlay of many thousand dollars for chemical apparatus, and special machinery by the aid of which these remedies have been brought to their present perfection. Great pains are taken to obtain the materials at the right season of the year, properly cured so that none of their remedial qualities may be impaired. We, therefore, can with great confidence recommend Dr. Pierce's "Golden Medical Discovery" as one of the best preparations of the alterative class. Like all others of this type, its action is insensible, producing gradual changes, arousing the excretory glands to remove morbid materials, and at the same time toning the secretory organs. The manufacture of this compound is under the special supervision of a competent chemist and pharmaceutist, and it is now put up in bottles wrapped with full directions for its use. We can confidently recommend this compound whenever an alterative is required to cleanse the blood, tone the system, increase its nutrition, and establish a healthy condition. For these reasons we shall often advise its employment.
DR. PIERCE'S PLEASANT PURGATIVE PELLETS. These pellets combine the pure, concentrated, active principles of several vegetable alteratives, and the result is, that within the small compass of a few grains he has most happily blended and chemically condensed these properties so that their action upon the ANIMAL ECONOMY is sanative and universal. They awaken the latent powers, quicken the tardy functions, check morbid deposits, dissolve hard concretions, remove obstructions, promote depuration, harmonize and restore the functions, equalize the circulation, and encourage the action of the nervous system. They stimulate the glands, increase the peristaltic movement of the intestines, tone the nutritive processes, while aiding in evacuating the bowels. All this they accomplish without corroding the tissues or vitiating the fluids. Their assistance is genial, helping the system to expel worn out materials, which would become noxious if retained. Having expended their remedial powers upon the various functions of the body, they are themselves expelled along with other waste matter, leaving behind them no traces of irritation. This cannot be said of mercurials, or of other harsh, mineral alteratives. These Pellets may be safely employed when the system is feeble, frail, and delicate, by giving them in less quantities. Dose—As an alterative, only one or two Pellets should be taken daily.
ALKALIES. These constitute an important list of remedial agents, their administration being frequently indicated. The employment of other medicines frequently should be preceded by the administration of an agent of this class, to neutralize excessive acidity in the stomach and bowels. Unless this be done, many medicines will fail to produce their specific effects.
SULPHITE OF SODA (Sodae Sulphis). This salt, as well as the Hyposulphite of Soda, is not only generally preferable for administration on account of its unirritating character and the smallness of the dose required, but also because it is a valuable antiseptic agent. The Sulphite should not be confounded with the Sulphate of Soda (Glauber's Salt). Dose—This is from three to ten grains.
SALERATUS (Potassae Bicarbonas). This is a favorite domestic antacid. Dose—Five to fifteen grains is the amount.
As alkalies are important and often indicated as remedial agents, acids, so their re-agents, acids, are also frequently necessary to meet opposite conditions of the fluids of the system.
HYDROCHLORIC OR MURIATIC ACID. This agent may be administered in doses of from five to ten drops, largely diluted in water or gruel.
AROMATIC SULPHURIC ACID, or Elixir of Vitriol, is the most agreeable form of Sulphuric Acid for administration, and may be given in doses of from five to fifteen drops, largely diluted with water.
In taking acids, they should be sucked through a straw, and not allowed to come in contact with the teeth, as otherwise the latter organs will be injured by their effects; or should the acid come in contact with the teeth, the mouth should be immediately rinsed with a solution of saleratus or soda, to neutralize the acid.
Anodynes are those medicines which relieve pain by blunting the sensibility of the nerves, or of the brain, so that it does not appreciate the morbid sensation. An anodyne may be a stimulant in one dose, and a narcotic in a larger one. The properties of different anodyne agents vary, consequently they produce unlike effects. The size of the dose required, differs according to circumstances and condition. An adult, suffering acute pain, requires a much larger dose to produce an anodyne effect than one who is a chronic sufferer. An individual accustomed to the use of anodynes, requires a much larger dose to procure relief than one who is not. Doses may be repeated, until their characteristic effects are produced, after an interval of thirty or forty minutes. When the stomach is very sensitive and will not tolerate their internal administration, one-sixth of a grain of Morphia can be inserted beneath the skin, by means of a hypodermic syringe. Relief is more quickly experienced, and the anodyne effect is much more lasting than when taken into the stomach.
OPIUM (Papaver Somniferum). Opium is a stimulant, anodyne, or narcotic, according to the size of the dose administered. Dose—Of the dry powder, one-fourth to one grain; of tincture (Laudanum), five to fifteen drops; of camphorated tincture (Paregoric), one-half to one teaspoonful; of
Morphine, one-eighth to one-fourth grain; of Dover's Powder three to five grains.
HYOSCYAMUS (Hyoscyamus Niger), commonly known as Henbane. The herb is used. It is a powerful narcotic, and unlike Opium, does not constipate the bowels, but possesses a laxative tendency. Therefore, it may be employed as an anodyne for allaying pain, calming the mind, inducing sleep and arresting spasms, when opiates are inadmissible. Dose—Of alcoholic extract, one-half to two grains; of fluid extract, five to ten drops; of the concentrated principle, Hyoscyamin, one-twelfth to one-fourth of a grain.
POISON HEMLOCK (Conium Maculatum). The leaves are the parts used. Poison Parsley, as it is sometimes called, is an anodyne, narcotic, and an excellent alterative. Dose—Of fluid extract, two to six drops; of solid extract, one-fourth to one-half grain.
BELLADONNA (Atropa Belladonna) or Deadly Nightshade. The herb or leaves are a valuable agent. In overdoses, it is an energetic, narcotic poison. In medicinal doses it is anodyne, antispasmodic, diaphoretic, and diuretic. It is excellent in neuralgia, epilepsy, mania, amaurosis, whooping-cough, stricture, rigidity of the os uteri, and is supposed by some to be a prophylactic or preventive of Scarlet Fever. Its influence upon the nerve centers is remarkable. It relaxes the blood vessels on the surface of the body and induces capillary congestion, redness of the eye, scarlet appearance of the face, tongue, and body. Dose—Of fluid extract, one-half to one drop; of tincture, one to two drops; of concentrated principle, Atropin, one-thirtieth to one-sixteenth of a grain; of the Alkaloid, Atropia, one-sixtieth of a grain. Even the most skillful chemists are very cautious in compounding these latter active principles, and the danger of an overdose is great.
CAMPHOR. This drug is an anodyne, stimulant, and diaphoretic, and, in large doses, a narcotic and an irritant. It is an excellent stimulant for liniments. Dose—Of the powder, one to five grains; of the tincture, ten to twenty drops, given in simple syrup.
HOPS (Humulus Lupulus). This is an excellent remedy in wakefulness, and may be used when opium is contra-indicated. A bag of the leaves, moistened with whiskey and placed as a pillow under the head, acts as an anodyne. Dose—Of the infusion of the leaves, from one to four ounces; of the fluid extract, one-fourth to three-fourths of a teaspoonful; of the concentrated principle, Humulin, one to three grains.
DR. PIERCE'S COMPOUND EXTRACT OF SMART-WEED. This anodyne compound is made by uniting several of the most valuable agents of this class, and its medicinal qualities are rendered still more efficacious by the addition of certain stimulating articles. It is free from narcotic properties which are liable to produce deleterious results, and has been found to be not only harmless in its action, but very genial and effectual withal, and most reliable as a stimulant and diaphoretic remedy.
Anthelmintic means "against a worm," and is a term employed to designate those medicines which destroy or expel worms. It means the same as Vermifuge. Little is understood concerning the origin of worms. There are five distinct varieties described by authors as being more common than others. There is the long worm, the short, or pin-worm, the thread-worm, the tape-worm, and the broad tape-worm peculiar to some countries of Europe. Irritation of the alimentary canal, from whatever cause usually produces an abundant secretion of mucus, which is thought to be a condition favorable for their production. Therefore, those medicines which remove the cause of this irritation tend to diminish the number, if not to entirely destroy the worms. Some medicines kill the worms, others expel them alive. The remedies which successfully remove one kind of worm, have little effect upon another, and to meet these different conditions, we have a variety of worm-destroying medicines. The pin-worm, inhabits the rectum, and may be destroyed by injecting into it a strong solution of salt, or decoction of aloes, and when it is allowed to pass away, the rectum should be anointed with vaseline, butter, or lard. The eggs of this worm are developed around the orifice of the large intestine, and when this latter precaution is not practiced every time there is a passage from the bowels, they will multiply as rapidly as they can be destroyed. Generally, vermifuge remedies should be taken when the stomach is empty, and should be followed by the administration of a cathartic in two hours after the last dose is administered.
SANTONIN. This is decidedly the most reliable anthelmintic known to the medical profession. It is deservedly a popular remedy for worms, and when combined with Podophyllin, is very efficacious in removing the pin-worm. Dose—For an adult, two to three grains of the powdered Santonin, repeated every three hours until four or five doses are taken, when it should be followed by a cathartic.
SAGE (Salvia Officinalis). Sage is a common and excellent domestic remedy for worms. Make an infusion of Sage and Senna leaves, and drink freely until it acts as a cathartic.
PINK-ROOT (Spigelia Marilandica). Pink-root is one of the most active and certain anthelmintics for children. It is indigenous to the United States. When taken in too large quantities, it is apt to purge, give rise to vertigo, dimness of vision, and even to convulsions; therefore, it should be combined with some cathartic. Dose—Of the infusion, one ounce at night, followed by physic in the morning.
COMMON SALT (Chloride of Sodium). Common table salt is an anthelmintic, and may be used in an emergency. Salt water is a very common domestic remedy for worms. Dose—In solution, one-quarter to one-half teaspoonful.
BALMONY (Chelone Glabra). This is also tonic and anthelmintic, and is valuable in debility, dyspepsia, jaundice, and hepatic affections. It also is known as Snake-head. Dose—Of the infusion, one to two ounces; of the concentrated principle, Chelonin, from half to one grain.
MALE FERN (Aspidium Filix Mas). Male Fern is the anthelmintic which is considered especially effectual in removing the tape-worm. Dose—Of the powder, one to two drachms, given morning and evening in syrup, followed by a brisk cathartic. The dose of the tincture of the buds in ether is from eight to thirty drops.
POPLAR (Populus Tremuloides). The White or Aspen Poplar is a common tree, and contains active principles termed Populin and Salicin, both of which are tonic. An infusion of the bark is a remedy for worms. Dose—Of the tea made from the bark, one to four ounces; of Populin, from one-half to two grains.
It is well understood that malarial diseases are characterized by a periodicity which indicates their nature. Antiperiodics prevent the recurrence of the periodic manifestations, and hence their name.
QUININE (Sulphate of Quinia). Quinine is a tonic, febrifuge, and antiperiodic. It should generally be administered during the intervals between the febrile paroxysms. It is beneficial also in all diseases accompanied by debility. The dose varies from one to six grains according to indications. Frequently it is given in much larger quantities, but we cannot advise such for domestic use.
PRUSSIAN BLUE (Ferri Ferrocyanidum). Ferrocyanide of Iron is an excellent tonic and antiperiodic remedy, and often is combined with quinine. Dose—From two to five grains.
BONESET (Eupatorium Perfoliatum), or Thoroughwort. This is tonic, diaphoretic, aperient, and possesses some antiperiodic properties; the warm infusion is emetic. Dose—Of the infusion, one to four ounces; of the fluid extract, from half to one teaspoonful; of the active principle, Eupatorin, one to three grains.
THE "GOLDEN MEDICAL DISCOVERY" has gained an enviable reputation in malarial districts for the cure of ague. From observing its action in the cure of this and other miasmatic diseases, and knowing its composition, we are thoroughly satisfied that it contains chemical properties which neutralize and destroy the miasmatic or ague poison which is in the system, and, at the same time, produces a rapid excretion of the neutralized poisons. One strong proof of this is found in the fact that persons who are cured with it are not so liable to relapse as those in whom the chills are broken with Quinine or other agents. No bad effects are experienced after an attack of ague which has been cured with the "Golden Medical Discovery." This cannot be said of Quinine, Peruvian Bark, Arsenic, and Mercurials, which comprise nearly the whole list of remedies usually resorted to by physicians for arresting ague. The "Golden Medical Discovery" not only has the merit of being a certain antidote for miasmatic diseases, but is pleasant to the taste, a matter of no small importance, especially when administered to children. To break the chills, this medicine should be taken in doses of four teaspoonfuls three times a day, and if this treatment pursued for three days, does not entirely arrest the chills, these doses may be repeated in alternation with five-grain doses of quinine for the three succeeding days. But in no case should more than this amount of the "Golden Medical Discovery" be given.
ANTISEPTICS AND DISINFECTANTS.
Antiseptics prevent, while disinfectants arrest putrefaction. Oxygen is a natural disinfectant, but a powerful inciter of change. Although this element is the cause of animal and vegetable decay, yet oxidation is the grand process by which the earth, air, and sea are purified. A few substances are both antiseptic and disinfectant. Heat up to a temperature of 140 deg. Fahr. promotes putrescence, but above that point, is a drier or disorganizer, and destroys the source of infection.
YEAST (Cerevisiae Fermentum). Yeast is an antiseptic, and is effective in all diseases in which there is threatened putridity. Used externally, it is often combined with elm bark and charcoal, and applied to ulcers, in which there is a tendency to gangrene. Dose—One tablespoonful in wine or porter, once in two or three hours.
CREASOTE. This is a powerful antiseptic. It is used in a solution of glycerine, oil, water, or syrup. Dose—One to two drops, largely diluted.
CARBOLIC ACID is a crystalline substance resembling creasote in its properties. It is an antiseptic, and is used both internally and externally. Dose—One-fourth to one-half drop of the melted crystals, very largely diluted. Externally, in solution, one to five grains of the crystals to one ounce of the solvent.
WHITE VITRIOL (Zinci Sulphas). White vitriol is a valuable disinfectant, as it will arrest mortification. In solution it is employed in ulcers and cancers and also as a gargle in putrid sore throat. Dose—One-half to two grains in a pill; in solution, one to ten grains in an ounce of water.
PERMANGANATE OF POTASH (Potassae Permanganas). This substance is an energetic deodorizer and disinfectant. A solution containing from one to twenty grains in an ounce of water is used as a lotion for foul ulcers. Dose—One-eighth to one-fourth of a grain.
WILD INDIGO (Baptisia Tinctoria). The root is the part used. This plant possesses valuable antiseptic properties. It is an excellent lotion for ill-conditioned ulcers, malignant sore throat, nursing sore-mouth, syphilitic ophthalmia, etc. It is sometimes administered in scarlet and typhus fevers, and in all diseases in which there is a tendency to putrescence. Dose—Of the infusion, one-fourth to one-half ounce; of the fluid extract, from three to ten drops, and of the concentrated, active principle of the plant, Baptisin, from one to two grains.
Antispasmodics are a class of remedies which relieve cramps, convulsions, and spasms, and are closely allied to nervines. Indeed some authors class them together. The following are a few of the most important antispasmodics:
ASSAFETIDA (Assafetida Ferula). This is a powerful antispasmodic. It is employed in hysteria, hypochondria, convulsions, and spasms, when unaccompanied by inflammation. Dose—Of the gum or powder, from three to ten grains, usually administered in the form of a pill; of the tincture, from one-half to one teaspoonful.
YELLOW JESSAMINE (Gelseminum Sempervirens). The root is the part used. This is a valuable remedy in various
diseases when associated with restlessness and a determination of the blood to the brain; also in the neuralgia. Dose—Of the fluid extract, three to eight drops; of the concentrated principle, Gelsemin, one-fourth to one grain. The use of this drug by non-professional persons should be attended with great caution.
VALERIAN (Valeriana Officinalis). The root is the part used. Valerian is an effective remedy in cases of nervousness and restlessness. Dose—Of the infusion, (one-half ounce to a pint of water) one-half ounce; of the tincture, one-half to two tablespoonfuls; of the ammoniated tincture of valerian, from one-half to two teaspoonfuls in sweetened water or milk; of the valerianate of ammonia, one-half to three grains.
YELLOW LADY'S SLIPPER (Cypripedium Pubescens). The root is the part used. This is a useful remedy in hysteria, chorea, and all cases of irritability. Dose—Of the powder, fifteen to thirty grains; of the infusion, one ounce; of the fluid extract, fifteen to thirty drops; of the concentrated principle, Cypripedin, one-half to two grains.
WILD YAM (Dioscorea Villosa). The root is the part used. This is a powerful antispasmodic, and has been successfully used in bilious colic, nausea, and spasm of the bowels. Dose—Of the infusion (two ounces to a pint of water), one to two ounces; of the fluid extract, five to fifteen drops; of the concentrated principle, Dioscorein, one-half to one grain.
HIGH CRANBERRY (Viburnum Opulus.) The bark is the part used. It is also known as Cramp Bark. This is a powerful antispasmodic, and is effective in relaxing spasms of all kinds. It is a valuable agent in threatened abortion. Dose—Of the infusion, one-half to one ounce; of the fluid extract, one-half to one teaspoonful; of the concentrated principle, Viburnin, one-half to two grains. These doses may be increased if necessary.
Astringents are medicines which condense and coagulate the tissues, thereby arresting discharges. When taken into the mouth, they produce the sensation known as puckering. They are used internally and locally. The term styptic is used as a synonym of astringent, but is generally employed to designate those astringents which arrest hemorrhage, or bleeding.
LOGWOOD (Haematoxylon Campechianum). Logwood is a mild astringent, well adapted to remedy the relaxed condition of the bowels after cholera infantum. Dose—Of powdered extract, five to ten grains; of the decoction, one ounce; of the fluid extract, fifteen to thirty drops.
BLACKBERRY ROOT (Rubus Villosus). This astringent is a favorite, domestic remedy in affections of the bowels. Dose—Of the infusion (bruised root), one-half to one ounce, sweetened.
WITCH-HAZEL (Hamamelis Virginica). The parts used are the leaves and bark. This is a most valuable astringent and exerts a specific action upon the nervous system. It arrests many forms of uterine hemorrhage with great promptness, is a valuable agent in the treatment of piles, and is useful in many forms of chronic throat and bronchial affections. Dose-Of the infusion, one-fourth to one-half ounce; of the fluid extract, eight to fifteen grains; of the concentrated principle, Hamamelin, one fourth to one grain.
CRANESBILL (Geranium Maculatum). The root is used. This plant is also known as Crow-foot, and Spotted Geranium. It is a pleasant, but powerful astringent. Dose—Of the fluid extract, ten to thirty drops; of the concentrated principle, Geranin, one to two grains.
HARDHACK (Spirea Tomentosa), Spirea, or Meadow Sweet. The stem and leaves are used. It is a tonic and an astringent, and is used in diarrhea and cholera-infantum. Dose—Of the infusion, one-half to one ounce; of the fluid extract, three to six drops.
BUGLE-WEED (Lycopus Virginicus). This is variously known as Water-hoarhound and Water-bugle. It is sedative and tonic, as well as astringent, and is employed in hemorrhages and in incipient phthisis. Dose—Of the infusion, one to two ounces; of the fluid extract, fifteen to twenty-five drops; of the concentrated principle, Lycopin, one-half to one grain.
CANADA FLEABANE (Erigeron Canadense). The leaves and flowers are used. This plant, sometimes known as Colt's-tail, Pride-weed, or Butter-weed, is astringent, and has been efficiently employed in uterine hemorrhages. Dose—Of the infusion (two ounces of the herb to one pint of water), one to two ounces; of the oil, five to ten drops on sugar, repeated at intervals of from one to four hours.
CATECHU (Acacia Catechu). A tincture of this plant is a pure, powerful astringent, and is especially useful in chronic diarrhea, chronic catarrh, and chronic dysentery. Dose—Of the powder, five to twenty grains; of the tincture, one-half to two teaspoonfuls.
TANNIN (Acidum, Tannicum). This acid has a wide range of application. It is used as an astringent. Dose—One to five grains.
GALLIC ACID (Acidum Gallicum). This remedy is used chiefly in hemorrhages. Dose—Three to five grains. In severe hemorrhages, this quantity should be administered every half hour, until the bleeding is checked.
Carminatives are medicines which allay intestinal pain, arrest or prevent griping caused by cathartics and exert a general soothing effect. They are aromatic, and to a certain extent, stimulant.
ANISE-SEED (Pimpinella Anisum). Anise is a pleasant, aromatic carminative, and is used in flatulent colic. Dose—Of the powdered seed, ten to fifteen grains; of the infusion (a teaspoonful of seed to a gill of water), sweetened, may be given freely; of the oil, five to ten drops on sugar.
FENNEL-SEED (Anethum Foeniculum). This is one of our most grateful aromatics, and is sometimes employed to modify the action of senna and rhubarb. Dose—Same as that of anise-seed.
GINGER (Zingiber Officinale). The root is the part used. This is a grateful stimulant and carminative. Dose—Of the powder, ten to twenty grains; of the infusion, one teaspoonful in a gill of water; of the tincture, twenty to thirty drops; of the essence, ten to fifteen drops; of the syrup, one teaspoonful.
WINTERGREEN (Gaultheria Procumbens). The leaves are used. This plant possesses stimulant, aromatic, and astringent properties. The essence of Wintergreen is carminative, and is used in colics. Dose—Of the essence, one-half to one teaspoonful in sweetened water; of the oil, three to five drops on sugar.
PEPPERMINT (Mentha Piperita). Peppermint is a powerful stimulant, carminative, and antispasmodic. It is used in the treatment of spasms, colic, and hysteria. Dose—The infusion may be used freely. The essence may be taken in doses of fifteen to thirty drops in sweetened warm water; of the oil, one to five drops on sugar.
SPEARMINT (Mentha Viridis). The carminative properties of spearmint are inferior to those of peppermint, and its chief employment is for its diuretic and febrifuge virtues. Dose—Same as that of peppermint.
COMPOUND EXTRACT OF SMART-WEED. Dr. Pierce's Extract of Smart-weed is a valuable carminative and aromatic stimulant, and has been employed with marked success in all diseases in which this class of remedies is required.
Cathartics, or Purgatives are medicines which act upon the bowels and increase the secretions and evacuations. In many parts of the country, these agents are known as purges, or physics. They have been variously divided and subdivided, usually with reference to the energy of their operations or the character of the evacuations produced.
Laxatives, or Aperients, are mild cathartics. Purgatives act with more energy and produce several discharges which are of a more liquid character and more copious than the former.
Drastics are those cathartics which produce numerous evacuations accompanied by more or less intestinal irritation.
Hydragogues are those purgatives which produce copious, watery discharges.
Cholagogues are those purgatives which act upon the liver, stimulating its functions. Cathartics constitute a class of remedies which are almost universally employed by families and physicians.
JALAP (Ipomoea Jalapa). The root is used. It is a drastic and a hydragogue cathartic. Formerly it was combined with equal parts of calomel. From this fact it received the name of "ten and ten." Dose—Of the powder, five to twenty grains; of the fluid extract, ten to fifteen drops; of the solid extract, two to four grains; of the concentrated principle, Jalapin, one-half to two grains.
GAMBOGE (Gambogia). The gum is used. Gamboge is a powerful drastic, hydragogue cathartic, which is apt to produce nausea and vomiting. It is employed in dropsy. It should never be given alone, but combined with milder cathartics. It accelerates their action while they moderate its violence. Dose—Of the powder, one-half to two grains. This substance combined with aloes and sometimes with scammony, constitutes the basis of the numerous varieties of large, cathartic pills found in the market.
CULVER'S-ROOT. (Leptandra Virginica). The root is used. This plant, known under the various names of Culver's Physic, Black-root, Tall Speedwell, and Indian Physic, is a certain cholagogue, laxative, and cathartic. Dose—Of decoction, one to two fluid ounces; of fluid extract, ten to twenty drops; of tincture, twenty to thirty drops; of the concentrated, active principle, Leptandrin, which is but feebly cathartic, as a laxative, two to five grains.
RHUBARB (Rheum Palmatum). This is much used as a domestic remedy, and by the profession, for its laxative, tonic, and astringent effects. It is employed in bowel complaints. Dose—Of the powder, ten to thirty grains; of the tincture, one-half to two teaspoonfuls; of the fluid extract, ten to thirty drops; of the solid extract, three to five grains; of the syrup, and aromatic syrup, an excellent remedy for children, one-half to one teaspoonful.
CASCARA SAGRADA (Rhamnus Purshiana), is a very efficient remedy in chronic constipation. Dose—Of the fluid extract, from ten to twenty drops taken in a tablespoonful of water. The unpleasant taste may be disguised with the extract of liquorice.
CASTOR OIL (Oleum Ricini). Dose—From one to four teaspoonfuls. It may be disguised by rubbing it with an equal quantity of glycerine and adding one or two drops of oil of anise, cinnamon, or wintergreen.
BUTTERNUT (Juglans Cinerea). The bark is the part used. Butternut is a mild cathartic, which resembles rhubarb in its property of evacuating the bowels without irritating the alimentary canal. Dose—Of the extract, as a cathartic, five to ten grains; of the fluid extract, one-half to one teaspoonful; of the concentrated principle, Juglandin, one to three grains. As a laxative, one-half of these quantities is sufficient.
ALOES (Aloe) The gum is used. This cathartic acts upon the lower part of the bowels and sometimes causes piles; though some late authors claim that in small doses it is a valuable remedy for piles. Dose—In powder or pill, three to ten grains; as a laxative, one to three grains.
EPSOM SALTS (Magnesia Sulphas). Its common name is "Salts." Much used in domestic practice. Dose—One-fourth to one-half ounce.
DR. PIERCE'S PLEASANT PELLETS, being entirely vegetable in their composition, operate without disturbance to the system, diet, or occupation. Put up in glass vials. Always fresh and reliable. As a laxative, alterative, or gently acting but searching cathartic, these little Pellets give the most perfect satisfaction. Sick Headache, Bilious Headache, Dizziness, Constipation, Indigestion, Bilious Attacks, and all derangements of the stomach and bowels, are promptly relieved and permanently cured by the use of Dr. Pierce's Pleasant Pellets. In explanation of the remedial power of these Pellets over so great a variety of diseases, it may truthfully be said that their action upon the system is universal, not a gland or tissue escaping their sanative influence.
Everybody, now and then, needs a gentle laxative to assist nature a little; or, a more searching and cleansing, yet gentle cathartic, to remove offending matter from the stomach and bowels and tone up and invigorate the liver and quicken its tardy action. Thereby the "Pleasant Pellets" cure biliousness, sick and bilious headache, costiveness, or constipation of the bowels, sour stomach, windy belchings, "heart-burn," pain and distress after eating, and kindred derangements of the liver, stomach and bowels.
Persons subject to any of these troubles should never be without a vial of the "Pleasant Pellets" at hand. In proof of their superior excellence it can be truthfully said that they are always adopted as a household remedy after the first trial.
The "Pleasant Pellets" are far more effective in arousing the liver to action than "blue pills," the old-fashioned compound cathartic pills, calomel or other mercurial preparations, and have the further merit of being purely vegetable in their composition and perfectly harmless in any condition of the system. Furthermore, no particular care is required while using them.
Being composed of the choicest, concentrated vegetable extracts, their cost of production is much more than that of most pills found in the market, yet from forty to forty-four of them are put up in each glass vial, as sold through druggists, and can be had at the price of the more ordinary and cheaper made pills. Once used, they are always in favor. Their secondary effect is to keep the bowels open and regular, not to further constipate, as is the case with other pills. Hence, their great popularity with sufferers from habitual constipation, piles and their attendant discomfort and manifold derangements.
For all laxative and cathartic purposes the "Pleasant Pellets" are infinitely superior to all "mineral waters," sediltz powders, "salts," castor oil, fruit syrups (so-called), laxative "teas," and the many other purgative compounds sold in various forms.
If people generally, would pay more attention to properly regulating the action of their bowels, they would have less frequent occasion to call for their doctor's services to subdue attacks of dangerous diseases. Hence it is of great importance to know what safe, harmless agent best serves the purpose of producing the desired action.
DIRECTIONS FOR USING DR. PIERCE'S PLEASANT PELLETS.
In all cases, the size of dose to be taken must be regulated somewhat by the known susceptibility of the individual to the action of laxative and cathartic medicines. Some persons' bowels are readily acted upon by small doses, while others require more. As a general rule, the smaller doses which we recommend, are quite sufficient, and produce the best results if persisted in for a reasonable length of time.
FOR A GENTLE APERIENT, OR LAXATIVE, take one or not more than two and preferably in the morning, on an empty stomach.
FOR A GENTLE CATHARTIC, two or three are generally sufficient, if taken in the morning, on an empty stomach.
FOR A VERY ACTIVE, SEARCHING CATHARTIC, four to six may be taken in the morning, on an empty stomach.
FOR A CHILD OF TWO TO FOUR YEARS, one-half of a Pellet given in a little sauce of some kind, or soft candy, will be sufficient for a laxative, or one for a mild cathartic.
FOR A CHILD OF FOUR TO EIGHT YEARS, one for a laxative or two for a cathartic will act nicely, if given on an empty stomach.
AS A DINNER PILL.—To promote digestion and increase the appetite, take only one Pellet each day after dinner.
To overcome the disagreeable effects of a too hearty meal, take two Pellets as soon as conscious of having overloaded the stomach.
IN ALL CHRONIC DISEASES, it is of the utmost importance that the bowels be kept regular, yet thorough purgation should be avoided, as it tends to debilitate the system. Small laxative doses of one or at most two Pellets, taken daily and continued for a long time, is the plan that we would recommend to produce the best results.
IN DROPSY, an occasional active cathartic dose of the Pellets of say 4 to 6, taken once in a week or ten days, will do good, if, in the interval between these doses, Dr. Pierce's Golden Medical Discovery be taken to invigorate and regulate the system.
TO BREAK UP SUDDEN ATTACKS OF COLDS, FEVERS, AND INFLAMMATIONS.—It is only in these sudden and severe attacks of acute diseases that we recommend the Pellets to be taken in active purgative doses, and in these cases only one large or cathartic dose of say 5 or 6 Pellets should be taken.
In colds, fevers, and inflammatory attacks, warm sweating teas should be taken freely, and hot foot baths, or a hot general bath, employed to assist in equalizing the circulation of the blood and restoring the equilibrium of the system.
SUPPRESSED MENSTRUATION.—This combined treatment of an active dose of Pellets, coupled with the use of a hot bath, foot bath, or, better still, a hot sitz-bath, will bring on menstruation, when suppressed from taking cold. In the latter case the effect will be insured if, in addition to the use of the Pellets and baths, a full dose of Dr. Pierce's Compound Extract of Smart-Weed, or Water Pepper, be also used.
Caustics are substances which have the power of destroying or disorganizing animal structures. By their action they destroy the tissue to which they are applied, and form a crust, which is thrown off by a separation from the parts beneath. Their caustic property may be destroyed by dilution with other substances, to such an extent that they will only irritate or stimulate, and not destroy. Much care is necessary in their employment, and it is not expected that the unprofessional reader will have much to do with them; hence, we have deemed it best not to give a list of these agents.
Counter-irritants are substances which produce irritation of the part to which they are applied, varying in degree from a slight redness to a blister or pustule. They are applied to the surface with a view of producing an irritation to relieve irritation or inflammation in some other or deeper seated part. They are a class of agents which we very seldom employ, and, hence, we shall notice only a couple of the most simple.
MUSTARD (Sinapis). The flour of mustard, which is best adapted for domestic use, is employed in the form of a paste spread on cloth. It takes effect in a few moments; the length of time it remains in contact with the skin and the strength of the mustard determine the effect produced.
HORSE-RADISH (Cochlearia Armoracia). The leaves are the parts used. Let them wilt and bind them on the part affected. They act nearly as energetically as mustard.
Diaphoretics are medicines which increase perspiration. Those which occasion profuse sweating are termed Sudorifics. The two terms indicate different degrees of the same operation. They constitute an important element in domestic practice, on account of the salutary effects which generally follow their action. Their operation is favored by warmth externally, and warm drinks, when they are not given in hot infusion.
PLEURISY-ROOT (Asclepias Tuberosa), is also known as White-root, and Butterfly-weed. It is a valuable remedy, well adapted to break up inflammations and disease of the chest. Dose—Of infusion, one to two ounces; of fluid extract, one-fourth to one-half teaspoonful; of the concentrated principle, Asclepin, one to three grains.
SAFFRON (Crocus Sativus). Golden Saffron. Dose—Of infusion (one drachm to a pint of water), one to two ounces.
Sage (Salvia Officinalis). The warm infusion drunk freely is a valuable, domestic diaphoretic.
VIRGINIA SNAKE-ROOT (Aristolochia Serpentaria), is an efficient agent. Dose—Of infusion, one to two ounces; of tincture, one-fourth to one teaspoonful; of fluid extract, one-fourth to one-half teaspoonful.
JABORANDI (Pilocarpus Pinnatus). Jaborandi increases the flow of saliva, causes profuse perspiration, and lowers the temperature of the body. In doses of from twenty to sixty drops of the fluid extract, administered in a cup of warm water or herb-tea on going to bed, we have found it very effectual for breaking up recent colds. We have also found it valuable in whooping-cough, in doses of from three to ten drops, according to the age of the child, given three or four times a day. The fluid extract may be obtained at almost any drug-store.
MAY-WEED (Maruta Cotula), is also known as Wild Chamomile, and Dog-fennel. It is not much used, though it is a powerful diaphoretic. Dose—Of infusion, one to two ounces.
CATNIP (Nepeta Cataria). A deservedly popular, domestic remedy, always acceptable, and certain in its action. The warm infusion is the best form for its administration. It may be drunk freely.
GINGER (Zingiber Officinale). The hot infusion may be sweetened and drunk as freely as the stomach will bear.
DR. PIERCE'S COMPOUND EXTRACT OF SMART-WEED. This is unsurpassed as a diaphoretic agent, and is much more certain in its operation than any simple diaphoretic.
Any fluid which thins the blood or holds medicine in solution is called a diluent. Pure water is the principal agent of this class. It constitutes about four-fifths of the weight of the blood, and is the most abundant constituent of the bodily tissues. Water is necessary, not only for digestion, nutrition, and all functional processes of life, but it is indispensable as a menstruum for medicinal substances. It is a necessary agent in depuration, or the process of purifying the animal economy, for it dissolves and holds in solution deleterious matter, which in this state may be expelled from the body. In fevers, water is necessary to quench the thirst, promote absorption, and incite the skin and kidneys to action. Its temperature may be varied according to requirements. Diluents are the vehicles for introducing medicine into the system. We shall briefly mention some which prove to be very grateful to the sick.
VARIOUS VEGETABLE ACIDS AND JELLIES may be dissolved in water, as apple, currant, quince, grape, or cranberry.
THE JUICE OF LEMONS, ORANGES, PINE-APPLES, AND TAMARINDS, is also found to be refreshing to fever patients.
SASSAFRAS-PITH, SLIPPERY-ELM BARK, FLAX-SEED, AND GUM ARABIC make good mucilaginous drinks for soothing irritation of the bowels and other parts.
BREWERS' YEAST mixed with water in the proportion of from one-eighth to one-fourth is a stimulant and antiseptic.
THE WHITE ASHES OF HICKORY OR MAPLE WOOD dissolved in water make an excellent alkaline drink in fevers, or whenever the system seems surcharged with acidity.
Diuretics are medicines which, by their action on the kidneys, increase the flow of urine.
MARSH-MALLOW (Althea Officinalis) is used in irritable conditions of the urinary organs. The infusion may be drunk freely.
GRAVEL-PLANT (Epigea Repens), is also known as Water-pink, Trailing-arbutus, or Gravel-root. Dose—Of decoction of the plant, one to three ounces; of fluid extract, one-fourth to one-half teaspoonful.
STONE-ROOT (Collinsonia Canadensis), is also known as Knot-root, Horse-balm, Rich-weed, or Ox-balm. This is a mild diuretic, slow in action, yet effective in allaying irritation of the
FOXGLOVE (Digitalis purpurea) slows the action of the heart, lowers the temperature, and acts indirectly as a diuretic. It is especially valuable in the treatment of scarlet fever and in dropsy. Dose—Of infusion, one-half drachm to one-half ounce; of the fluid extract or strong tincture, from two to ten drops. It should be used with caution. A poultice made of the leaves and placed over the kidneys is an effectual method of employing the drug.
QUEEN OF THE MEADOW (Eupatorium Purpureum), is also known as Gravel-weed, Gravel-root, or Trumpet-weed. This is a most valuable diuretic. Dose—Of the infusion, one to three ounces; of fluid extract, one-fourth to one-half teaspoonful; of the concentrated principle, Eupatorin (Purpu), one-half to two grains.
BUCHU (Barosma Crenata). The leaves are used. This agent has been extensively employed, generally in compounds. Dose—Of infusion, (steeped for two hours or more) one to two ounces; of fluid extract, the same; of the concentrated principle, Barosmin, one to three grains.
PIPSISSEWA (Chimaphila Umbellata), or Prince's Pine. This is a tonic to the kidneys, as well as a diuretic and alterative, and is a mild, but very efficient remedy. Dose—Of decoction, one ounce from four to six times a day; of fluid extract, one-fourth to one-half teaspoonful; of the concentrated principle, Chimaphilin, one to two grains.
WATER-MELON SEEDS (Cucurbita Citrullus). Dose—Of infusion, the patient may drink freely until the desired effect is secured.
PUMPKIN SEEDS (Cucurbita Pepo). They are mild, unirritating, yet effective diuretics. An infusion of these may be drunk freely.
SWEET SPIRIT OF NITRE (Spiritus AEtheris Nitros), is diuretic and anodyne. Dose—One-fourth to one-half teaspoonful, diluted in water, every two or three hours.
SALTPETRE (Potassae Nitras). Dose—Powdered, five to ten grains.
ACETATE OF POTASH (Potassae Acetas). Dose—Ten to fifteen grains, largely diluted in water. It is more frequently used for this purpose than the nitrate. It is a most valuable diuretic.
These are medicines which cause vomiting and evacuation of the stomach. Some of the agents of this class, termed irritant emetics, produce vomiting by a local action on the stomach, and do not affect this organ when introduced elsewhere. Others, which may be termed systemic emetics, produce their effects through the nervous system, and, therefore, must be absorbed into the circulation before they can produce vomiting. In cases of poisoning, it is desirable to empty the stomach as quickly as possible, hence irritant emetics should be employed, for they act more speedily. Draughts of warm water favor the action of emetics.
MUSTARD (Sinapis) acts promptly and efficiently as an emetic, and may be employed in poisoning. Dose—From one to two teaspoonfuls of powdered mustard, stirred up in a glass of tepid water. It should be quickly swallowed and diluents freely administered.
SULPHATE OF COPPER (Cupri Sulphas) is a prompt, irritant emetic. It should be given in doses of ten grains dissolved in half a glass of water, and its action assisted by the free use of diluents.
SULPHATE OF ZINC (Zinci Sulphas) is similar in its effects to sulphate of copper, but less powerful, and may be taken in the same manner, and the dose repeated if necessary in fifteen minutes.
YELLOW SUBSULPHATE OF MERCURY (Hydrargyri Sulphas flava), commonly known as Turpeth Mineral, is an efficient and most desirable emetic in membranous croup. It is an active poison, but, as it is quickly thrown up with the contents of the stomach, there is no danger from its administration. Dose—It should be given to a child in doses of from three to five grains, in the form of powder, rubbed up with sugar of milk.
IPECAC (Cephaelis Ipecacuanha).In large doses Ipecac is a systemic emetic. In small doses, it exerts a specific influence upon the mucous membranes, relieves nausea and irritation, and subdues inflammation. In cholera infantum it is an invaluable remedy, if given in very small doses. By allaying irritation of the stomach and restoring tone and functional activity to it and the bowels, it gradually checks the discharges and brings about a healthy condition. It is also valuable in dysentery, and is borne in large doses. As an emetic the dose is, of powder, five to ten grains in warm water; of fluid extract, ten to twenty drops.
LOBELIA (Lobelia Inflata), sometimes known as Indian Tobacco, or Emetic-weed. The herb and seeds are used. This is a powerful, systemic emetic, but very depressing. Dose—Of the powdered leaves, fifteen to twenty grains; of the infusion, one to three ounces; of the fluid extract, ten to fifteen drops.
BONESET (Eupatorium Perfoliatum). Dose—Of the warm infusion or decoction, two to three ounces; of the fluid extract, one teaspoonful in hot water: of the concentrated principle, Eupatorin, two to five grains.
Emmenagogue is a term applied to a class of medicines which have the power of favoring the discharge of the menses. We shall mention only a few of those which are best adapted to domestic use.
PENNYROYAL (Hedeoma Pulegioides). Pennyroyal, used freely in the form of a warm infusion, promotes perspiration and excites the menstrual discharge when recently checked. A large draught of the infusion should be taken at bed-time. The feet should be bathed in warm water previous to taking the infusion.
BLACK COHOSH (Cimicifuga Racemosa). Black Cohosh, known also as Black Snake-root, is an effective remedy in uterine difficulties. Dose—Of the tincture, twenty drops; of the fluid extract, ten drops.
TANSY (Tanacetum Vulgare). Tansy is beneficial in suppressed menstruation. Dose—Of the infusion, from one to four fluid ounces.
ERGOT (Secede Cornutum) in very small doses acts as an emmenagogue, and in large doses it checks hemorrhage. The dose as an emmenagogue, of the fluid extract, is from two to five drops, and to arrest hemorrhage, from half a drachm to two drachms, repeated in from one to three hours.
LIFE-ROOT (Senecio Gracilis.) Life-root exerts a peculiar influence upon the female reproductive organs, and for this reason has received the name of Female Regulator It is very efficacious in promoting the menstrual flow, and is a valuable agent in the treatment of uterine diseases. Dose—Of the decoction, four fluid ounces three or four times a day; of the fluid extract, from one-fourth to one-half teaspoonful.
MOTHERWORT (Leonurus Cardiaca). Motherwort is usually given in warm infusion, in suppression of the menses from cold. Dose—Of the decoction, from two to three fluid ounces every one or two hours.
DR. PIERCE'S FAVORITE PRESCRIPTION is an efficient remedy in cases requiring a medicine to regulate the menstrual function. Full directions accompany every bottle.
DR. PIERCE'S COMPOUND EXTRACT OF SMART-WEED is an excellent emmenagogue. Dr. Eberle, a very celebrated medical writer, and author of a work on medicine which is very popular with the profession, says that he has used the "Extract of Smart-weed" in twenty cases of amenorrhea (suppressed menstruation), and affirms "with no other remedy or mode of treatment have I been so successful as with this." Full directions accompany every bottle. It is sold by all druggists.
Expectorants are medicines which modify the character of the secretions of the bronchial tubes, and promote their discharge. Most of the agents of this class are depressing in their influence and thus interfere with digestion and healthy nutrition. Their application is very limited, hence we shall dismiss them without further consideration.
Liniments are medicines designed for external application. The benefits arising from their use depend upon their derivative power, as well as upon the anodyne properties which many of them possess, rendering them efficacious for soothing pain. We cannot mention a more valuable agent of this class than
DR. PIERCE'S COMPOUND EXTRACT OF SMART-WEED. As an external application this preparation subdues inflammation and relieves pain. For all wounds, bruises, sprains, bee-stings, insect and snake-bites, frost-bites, chilblains, caked breast, swollen glands, rheumatism, and, in short, for any and all ailments, whether afflicting man or beast, requiring a direct external application, either to allay inflammation or soothe pain, the Extract of Smart-weed cannot be excelled.
A narcotic is a remedy which, in medicinal doses, allays morbid sensibility, relieves pain, and produces sleep; but which, in overdoses, produces coma, convulsions, and death. The quantity necessary to produce these results varies in different individuals. We shall mention a few of those most frequently employed.
HENBANE (Hyoscyamus Niger). The leaves and seeds are used. Henbane, in large doses, is a powerful narcotic and dangerously poisonous. In medicinal doses, it is anodyne and antispasmodic; it allays pain, induces sleep, and arrests spasms. Dose—Of the fluid extract, five to ten drops; of the solid extract, from one-half to one grain; of the concentrated principle, Hyoscyamin, from one-twelfth to one-fourth of a grain.
INDIAN HEMP (Cannabis Indica). An East Indian plant. Dose—Of the extract, from one-fourth to one-half grain, of the tincture, from three to eight drops; of the fluid extract, from two to five drops. The plant known as Indian Hemp, growing in this country, possesses very different qualities.
STRAMONIUM (Datura Stramonium). Stramonium, also known as Thorn-apple, in large doses is a powerful narcotic poison. In medicinal doses it acts as an anodyne and antispasmodic
Dose—Of extract of the leaves, from one-half to one grain; of the fluid extract, from three to six drops.
These are medicines which act on the nervous system, soothing excitement and quieting the condition known as "nervousness."
HOPS (Humulus Lupulus). Dose—Of infusion, one to three ounces; of the fluid extract, one-fourth to one-half teaspoonful of the concentrated principle, Humulin, two to three grains.
SCULL-CAP. (Scutellaria Lateriolia). The herb is used. It is also known as Mad-dog Weed. This is a valuable remedy. Dose—Of infusion, one to two ounces, of the fluid extract, ten to twenty drops; of the concentrated principle, Scutellarin, one to two grains.
LADY'S SLIPPER (Cypripedium Pubescens). The root is used. Dose—Of the infusion, one-half to one-ounce; of THE fluid extract, one-fourth to one-half teaspoonful; of the concentrated principle, Cypripedin, one to two grains.
PULSATILLA (Pulsatilla Nigricans). We employ the German tincture, prepared from the green herb. In many of the distressing nervous complications to which both males and females are subject in certain diseases of the generative organs, we have found it very effectual. The dose is from two to eight drops.
DR. PIERCE'S FAVORITE PRESCRIPTION. This is a tonic nervine of unsurpassed efficacy, combined in such a manner, that, while it quiets nervous irritation, it strengthens the enfeebled nervous system, restoring it to healthful vigor. In all diseases involving the female reproductive organs, with which there is usually associated an irritable condition of the nervous system, it is unsurpassed as a remedy. It is also a uterine and general tonic of great excellence. It is sold by all druggists.
Sedatives are a class of agents which control excitation of the circulation, and diminish irritability of the nervous system.
ACONITE (Aconitum Napellus), The parts used are the root and leaves. Aconite slows the pulse, diminishes arterial tension, and lowers the temperature of the body in fevers. It is an effectual remedy in acute inflammation of the tonsils and throat, in acute bronchitis, in inflammation of the lungs, and pleurisy, in the hot stage of intermittent and remittent fevers, in the eruptive fevers, in fever arising from a cold, and in some forms of neuralgia. Acute suppression of the menses from a cold, may be relieved by the tincture of aconite in drop doses every hour. Dose—Of the tincture of the root, from one-half of a drop to two drops, in a spoonful of water, in acute fevers and inflammations, from one-half drop to one drop should be administered every half hour or hour, according to the severity of the symptoms.
PEACH TREE (Amygdalus Persica). Peach tree leaves and bark are slightly sedative, but the chief use which we have found for these articles is to control nausea and vomiting arising from irritability of the stomach. It also possesses mild, tonic properties. Dose—Of infusion at the bark of the small twigs or of the leaves, from two to six teaspoonfuls.
AMERICAN HELLEBORE (Veratrum Viride) is also known as White Hellebore, Indian Poke, or Swamp Hellebore. The root is the part used. It is a most valuable agent with which to control the frequent, strong, bounding pulse common to many febrile and inflammatory diseases. When the pulse is hard, incompressible, and bounding, this remedy is more effectual than aconite. Dose—Of the tincture and fluid extract, from one to two drops, repeated every half hour to two hours, according to the severity of the symptoms. This remedy should be given in very small doses, frequently repeated, if we would secure its best effects. Our favorite mode of administering both veratrum and aconite is to add ten drops of the tincture to ten or fifteen teaspoonfuls of water, of which one teaspoonful may be administered every hour.
YELLOW JESSAMINE (Gelseminum Sempervirens). The root is the part used. Through its controlling effect over the sympathetic nervous system, this agent exerts a marked influence in controlling morbid excitability of the circulatory organs. It allays irritation, and determination of blood to the brain, indicated by flushed face, contracted pupils, irritability, and restlessness, a frequent condition in diseases incident to childhood. Its concentrated principle, Gelsemin, is an efficient remedy in bloody-flux or dysentery. It should be administered in very small doses to secure the best results. Only one-sixteenth to one-eighth of a grain is required, repeated every two hours. It should be triturated with sugar of milk or with common white sugar, in the proportion of one grain to ten of sugar. Dose—Of tincture, from five to fifteen drops; of fluid extract, three to six drops; of Gelsemin, as a sedative, one-fourth to one-half grain.
Stimulants are medicines which have the power of increasing the vital activity of the body. Some have a very transient action, while others are more permanent in effect.
CAYENNE PEPPER (Capsicum Annuum). Cayenne Pepper is a powerful stimulant. Dose—Of the powder, from one to six grains, administered in milk; of the tincture, from five to ten drops, largely diluted in milk or water.
BLACK PEPPER (Piper Nigrum). Black Pepper is a warm, carminative stimulant. Dose—From five to fifteen grains; of the fluid extract, from ten to fifteen drops.
PRICKLY-ASH (Xanthoxylum Fraxineum). Prickly-ash bark is a stimulant and tonic. The parts used are the bark and leaves. Dose—Of the fluid extract, from five to fifteen drops; of the tincture, ten to twenty drops; of the active principle, Xanthoxylin, one to two grains.
ALCOHOL is a powerful stimulant. It is never used in its pure state in medicine, but when diluted forms a useful remedy in many diseases. It is generally employed in the form of whiskey, gin, rum, brandy, and wine.
AMMONIA is an excellent stimulant. Dose—Of the carbonate, from three to five grains; of the sesquicarbonate, from five to ten grains; this is the same as the carbonate, which has been exposed to the air and slacked (powdered hartshorn); of the aromatic spirit, from one-half to one teaspoonful. The Aqua Ammonia and Liquor Ammonia are of such variable strength that they are seldom employed internally, but may be applied externally and taken by inhalation.