By Dr. Lobethal, of Breslau
When combined with oxygen, Phosphorus has quite a different tendency in variours infirmities of the human body. While real debility, lack of tone owing to violently active influences are the indications for Phosphorus. All the ailments in which Phosphoric acid proves suitable point more to a suppression of forces. The supply of organic forces must be larger for a successful use of Phosphoric acid than for the use of the pure Phosphorus. In my hands it has especially proved its excellence in the following disorders. As the mildest mediator of the disturbed chief factors of our body, of the increased nervous excitation at the cost of a suppressed and weakened irritability. Acid. Phosphoricum is generally an unexcelled remedy in the consequences of long-continued night watches, long-continued disquiet of the affections, caused by nursing the sick, whereby soul and body have been both affected, and in its injurious effects on the body; thus also in the anguish of heart owing to the loss or the great danger threatening the object of our heart’s affection. This causal tendency of the remedy is as clearly expressed in Phosphoric acid as are those of Arnica, Rhus, Ignatia, Aconite and Staphisagria with respect to the special causes which lie at the foundation of their curative power. The indications for the use of Phosphoric acid are, therefore, never limited with me to cases which exactly agree in their symptoms, but the knowledge of the preceding pathogenetic moments are the criterion for its use; therefore the use of this remedy is in my practice quite a frequent one, for out of this fountain of many disorders, as frequent as it is sad, there arise a general excitement, continuous sleeplessness, or, on the other hand, a continual drowsiness, from too great a relaxation, from a general feeling of being our of tune with the surroundings; from this there result very often nervous fevers, as versatllis of the twenty-one days’ type, and perhaps most frequently an inclination to diarrhoea. In these nervous fevers we can seldom do without Acid. Phosphor., but it can only be given when we find dazedness of the head and vivid redness of the face, with great lassitude of the body without any vivid delirium, thus more in the transition to the stupor. Here frequently nothing but a bold use of Phosphoric acid will be of any use, as the higher dilutions pass without any effect, and I have found it best to give single drops of the pure acid at intervals of several hours until there is a perceptible amelioration. Of course, chronic congestion to the head, caused by the above mentioned momenta, frequently find the most successful help in our remedy, although it should be used in such cases in the same strength indeed, but still at intervals of several days. Here it is also where Acid.phosphor. Can do much to cure baldness, i.e., if the pains in the head have originated from anguish and grief, and the hair has in great part fallen out on this account. Also in gastric nervous fevers with a tendency to watery stools like diarrhoea, the tongue covered, diarrhoeas which have either arisen from the long-continued influences of grief, Sorrow and distressing emotions, or more especially in times of prevailing epidemics, especially of cholera, when, through the terror reigning among may, these diarrhoeas become almost as epidemic as cholera itself. This state, called cholerine, which, when caused by the fear of cholera, is certainly cured by phosphoric acid, is characterized by restlessness in the abdomen, continual rumbling therein, hot hands, perspiration of the whole body, caused by anguish, attended with the more or less frequent passage of a thin stool, not colorless, but without pain, and by a strong thirst. I have treated very many such cases during the last epidemic of cholera, and by the almost exclusive use of Acid. Phosphor. I have removed this state, which so easily passes over into cholera. The higher potencies I found also in these cases without any effect, and only drop doses of the third dilution or better yet, single drops or the pure acid in several ounces of water; this repeated every half hour or every hour, or at longer intervals, seemed to me the best dose.
Against to frequent and to debilitating pollutions, especially with young people who formerly practiced onanism, the use of Phosphoric acid for a longer period is the most efficient. Here often the sixth or ninth dilution in pellets will suffice, if the patient can make up his mind to a diet free from all irritation.
I have also often found Phosphoric acid efficient in relieving the pains from swollen haemorrhoidal veins, and against the bloody flux from such haemorrhoids. The most unbearable pains on sitting down are usually quickly alleviated by the use of diluted Phosphoric acid (3), and by a longer use they are also totally removed. For the cure of diabetes mellitus, our remedy, as is well-known, has the recommendation of Aegidi. In treating a case of diabetes in a lady a year ago it seemed to me as if a pause in the disease had been caused, as shown by a diminution of the sugar in the urine and a decrease of the thirst. But a change followed and the patient had as little patience to wait for the effect of my treatment as she had shown with the four or five physicians who preceded me. It may be that Argentum, to which attention was called by Kurz in No.1, Vol. Vii, of “Hygea,” might be more efficient in this disorder.
In the Paedarthrocace, which is not rare even with children more difficulties in its cure, a steady use of Phosphoric acid is a very great help, though it may take quite a long time before the morbid process can be removed from the bones. In necrosis Phosphoric acid is at least as precious a remedy as Angustura and all other medicaments which are famed in its cure.
Aconite, when rightly used, replaces to the Homoeopathic physician a great, if not the greater part of the antiphlogistic medical apparatus of the old school. It is undeniably the one remedy which is able to directly calm the storm of the inflammably excited blood, and the Homoeopath can as little do without it as the Allopath could promise to heal acute diseases without blood letting. The great efficacy of Aconite in synochal fevers, and phlegmonous inflammations has, we are sorry to say, led to thee mere routine practice of giving Aconite wherever the old school used their antiphlogistic apparatus; by this has been caused the miscarriage of many a cure.
Aconite is in general the most important, the surest and often the only remedy in all inflammatory fevers, of course supposing that these are without gastric, nervous and such like complications, and also in the pure inflammation of the lungs, as also in inflammatory pleurisy. In the inflammation of other organs Aconite is only an auxiliary remedy to moderate the orgasm of the blood; but as such it is indispensable, because it prepares the way for the operation of other remedies by putting an end to the inflammatory tension. Among these are dental fevers and congestions to the head and to the gums with children, inflammation of the brain, inflammation of the eyes, of the bronchial tubes, and of the fauces; croup, more rarely inflammation of the bowels, and most of all metritis with young persons. In spitting of blood, and still more for the prevention of recurrences of the same with persons who are inclined to it, which is generally caused by a tendency to inflammation of the lungs, Aconite is a very important remedy.
Aconite may further be used in the eruptive stage of smallpox, and in the angina preceding scarlatina it cannot be dispensed with as an aid. In measles it is the chief and the specific remedy, even if it is not so to the same extent as Belladonna is in scarlatina; it is also the most efficient remedy in rubeola.
But besides these acute diseases Aconite shows itself in acute rhenmatism with inflammation of the srous membranes, and still more in acute gout, in pulsating tootache, caused by a distinct rush of blood to the head; also in congetions of blood to the head, when these take place without being caused by sedentary occupations or stagnation in the abdomen in the case of young persons, especially with lively girls, with whom the constant rush of blood causes severe pains in the face and great irritability; so also in menstrua minia combined with a general plethora, Aconite is the most important and the most valuable remedy.
The dose in Aconite, according to my individual custom in acute diseases and when the cases are very pressing, consists of a few drops of the mother tincture given in solution in very frequent repetition, and only in lighter cases or in chronic diseases in the 12th, 18th or 30th dilution; its duration of action is seldom long continued, wherefore frequent repetition is necessary.
I can give an interesting contribution to the knowledge of the action of this remedy from my own experience. It is of the greater importance because I had the good fortune in this case to find without any long groping the one spccific remedy, and it concerns a disease as to which we have not yet very many facts to prove the efficacy of Homoeopathy; namely, the diseases of the mind.
A widow aged 64, who was talkative but showed otherwise no especial mental weakness, after a severe undeserved mortification inflicted on her by a neighbor, a kind of alienation of mind had supervened; her state was not dangerous to those around her, but consisted in a continuous babbling of irrational, silly phrases, and according to my opinion this had only passed over into violent madness through the ill-advised coercive measures of the allopathic family physician. This state had continued for several weeks despite of Calomel Unguent, Tartari stibiat. And other remedies, when my assistance was requested. The violent paroxysms of the patient at night I soon removed by a less severe treatment, the silliness which still remained I completely removed in a fortnight by frequent doses of Anacardium X, so that this lady is again to this day in the complete possession of her mental powers.