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[A report read before Cayuga. County Medical Society. N. Y., June 23d, 1864.]

BY C. E. SWIFT, M. D., Auburn, N. Y

In reporting on diseases of children I present a few cases that I have treated, and which I deem of sufficient interest to present to the society.

Diphtheria which has caused so much anxiety and careful watchfulness among both parents and physicians, and which has proved so fatal in some parts of our State should be noticed. I need not take up time with a history or description of this disease, for we all understand what the disease is; although I fear that we do not all know how to cure it in all its forms. My object, at this time, is to make a statement of a few cases which have come under my care, and in which I have found the action of the medicine so prompt in each case, that I feel it a duty I owe to the profession to report them to this society. I would first call your attention to the successful treatment of diphtheria with Muriatic acid.

I was called, on Wednesday, September 16th, 1863, to see a child aged eight years, who was taken the day before with diphtheria. The symptoms were as follows; pulse accelerated; slight fever; both tonsils and uvula red, congested and swollen with patches of false membrane on both tonsils, of a cheese-like appearance; general prostration; tongue coated yellowish white; no appetite; slight thirst. I gave Belladonna [A report read Cayuga County Medical Society, N.Y., June 23d, 1864] and Mercurius protiod. [A report read Cayuga County Medical Society, N.Y., June 23d, 1864]“, in alternation every two hours. Next day (17th), no change, treatment continued.

18th. Patient seemed somewhat better.

19th. Found the child worse and the disease tending toward the putrid type. Trembling of the hands; nose bleed, blood dark and putrid; great prostration; restless, with slight delirium; very little rash and the peculiar putrid smell which always attends this disease in its worst form. I prescribed Muriatic acid, in solution, five drops to a quarter of a tumbler of water, a teaspoonful every hour.

20th. Patient improved, treatment continued, dose every two hours. .

21st. Still improving, medicine continued.

22d. Improving finely, dose every three hours and I gave no other medicine but the acid, until the patient was dismissed. I never saw a more marked and prompt action of a remedy in this disease than was obtained from Muriatic acid in this case, and I have no doubt that it saved the life of the child.

February 1st, 1864, I was sent for to visit two patients in the same family, the father aged 45 years and the son 12 years of age. About a week previous a little daughter had been taken with diphtheria, was treated by an allopathic physician and had died that morning. She was then lying in the house. The father and son had been sick some two or three days. The father I found in the following condition: Slight fever; pulse slow and weak; little thirst; tongue coated, thick yellowish white; uvula and tonsils swollen, red and covered with a thick whitish false membrane; putrid smelling breath, with sordes on the teeth; a complete sore or scabby condition of the lips, enclosing the mouth; more or less rash on the body and limbs; nose bleed every few hours; blood dark and fetid. I gave Muriatic acid, in solution, a dose every- hour. Next day (April 2d), symptoms about the same, continued same treatment.

April 3d. Decided improvement, medicine continued, a dose every three hours.

4th. Doing well, same treatment.

5th. Improving fast; a dose every few hours, medicine the same.

6th. Patient convalescent and discharged next day cured.

The boy's symptoms were as follows; considerable fever; red and swelled uvula and tonsils, with slight membranous deposit; pulse weak and rather quick; bloated face; pain in the lower limbs; feet swelled and painful; no rash. Prescribed Belladonna and Mercurills protiod, in alternation, every two hours.

April 2d. Less pain in the limbs and feet, but restless; throat somewhat better; less redness; some appearance of rash. Gave Mercurius protiod. and Rhus tox., in alternation, every two hours.

3d. Found the patient as follows: breath putrid; nose Bleed; blood dark and fetid; dark crust upon the lips, and a light scarlet rash upon the whole person; great prostration and slight thirst. I prescribed Muriatic acid, in solution, a dose every hour.

4th. Patient much better, treatment continued.

5th. Boy doing well, medicine the same, dose every three hours.

6th. About well, same treatment, discharged on the seventh cured.

I have no doubt from the success that I have had with Muriatic acid in diphtheria, that it is one of the best remedies we have in the treatment of this disease, when its tendency is to run into the putrid form, and I feel safe in recommending it to the members of this society who have not already tried it.

Congestion of the Brain. - In the summer of 1860 I was called to see a child, aged about fifteen months, which had been treated by two allopathic physicians for acute inflammation of the brain. The child had been under their care for some ten days and they had given it up to die, and told the parents there was no help for it. I found the child lying upon its back, boring with the head into the pillow; the pupils dilated and insensible to the sight; head hot; much thirst; clawing of the head with the right hand and knitting of the brows, had laid in this condition for several days. I prescribed for the child with great reluctance, and told the parents that I did not think I could save it but would try. Gave Belladonna” and Helleborus30, in alternation, ever three hours. Next day no change, continued same treatment, in forty-eight hours found a slight improvement; the third day, decided change for the better, child could see and all its symptoms better. Continued the Bell. and Hell., at lengthened intervals, until the child was dismissed cured.

Hydrothorax. - Three years ago I was sent for to visit a boy, about 12 years of age, and found him with the following symptoms: he was troubled with a dry cough; the lips bluish and bloated; could not lie down; difficulty of breathing, with effusion of water in the chest. I gave Arsenic, Helleborus and Digitalis without any marked effect. Then I prescribed Apis mel., in two drop doses, every two hours. In twenty-four hours some little improvement, in forty-eight decidedly better. Same medicine continued, and a dose every four hours, and in the course of two weeks I dismissed the patient cured.

Post Scarlatina Dropsy. - About the 10th of March, 1864, I treated a child, aged three years, for scarlet fever, and dismissed it the latter part of March. On the first of April was called again to see the same child, and found him with anasarca. I learned upon enquiry that, during the afternoon before, the child had been suffered to lie upon the floor with the door and window open, and, draft of air blowing upon him, he had taken cold. His condition was as follows: pulse quick and feeble: urine scanty; inability to lie down; dyspnea; abdomen distended; great prostration and general dropsy. Gave Ars. alb. and Helleborus, for twenty-four hours, without relief. Then prescribed Apis mel, in solution, every hour. Patient relieved after the second dose, which improvement continued under the use of Apis mel, at lengthened periods, until the child was cured.


Source: The American Homoeopathic Review Vol. 05 No. 03, 1864, pages 119-122
Description: Diseases of Children
Author: Swift, C.E.
Year: 1864
Editing: errors only; interlinks; formatting
Attribution: Legatum Homeopathicum
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