In 1857, Hering published in Leipsic and Heidelberg the first volume of his Americanische Arzneipruefungen, the third article of which presents, in the proving of Apis Mellifica, a model for all provers who shall hereafter attempt to gather and preserve the known effects of drugs on the living human organism. For thoroughness of treatment, and comprehensive appreciation of the problem of drug-proving, as well as for a happy solution of this problem, we do not know where in the labors of others to look for its parallel; and in no instance, in these respects, has this great master of provers excelled it. The proving of Apis also stands as a monument to the industry, faithfulness and learning of the master, which not even his great proving of Lachesis surpasses. It early attracted the attention of practitioners of our school in Germany, and its importance was fully perceived and acknowledged. The remedy was extensively used by them, and great successes were declared to have been the result.
This was especially true of Dr. C. W. Wolf, of Berlin, who in the first part of his Erfahrungen published his numerous extraordinary experiences of Apis, in 1859. His claims for curative relationships of the remedy, based on these experiences, were of so great extent, that to some, who had had less opportunity for observation, they seemed quite extravagant and unworthy of credit.
Unfortunately for the English-reading portion of the practitioners of our school, both the original proving and the Erfahrungen were in the German language, and to them, for this reason, wholly unavailable; and to the present time this embarrassment continues. Notwithstanding this, some of the general facts of the proving have become known, and clinical reports of successes with the remedy have induced its occasional empirical use, and not always without success. In compliance with a request of an esteemed friend, of this class of our school, who has realized many interesting results from the use of Apis, though given empirically, the following translation of the condensed resume of its pathogenesis by Hering, has been made. It is published, not as a substitute for the complete register of its symptoms, but in the hope that it may serve as a help to those who are unable to avail themselves of the original, till such time (it is to be hoped not distant), as the complete proving shall be given to the English reader. (See Appendix.)
The following recent clinical experience with Apis seemed of sufficient interest to warrant giving it to the readers of the Review. On the 25th of March, ult., the writer was called to a child nine years old, just attacked with the miliary form of scarlet fever, with prominent affection of the brain. On the 8th of April, the convalescence seemed established. The child was up, dressed, and engaged with her amusements as usual, there being only a diminished strength to be restored. On the 12th, there was paleness of the face and a very suspicious puffiness of the eyelids, which increased, with swelling of the face, limbs and abdomen. The external swelling was edematous, while the evidence of water in the abdomen was quite complete. The urine was scanty, very dark colored and frothy. There was less than a pint passed in the twenty-four hours. The pulse was but slightly affected, and the skin moderately harsh and dry. The child had an unquestioned syphilitic taint; both parents were known to have suffered from this plague previous to her birth. For a year before this attack of scarlet fever, she had been under allopathic treatment for a disease of the nose. It was swollen; sensitive to touch; respiration through it obstructed; copious, offensive, acrid and thin greyish discharge; ulcers were to be seen within the nostrils. Soon after the commencement of the treatment of the fever these symptoms were much abated.
The dropsical swellings were successfully treated by Apis200. In the progress of the case, and when the abdominal and cutaneous deposits of serum had almost disappeared, she succeeded with some little difficulty in discharging from the left nostril a fleshy mass, more than an inch in length and half an inch in breath. It presented the characteristics of color, consistency and signs or organizations peculiar to nasal polypus. A week after the discharge of this mass, another and smaller was dislodged in the usual, somewhat violent efforts to clear the nose in the morning.
It has not fallen within the experience or reading of the writer to note that nasal polypus has been spontaneously separated and discharged. Has it been in the experience of others? Was this the result of the action of Apis? The case is given as an occasion for asking these two questions.
Under the observation of the friend at whose instance the above translation has been made, erysipelatous inflammation and swelling of the scrotum followed bee-stings on the face and neck, in the case of a lad five years old. This symptom does not appear in Hering's proving.
|The American Homoeopathic Review Vol. 06 No. 01, 1865, pages 13-15
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