Generalities: You will be surprised, when studying full provings of this substance, to notice that all the symptoms seem to centre about the stomach; it does not matter much what kind of complaints he suffers from the stomach takes part in it.
The pains disturb his stomach and bring, on nausea; with his headache he is sick at the stomach; with all complaints his stomach is out of order, and, on the other band, whenever he disorders his stomach he is sick all over. Complaints that manifest themselves through the stomach very frequently need this medicine.
First in importance are the mental symptoms showing the type of constitution likely to need this remedy. It produces a very serious state in the mind, an absence of the desire to live. It is well known to physicians that the case is a serious one if the patient has no desire to live; life is a burden. When I hear a patient say:
“Oh, doctor, if I could only die.”
I do not like such a case; there is some deep-seated trouble in the economy that is hard to remove. Something is threatening, and when it comes it is a common thing to see the patient actually die.
“Loathing of life.”
You will find this especially in a low, lingering, continued fever, such as typhoid. This remedy has all the prostration of typhoid, and it has the continued type of fever as well as the intermittent and remittent. The prostration is similar to Arsenicum, but Ars. have overwhelming fear of death, while this medicine has loathing of life; and so they both part company. Ars, has overwhelming restlessness, this remedy is seldom restless. Ars. has an intense thirst, this medicine is thirstless.
So even though both these remedies have excessive exhaustion with continued fever, we see they have features dissimilar enough to make them wholly distinct. Such a typhoid will sometimes be seen in young girls about puberty who are threatening to go into chlorosis. They have loathing of life, but it is a hysterical loathing of life.
Moments of great exhaustion, sudden attacks of weakness and fainting. You will commonly find another feature with this, not coming at the same moment. but alternating with it, or only present at times, namely, these over excitable, intense, nervous, hysterical, ecstatic young girls and women are overcome by mellow lights such as flow through stained glass windows or the mellow light from the moon in the evening.
That is, what is meant when it says in the text:
“Sentimental mood in the moonlight.”
It is a hysterical state, a disorderly outburst of the affections, such affections as can be aroused only in one who is sick, or one who is unbalanced in the general nervous system.
This kind of patient gives us the mental state and constitution of Ant. crud., and along with such mental states the physical conditions seems to strike to the stomach, as it were.
We have running through this remedy a general state that you should keep in mind, that is, a gouty or rheumatic state, in which the symptoms change with the changes of the weather; worse in cold, damp weather, worse from cold bathing, better from the heat of a hot bath, worse from taking sour wine, and worse from stimulants of any kind.
When you use the expression “worse from wine,” it is not only important to know that the patient is worse from wine, but also the character of complaints that are worse from wine.
This patient becomes easily intoxicated, but the physical symptoms are more disturbed than the mental; his gouty symptoms are worse from sour wine; all the pains and aches of the body are worse from sour wine; headaches come from this cause and the gastric disturbances are greatly aggravated from sour wine.
This patient is worse at night, worse in damp weather, worse from damp cold, better from lying down quietly, better from applied heat, but much worse from over-heating and from radiated heat, and in a warm room.
Many of the symptoms come on in the sun’s rays and from the heat of an open grate. The open fire is wholly against the Ant. crud. patient.
A child with whooping cough will cough more after looking into the fire. Such things are queer; they are so strange that there is no philosophical hypothesis to explain them, no theory that looks toward an explanation, but they are facts which we must accept.
Gout: The whole gouty nature of the case seems to change so suddenly that you wonder where the more exterior symptoms have gone to, for all at once in a night or a day the patient commences to vomit and you have persistent vomiting, lasting days and weeks, until the gouty symptoms come back into the extremities.
It is wonderful how quickly this old-fashioned metastasis will come on, this changing from one place to another. The gout suddenly ceases in the extremities and stomach symptoms come on, and you may call it gout in the stomach if you will.
Catarrhal symptoms: There are catarrhal symptoms in this remedy; catarrh of the nose, stomach, rectum, etc., and an increased flow of mucus from any of these localities from drinking sour wine and from taking cold.
A distressing feature of the catarrh is the stuffing up of the nose at night. As soon as he gets into an overheated room, his nose gets stuffed lip.
The coryza has a tendency to become chronic, because of the low and feeble circulation and the poor constitution.
When it becomes chronic it is worse at night and is associated-with headaches. As the catarrh slackens up and becomes dry the headache becomes worse; he has neuralgia in the head, crushing pains and dreadful sickness at the stomach with vomiting.
He often has an attack of sick headache and it will be called by the family a gastric sick headache, but the condition just mentioned comes on from taking cold, which slacks up the thick discharge into a dryness of the nose and the inhaled air burns the nose like fire.
Sometimes these troubles pass off after an intense vomiting spell; sometimes they do not, but the headache may remain for days not relieved by vomiting, or relieved only after prolonged vomiting.
Headache: There are remedies full of headache and as soon as ho vomits he feels better, but in this remedy he vomits long, and becomes relaxed and exhausted.
The headache is worse moving about, worse at night better from lying down, from keeping quiet, better in the open air, worse in warm room, worse from overheating, worse from radiated heat and light. You see now how the catarrh, the headache and gastric symptoms all belong together.
It is because the patient is sick that you cannot take symptoms separately, you must prescribe for the whole man.
There is another feature belonging to the mucous membranes, and an important one; these membranes have a tendency to throw out a milky white exudation or deposit, and it is especially noticed upon the tongue.
Mucous membranes: The whole tongue is covered with a milk-white coating. This you find in all diseases where the remedy is indicated.
In the stomach disorders of children, in gastric fevers, in complaints with fever and much vomiting great irritation of the whole nervous system and in irritation of the stomach in typhoids, the tongue looks white. Upon the slightest provocation he will retch and gag.
Every thing seems to disturb him. He has loathing of food; the thought and smell of food disturb him. This is like Arsenicum.
Voice and larynx: He takes a cold bath at night on going to bed and gets up in the morning voiceless cannot speak a word.
This has come on in an apparently painless manner; he does not know that it is present until he attempts to speak in the morning. This may be present with spasms, of the larynx clutchings of the throat. Colds sometimes go down into the throat and into the trachea, producing a bronchitis or pneumonia.
Cough: Dry, hacking spasmodic cough in diminishing paroxysms.
I will explain that: The first paroxysm occurs with great violence, racking his whole frame, and lasting a longer or shorter period, to be followed by one with less violence and another with less violence; perhaps after a dozen or less paroxysms of diminishing violence, he ends up with a dry, hacking cough which is not a paroxysm.
When this first cough shakes the whole body, whether it is a bronchitis or whooping cough, and the tongue is white, and there are more or less gastric disturbances, Ant. crud. is the remedy.
It will change the whole aspect of the case at once. The chest remains sore, lame and bruised from the violence of the cough.
Stomach: The stomach symptoms must be particularly considered.
Constant nausea, lump in the stomach, feeling all the time as if he had an overloaded stomach, as if he had eaten too much, and that is when he had not eaten at all.