GLANDULAR SWELLING.- The lymphatic system of glands and canals constitutes one of the most important parts of the animal organism. They are important for the function they discharge in eliminating and transmuting the waste elements of the tissues, and observance of the condition of the glands is of very great value to the physician in diagnosing states of health and as an indication of treatment. The glands which come most prominently into notice are those situated in the neck, the arm-pits, and in the groins. Among the glands of this system are the thyroid gland, which has a special place and function of its own. Enlargement of this gland constitutes the disease known as GOITRE, which will be dealt with under that head. Disease of the glands of the intestines, known as “mesenteric glands,” since they are found in the mesenteric membrane which keeps the intestines in their place, constitutes a very serious disease, which is generally of a tubercular nature. Glands may become affected from accidental or constitutional causes; and persons who are constitutionally susceptible to gland affections (those, for example who suffer from scrofula) are more liable to be influenced by the accidental causes than others. For instance, scarlatina very frequently causes inflammation of the glands of the neck: in a non-scrofulous child the inflammation is more likely to subside without going on to subside without going on to abscess than in one who is scrofulous.
The swelling occurring in glands may be either acute or chronic. If it is acute it will probably go on to form an abscess (see under ABSCESS); if it is chronic it may remain hard and large for a long time and run into a chronic abscess or ulceration.
General Treatment.-For acute inflammation see under ABSCESS. When the swelling is chronic maintain the general health. Give cod-liver oil, and if not taken well internally, rub it in externally; in any case it is well to rub it into the parts where the swollen glands are. Rubbing the body with cod-liver oil is especially valuable in the case of ill-nourished infants.
Medicines.-(Three times a day.)
-At the commencement, redness, swelling, and pain.
Baryta carb. 6.
-After Belladonna In scrofulous cases; hardness and swelling.
-Suppuration impending; glands in the armpits affected.
Calcarea c. 6.
– In scrofulous cases; fat, pale, fair children, with hot and perspiring heads, and cold, clammy feet.
-When in connection with eruptions; patients worse at night in bed; sanguine temperament.
-In thin, weakly subjects; anxiety, restlessness, and thirst.