Drosera rotundifolia. Round-leaved sundew. N.O. Droseraceae. Tincture of the fresh plant.
IN experiments on cats, which were chosen as being little susceptible to tubercle, drosera caused diarrhoea at once, and very marked weakening of the voice after six weeks` administration of the drug. At the autopsies tubercles were found beneath the pleurae, the submaxillary glands were enlarged, there was hypertrophy of Peyer`s and the solitary glands, as also of the mesenteric glands. The acini of the spleen were enlarged and contained masses of corpuscles.
Respiratory System.-The provings show that the chief action of the drug is on the respiratory organs. The voice is hoarse and very low (carbo veg., caust., phos.). There is a bruised feeling in the larynx when inspiring, it feels constricted when talking, and a tickling sensation, as of a leather in it, provokes cough, or an accumulation of mucus may be the exciting cause. The cough is deep-sounding, hoarse and spasmodic. It is violent and occurs in successive spasms which continue till the patient retches or vomits. The vomiting is of mucus, food, bile or blood. The paroxysms of cough follow each other so rapidly and violently that they almost cause asphyxia and may terminate in a convulsion. Cold sweat breaks out on the forehead and extremities while the face becomes puffed and livid. Haemorrhage may take place from the lungs, trachea, mouth, nose, ears or stomach. The patient is left utterly prostrate by the attack and breaks out all over in a copious sweat,
The chest is constricted and oppressed, there is a similar state of the abdominal muscles and a feeling in the chest on coughing as if the air could no be properly expelled. The patient wants to hold the chest and abdomen still with his hands so that he may relieve the stitching pains and the violent shaking of the cough. Talking, and eating and drinking cold things promote the cough, which is worse from warmth and on lying down (hyoscy., brom.) at night and after midnight, and often wakes the patient at 2a.m.
There is a certain amount of fever with it, but he feels cold over most of the body, while the head and face are hot. Expectoration is yellow, bitter or offensive, bloody or pus-like. There is a rough, dry scraping sensation in the throat which helps to excite the cough.
Digestion.-Swallowing of food is difficult, especially of solids. Hiccough is frequent. There is a contractive feeling in the pit of the stomach, as though everything were being drawn inwards.
Mind.-The patient is restless and anxious, imagines he is persecuted, and is suspicious of his friends; he is confused and dizzy; he fears being alone, fears ghosts and dreads the night.
Head.-Pressive or lancinating pains, that are worse from moving the eyes and better from supporting the head on the hands, are felt in the forehead.
The limbs feel sore, gnawing and stitching pains occur in the bones, especially about the joints, in which severe stitches are felt; they are less painful during motion than when at rest. Cramping and constricting pains may occur in all parts, and spasms may be set up in the extremities while coughing.
Skin.-An eruption like measles is sometimes seen. Itching occurs, which is generally relieved by scratching or rubbing with the hand.
Respiratory Diseases.-The chief therapeutic sphere of drosera is in spasmodic and convulsive coughs. It is principally used in whooping cough, especially when the paroxysms are severe and accompanied by vomiting and by outbursts of bleeding from nose, lungs or throat, or when they terminate in a convulsion. But other spasmodic coughs are equally amenable to it, such as that which sometimes follows measles and the laryngeal cough of phthisis. Drosera is a remedy for phthisis, to which it has a close similarity, as it has produced (in cats) tubercles in the pleurae and enlargement of many of the glands. It has been given with excellent results in tuberculous joints.
Drosera has been given in sciatica when the pain is worse from pressure, lying on the affected part and from stooping; it is better after rising from bed.
(1) Violent spasmodic coughs.
(2) The same, attended with haemorrhages, vomiting or convulsions.
(3) Whooping-cough. Laryngeal and pulmonary phthisis. Tuberculous bones and joints.
From cold food and drink (cough), acids, evening and after midnight, stooping, singing,talking, motion of eyes (head pains), warmth, pressure (sciatica).
From supporting the parts (during cough), walking, motion (stitches in chest and joints, shivering), warm drinks, after rising from bed (sciatica).