Murex purpurea. N.O. Muricidae. The juice of the “purple fish.”.
THIS gastropod was probably one of the sources of the renowned Tyrian purple dye. Murex as tested up to the present seems mainly to affect the reproductive organs in women and the adjacent viscera, causing sympathetic mental and temperamental states.
PATHOGENESIS AND THERAPEUTICS
The predominant condition for which murex is used is one where “bearing down,” forcing outward or feeling of prolapse (subjective or objective) of the pelvic organs is experienced. The pressure is of an active nature like that caused by lilium and belladonna; menstruation is likely to be profuse, protracted and with large clots. There is local (vulval) hypersensitiveness, a slight touch causes intense sexual excitement and vaginismus, with spasm of crural and adjacent muscles, entirely preventing sexual intercourse; as in sepia cases, the feeling that the pelvic contents will fall out (or rather be forced out) at the vaginal orifice is present in murex cases, and necessitates the support either of a bandage or by crossing of legs to prevent protrusion. Unlike sepia cases, the relief on lying down is not marked, indeed when lying down the “bearing down” feeling may seem worse and caused more pain in the sacrum. (In sepia cases sexual desire and response are lessened.)
Depressions of spirits is a characteristic effect of both remedies. Sympathetic pain in the breast and shooting towards them from the sides of the pelvis is present and is most characteristic if diagonal. Rectal symptoms may be associated, pressure in the rectum, fulness, protrusion of piles or rectal tenesmus.
Leucorrhoea, intermittent, blood-stained, hot and irritating is noteworthy, and when it is free the patient`s mental depression is lessened. Leucorrhoea becoming bloodstained during straining at stool appears to be a clinical symptom during straining at stool appears to be a clinical symptom and should be used with caution, as possibly indicating epithelioma cervicis. These various ailments may follow abortion or parturition and may amount almost to nymphomania in associated with puerperal mania.
The excessive sexual excitement appears to be due to a local neurosis, for the mind resents the desires as abhorrent and loathsome. In melancholia, in “anxiety neuroses” and obsessional states,” sexual or associated with sexual irritation, murex should be considered.
Palpitation and local throbbings are present as part of the sexual erethism.
Ovaritis may be present, and if limited to the right side would confirm the selection of murex. The remedy is not much used because the conditions in their extreme forms are not common, and because in milder cases it is not always easy to elicit the temperamental symptoms indicating the remedy. The pudendal hyperaesthesia may reveal itself during a gynaecological examination and give a clue to the drug. Some symptoms emanating from the epigastric region (or solar plexus?) are prominent-an empty, sinking feeling there and a hungry craving even just after meal.
Headache.-Headache in the morning on waking, going away after moving about, frontal headache worse on the right side (temple) and cramp-like pain in the upper part of the neck and occiput are caused and cured by murex.
Some symptoms (ex. gr. polyuria) are worse at night and after sleep. Lying down tends to make most of the symptoms worse , an important and somewhat surprising fact.
Many of the pains of murex are crossed or diagonal, ex. gr., pain from the right hypochondrium to the left breast, and some of them are worse when the patient is seated and relieved by walking about.
Urinary Symptoms.-Frequent micturition and polyuria, day and night, and foetid urine, smelling like valerian, and discharge of mucus or blood, should direct attention to murex. The urgent desire to pass water may wake the patient in a fright.
Backache-loins and hips-is felt on stretching the limbs and body in bed.
(1) Greatly increased sexual desire, amounting almost to nymphomania. It may be spontaneous or excited by the slightest vulval contact. It may be repulsive and distressing to the sufferer.
(2) Active feeling of “bearing down” or prolapsus not relieved by lying down.
(3) The sexual and pelvic symptoms are most frequent after parturition and at the menopause.
(4) Menorrhagia, with large clots.
(5) Depression of spirits, with apprehensiveness and confusion of ideas, worse in the evening; aversion to talking and inability to express oneself.
(6) Crossed or diagonal pains.
(7) Empty, sinking feeling at the epigastrium, hunger soon after a meal, excessive hunger.
(8) More right-sided symptoms than left (right cheek, in evening), hypochondrium, abdomen.
From exertion, at night, after sleep, lying down (general), slight touch.
Putting head back, when discharges are worse: pressure, crossing legs (prolapsus uteri), walking (general).