Last modified on January 10th, 2019

A.C. Cowperthwaite

Symptoms of the homeopathic medicine PICRICUM ACIDUM from A Text Book of Materia Medica and Therapeutics by A.C. Cowperthwaite. Find all the symptoms of PICRICUM ACIDUM

      Synonym. Carbazotic Acid. Common name. Picric Acid. Preparation. One part of pure Picric Acid is dissolved in ninety-nine parts of distilled water to make the 2x dilution. The 3x dilution is made with dilute alcohol, and subsequent dilutions with alcohol.


In poisonous doses Picric Acid acts profoundly upon the blood, causing disintegration of the blood corpuscles, and softening an degeneration of the cortex cerebri cerebellum, medulla oblongata and spinal cord, and consequent paralysis. It also causes inflammation of the kidneys, the urine being loaded with phosphates, urates and uric acid. Albumen and sugar are also found in the urine. In smaller doses there is at fist slight congestion followed by weariness, which may vary from a slight feeling of fatigue to actual paralysis. Associated with this is a mental inactivity, lack of will power, indifference to everything, and a desire to lie down and rest, thus simulating brain fat and neurasthenia, in which conditions is found its chief sphere of usefulness.


Mind. Great indifference; lack of will power to undertake anything (Phosphorus). Disinclination for mental or physical work. Aversion to talking or movement, with the headache. Mental prostration after reading a little; after writing a little. Inability to collect thoughts or to study.

Head. Vertigo and nausea. Vertigo on stooping (Aconite, Belladonna, Pulsatilla, Sulphur); bending the head; lying down; rising from a seat (Bryonia, Sulph). Heat in head; in forehead. Burning along coronal suture. Headache worse on rising, better from pressure, from bandaging the head (Argentum nit., Silicea). Heavy, blind, dizzy aching in vertex, worse from stooping. Pressure outward, as if the head would fly apart, worse from motion or study. Throbbing pain in left side of head, worse in the eyeball and forehead, and extending back to occiput, better from quiet. Aching over the eye, worse from study and motion, better from sitting still. Heavy pain in supra-orbital region, extending to vertex. worse from motion or rolling the eyes. sharp, shooting, cutting pains in the temples. Full heavy pain in vertex, worse on stooping and moving pain in occiput extending down neck and spine. Confusion in the base of the brain.

Eyes. Yellow sclerotica. Conjunctivitis; worse right eye; better from washing with cold water and by cold air; worse in a warm room, with difficulty in keeping eyes open, and sticky sensation on reading. Dryness and sensation of sand in the eyes (Arsenicum, Causticum, Hepar s., Ignatia, Mercurius, Pulsatilla, Rhus tox., Sepia, Silicea, Sulphur). Feeling of sticks in the eyes. Agglutination in the morning on waking. heaviness of the lids on studying, cannot keep them open (Gelsemium). Vision dim and confused; as if looking through a veil (Causticum, Croc., Natr. m., Pulsatilla, Sepia, Sulphur). Air looks smoky. Whirling of objects l sparks before the eyes.

Ears. Ears burn and look puffy, with sensation as if worms were crawling in them. Buzzing and hissing in the ears.

Nose. Sensation of a weight on bridge of nose (Kali bichromicum). Nose full of mucus; can only breath through the mouth, better in the open air.

Mouth. White, frothy saliva hangs in strings to the floor. Taste sour; bitter; bad.

Throat. Throat red, feels raw and scraped (Ammonium c., caust., carb v., Nux v., Phosphorus, Pulsatilla,Sulph.); stiff and hot, as if burnt; with thick, white mucus to tonsils; great difficulty in swallowing, with sensation as if he throat would split open; soreness, worse on let side; worse after sleep (Apis, Lachesis, Sulphur); better after eating.

Stomach. Appetite increased then lost. thirst unquenchable for cold water. Empty or sour eructations. Waterbrash. Nauseated, faint feeling in epigastrium. worse on rising and moving about. Sensation of weight at pit of stomach,with ineffectual desire to eructate.

Abdomen. Rumbling. Emission of flatus. Sharp stitching pains in hepatic region; in umbilical region; mostly on left side. Sensation of giving way in epigastrium.

Stool and Anus Stinging and itching in anus during and after stool. Stools yellow, copious, oily, frequent; light colored, with straining; soft plugs, shooting away easy, then much flatus; quick, s if greased; sweetish smell, as of boiling soap.

Urinary Organs. Dribbling micturition. Urine yellow; dark yellow, with strong odor; scanty; copious and pale; urates abundant; contained much indican, numerous granular cylinders and fatty degenerated epithelium.

Male Sexual Organs. Terrible erections at night, with restless sleep. Great desire and violent erections all night. with emissions. Desire, with almost constant priapism day and night.

Female Sexual Organs,. In left ovarian region, aching: twinges of pain. Yellowish-brown leucorrhoea in place of the menses which are delayed. Voluptuous pruritus at night in bed, before menses.

Respiratory Organs. Dry cough, as from dust in the throat, Tightness of chest, as if encircled by a band (Cact.).

Heart and Pulse. Fluttering. Palpitation. Pulse slow, small, feeble and irregular.

Back. Pain in back, worse from sitting. Heaviness and weakness in the back and limbs. Dragging pains in region of kidneys. Burning along spine, worse on trying to stud, better on motion.

Limbs. Great heaviness of the limbs, especially the left; of arms and legs on exertion, especially legs; weakness and heaviness of the legs; and in region of hips; worse on left side. Numbness of the lower limbs. Feet feel s if frost bitten (Agar).

Generalities. Tired feeling on the least exertion; with lame sensation over the whole body. No desire to talk or to do anything; indifferent to everything. Numbness, with pains, as when taking cold.

Skin. Yellow. Pimples and boils, especially on face; painful.

Sleep. Frequent yawning. Sleepiness; in evening; better from walking in the open air. sleep sound, but unrefreshing. Sleepless all night. Restless sleep. Constant dreams.

Fever. Cold extremities; cold feet. Chilliness predominates. Heat in lower dorsal and lumbar regions. Cold, clammy sweat.

Aggravation. From study; after sleep (Lachesis) from motion (except burning in spine.).

Amelioration. In open air; walking in open air; cold water; at rest.

Compare. Argentum nit., Causticum, coccul., Gelsemium, Lachesis, Petrol., Phosphorus, Phosphorus ac., Pulsatilla, Sepia, Silicea, Sulphur


Picric Acid has proved extremely valuable in brain fat (Phosphorus) and neurasthenia (Phosphorus ac.). The indications for its use are to be found in the pathogenesis. An important characteristic is the general prostration, both mental and physical,from any attempt at mental labor. A valuable remedy in occipital headache, worse from any mental effort. Has proved useful in hysteria; aching in left ovarian region; Leucorrhoea in place of menses; great exhaustion during menses (Coccul.),etc.,. A case of hysteria is authentically reported as speedily alleviated by administering Picric Acid to the husband for alleviated by administering Picric Acid to the husband for “toothache” in which is a thought worthy of consideration. A valuable remedy in sexual weakness, with seminal emissions and general exhaustion, even threatening paralysis. Dim vision from neurasthenia, especially sexual neurasthenia. deafness following long-continued nervous headaches and prostration. Nephritis, chronic or subacute; dark, scanty urine; dragging pain in region of kidneys; great prostration. Probably an antipsoric remedy (see cases reported in Medical Advance, April, 1890). Pimples and boils on the face. Said to be especially useful when there is a disposition to boils on the back of the neck, or within the ears.

About the author

A.C. Cowperthwaite

A.C. Cowperthwaite

A.C. (Allen Corson) Cowperthwaite 1848-1926.
ALLEN CORSON COWPERTHWAITE was born at Cape May, New Jersey, May 3, 1848, son of Joseph C. and Deborah (Godfrey) Cowperthwaite. He attended medical lectures at the University of Iowa in 1867-1868, and was graduated from the Hahnemann Medical College of Philadelphia in 1869. He practiced his profession first in Illinois, and then in Nebraska. In 1877 he became Dean and Professor of Materia Medica in the recently organized Homeopathic Department of the State University of Iowa, holding the position till 1892. In 1884 he accepted the chair of Materia Medica, Pharmacology, and Clinical Medicine in the Homeopathic Medical College of the University of Michigan. He removed to Chicago in 1892, and became Professor of Materia Medica and Therapeutics in the Chicago Homeopathic Medical College. From 1901 he also served as president of that College. He is the author of various works, notably "Insanity in its Medico-Legal Relations" (1876), "A Textbook of Materia Medica and Therapeutics" (1880), of "Gynecology" (1888), and of "The Practice of Medicine " (1901).

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *