Last modified on January 10th, 2019

A.C. Cowperthwaite

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

      Synonym. Plumbum Metallicum. Common name. Lead. Preparation. Triturations of precipitated Lead.


Acts especially and with great power upon the spinal nerve centers, first producing irritation, giving rise primarily to increased sensibility, neuralgic spasms, and convulsions. This condition of the nerve centers gradually gives way to softening or induration (also cerebral degeneration), and as a result of this process there are anaesthesia, paralysis, muscular atrophy, mental and physical decay, while at the same time there may kindred affections of e nervous system. Plumbum acts directly upon the kidneys, causing granular degeneration of these organs, and producing albuminuria hence its use in. Bright’s disease and other renal affections. It may also cause degeneration of he heart, liver and other organs. According to Allen characterized by proliferation of connective tissue (nerve muscles, and parenchyma of organs).”

The chief feature of Plumbum is the well known :lead colic,” or “painter’s colic,” characterized by excruciating spasmodic pains in the abdomen, from contraction of the colon, with obstinate constipation.


Mind. Slow perception; apathetic (Phosphorus, Phosphorus ac.). Loss of memory (Anacardium, Natr. mur., Nux moschata, Mercurius, Phosphorus ac.); unable to fine proper word while talking (Dulcamara). comas. Quiet and melancholy mood. Wild delirium with distorted countenance. Delirium; dread of assassination, poisoning;;thinks every one about him a murderer.

Head. Vertigo. Aching. Heaviness in the head, especially in cerebellum. Pain and heaviness in forehead. headache, as if a ball were rising from the throat into the brain.

Eyes. Yellowness of the sclerotica Cinchona,Causticum, Chelidonium) of conjunctiva. Hypopion. Diplopia. Loss of vision. Disc prominent, opaque, its outline hazy. Pain in eyeballs, as if too large (Calcarea, Phosphorus ac., Spigelia). Paralysis of the upper lid (Causticum, Gelsemium, Nitr. ac., Opium). Pupils dilated.

Face. Sallow, pale complexion, like a corpse (Carb. v.). Expression of extreme anxiety and suffering (Arsenicum, Camph., Veratrum alb.). Lockjaw (cic., In.,Hyoscyamus, Laur.).

Mouth. Distinct blue line along margins of gums. Tongue dry and white. Tongue paralyzed cannot put it out (Caust, dulc., Gelsemium, Hyoscyamus, lach.). Breath foetid. Imperfect articulation (Causticum, Gelsemium, Hyoscyamus, Stramonium). Sometimes only confused sounds. Margin of tongue red, brown fur down the center (Baptisia, Phosphorus); state-colored, along border coated. Dryness of the mouth (Apis, Arsenicum, Bryonia, Nux moschata, Pulsatilla). Taste sweetish (AEsc., Bryonia, Merc, cor., Sulphur); bitter, metallic.

Throat. Constriction of the throat when trying to swallow (Belladonna, Hyoscyamus, Stramonium). Tonsils swollen, inflamed and indurated. Paralysis of the the throat, with inability to swallow (Belladonna Opium, Nux moschata)

Stomach. Loss of appetite (Alumina, Arsenicum, cinch., Phosphorus). Violent thirst (Aconite, Arsenicum, Bryonia, Mercurius, Phosphorus ac.). Eructations sweetish, sour (Carb. v., Nux v., Phosphorus, Sulphur); of offensive odor (Chamomilla, Kreosotum, Phosphorus, Sepia, Veratrum alb.). Hiccough. Nausea. Incessant vomiting of good; of faecal matter;l of brownish or blackish substances (Arsenicum, Phos);streaked with blood. Pressure and tightness about the stomach. Pains extending from the stomach to the loins and down the limbs. Feeling in epigastrium as if a ball ascended to throat, where it caused suffocation, preventing speaking and swallowing with anxiety.

Abdomen. Violent colic; abdomen retracted to the spine, as if drawn in a string (Chelidonium, Podophyllum, Tabac.). Constriction of he intestines;l navel violently retracted, recti muscles hard and knotty. Excruciating pains in umbilical region, shoot to other portions of the abdomen and body; somewhat relieved by pressure. Rumbling in the bowels. Sensitiveness to touch. Lacerating pains in the umbilicus and epigastrium.

Stool and Anus. Anus drawn up. with constriction. diarrhoea; alternating with constipation. Constipation; stools scanty, hard, in lumps or balls like sheep’s dung (Alumina, Kali carb., Opium, Mag. mur.); blackish or green color; passed with difficult.

Urinary Organs. Difficult micturition; urine passes only in drops (Aconite,Belladonna, Cantharis); ineffectual urging; strangury.(Mercurius cor.). Urine dark- colored and scanty (Osm); albuminous (Mercurius cor., Osm., Phosphorus, Phytolacca); brownish-red, turbid, acid, flocculent sediment, consisting of red blood, corpuscles and cylinders; all the symptoms of acute diffuse nephritis with amaurosis and cerebral symptoms.

Male Organs. Loss of sexual desire (Agn., Argentum nit., camph.), or increased desire, and violent erections (Agaricus, Cantharis, Graphites, Nitr. ac.).

Female Organs. Vaginismus (Hamamelis) Milk scanty.

Respiratory Organs. Cough short, dry, spasmodic, with purulent or bloody expectoration (cinch., Dulcamara, Kali carb., Lycopodium, Phosphorus, Sepia, Silicea) Suppuration of the lungs (Phosphorus) Pressure upon the chest (Psorinum).

Heart. Change in muscular structure without coincident disease of he valves, with or without atheromatous degeneration of vessels, usually hypertrophy and dilatation of left ventricle, sometimes with parenchymatous nephritis. Bruit de souffle. Palpitation, worse on ascending stairs or running. Pulse rapid, jerky, weak.

Limbs. Violent pains in the limbs, especially in muscular parts of thighs; worse evening and night. Sciatica. Twitching and jerking in the limbs. Trembling. Coldness of the hands and feet. Paralytic weakness in limbs. Cramp in calves, worse at night (Sulphur). Wrist drop. Trembling of he hands. Dilatation of veins on back of hands, arms and calves. Sharp, lightning-like, neuralgic pains in lower limbs, mostly from hips to knees, occurring in paroxysms; worse from movement. Pain in great toe at night.

Generalities. Extreme emaciation (Arsenicum, Natr. mur.,Phosphorus); wasting of the muscles, especially paralyzed parts. Anaemia. Anaesthesia. Hyperaesthesia. Convulsions, tonic and colic. Trembling. Restlessness. Epilepsy. General prostration; lassitude faintness; restlessness. Diminished sensibility of right side of body. Arthralgic and neuralgic pains in trunk and limbs. Wandering pains. Sensation of constriction, with pain and spasm in the internal organs. Entire lack of perspiration.

Skin. Dry, yellow (Bryonia,, Cinchona), or bluish (Lachesis). Jaundice. Dry skin.

Sleep. Sleeplessness at night; sleep during the day. REstless sleep.

Aggravation. At night; while lying in bed; from drinking.

Amelioration. From friction and strong pressure.

Compare. Alumina, Arsenicum, Belladonna, Calcarea c., Colchicum, Coni., Cuprum, Ferrum, Ledum, Lycopodium, Mercurius, Nux v., Opium, Phosphorus, Platina, Rhus tox., Stram,, Sulphur, Zincum met.

Antidotes to Lead Poisoning. Alumen, Alumina, Bell, Coccul,., Hyoscyamus, Nux v., Opium, Platina, Stramonium, Zincum met., electricity. Alcohol as a preventive. Milk.


Plumbum, from its profound action, from its profound action on the nerve centers, is one of our most important remedies in neuroses. In many forms of paralyses it is often valuable, as has already been indicated in the pathogenesis. Paralysis preceded by mental derangement, trembling, spasms or by shooting, darting, intense tearing pains in track of larger nerves; the parts emaciate; wrists drop,. caused by apoplexia,, sclerosis of brain, or progressive drop, caused by apoplexia, sclerosis of brain, or progressive muscular trophy; alternating with colic.

Spinal paralysis of a rheumatic character. Often a valuable palliative, at least in multiple cerebro-spinal sclerosis, and locomotor ataxia, especially for the violent neuralgic pains. Paralysis of the face, eyes, throat, tongue, etc. Epilepsy, chronic forms; before the spell, legs heavy and numb; tongue swollen; afterward, long-lasting, stupid feeling in head; constipation. Convulsions, tonic and clonic, with other symptoms of the drug. Lockjaw. a valuable remedy in neuralgia, especially sciatica, accompanying cerebral and spinal disease, with marked consecutive muscular atrophy, or earlier when walking causes get exhaustion. General anaemia, mucous membranes very pale, great prostration and lassitude. Chlorosis inveterate, with constipation, tendency of neuralgia., Hypopion. Dim vision from paralysis of the optic nerve. Violent gastralgia, relieved by pressure and by eructations. Persistent or periodical vomiting from cerebral disease. Excruciating colic; abdomen retracted to the spine; recti muscles hard and knotty; tympanitic distention, obstruction of he bowels and frequent vomiting. Incarcerated hernia. Hepatitis, with characteristic pains. Jaundice, with constipation, vomiting, etc. Neuralgia of the rectum. Occasional, with characteristic abdominal pains, retraction of the navel, marked spasm or contraction of the bladder. Useful in the various forms of nephritis acute and chronic, with symptoms given in aphthogenesis. Chronic bright’s disease. According to Farrington there is very little dropsy or albuminuria, but a marked tendency to uraemic convulsions. Haematuria, with excruciating pains in course of he urates. Dysmenorrhoea , with characteristic colic and retraction of navel. Vaginismus. Abortion from failure of the uterus to develop. Has been found useful in phthisis, stage of suppuration, short, dry cough, with purulent expectoration. Haemoptysis.

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).

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