Last modified on January 8th, 2019


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

      Synonyms. Spongia Officinalis. Spongia Tosta. Natural order. Ceratospongiae. Common name. Sponge. Preparation. Tincture or triturations from the turkey-sponge, roasted brown, but not burnt.


Affects chiefly the larynx, trachea, thyroid gland, heart, and testicles, producing irritation, inflammation, swelling and sometimes fibrous exudations. Its action upon glandular structures enlargement and induration, as well as its inflammatory enlargements and induration, as well as its inflammation effects upon the larynx and trachea resembles closely the action of Iodine.


Mind Irresistible desire to sing, with excessive mirth, then distraction of mind and disinclination to work.

Head Dull headache in right side of brain, on coming into warm room from the open air. Sharp stitches in left temple extending to forehead. Congestion of blood to the head. (Aconite, Belladonna).

Eyes Yellow, crusty eruption, painful to touch, on left eye brow.

Nose Fluent coryza, with much sneezing (Aconite, Cepa). Dry coryza; nose stopped up (Alumina, Nux v., Sepia, Silicea).

Face Bloated, red, or bluish, with anxious expression. Heat of face. Swollen gland beneath left lower jaw, painful to touch. Stitches transversely through left upper jaw. Cram-like pain from left jaw-joint to cheek, in evening when eating.

Mouth Swelling of the submaxillary glands.

Throat Thyroid gland swollen and hard (Iodi.), with suffocative attacks at night; stitching pains and pressure.

Stomach Increased appetite. Hiccough. Bitter taste (Arsenicum, Bryonia, Nux v., Pulsatilla), especially in throat.

Urinary Organs Frequent urging to urinate.

Male Organs Pressive, painful swelling of the testicles (Clem., Rhododendron). Pinching, bruised, squeezing pain in the testicles (Aconite, Argentum nit., Rhododendron). Stitches from testicles into spermatic cord (Clem.). Spermatic cord swollen and painful.

Respiratory Organs Hoarseness; voice cracked. Great dryness, of the larynx, worse from hawking. Pain in the larynx on touching it (Aconite, Lachesis), and on turning the head; when singing. Scraping in larynx, with burning and constriction. Sensation in region of thyroid and cervical glands on breathing, as if forced in and out. Sensation of obstruction in the larynx, as from a plus (Lachesis), with impeded respiration. Incessant cough from down in chest, where there is a sore pain. Cough dry, barking (Belladonna), hollow, croupy, or wheezing and asthmatic. Dry cough day and night, with burning in the chest. Cough worse from lying with head low; from too warm room; dry, cold winds (Aconite, Hepars.); better after eating or drinking. Wheezing, whistling, sawing, anxious breathing; worse during inspiration, and when lying down. Expectoration yellow, tenacious, hard or slimy; tasting salty. Dyspnoea and great weakness in chest, so that she could hardly talk after slight exercise (Hepars., Stannum). Short, panting respiration, surging from heart into chest, as if it would force out upward. Awakens from sleep with suffocative sensation. Burning sore pain in chest chest and bronchi, with rawness in throat, when coughing. Sensation as if had to breath through a dry sponge. Chronic cough, violent attacks, brought up small, hard tubercle.

Heart and Pulse Violent palpitation of the heart (Aconite, Arsenicum, Belladonna, Lycopus, Spigelia, Sulphur), with pain and gasping respiration; awakens after midnight with suffocation, great alarm, and anxiety. Pulse full, hard and frequent. Aconite, Belladonna, Veratrum vir.).

Back and Neck Painful stiffness of muscles of neck and throat; on left side when turning head to the right. Coldness in back, not relieved by warmth of stove.

Limbs Twitching of the muscles about the left shoulder joint. Cramp- like pain in the ball of the right thumb; on moving hand, extends to thumb.

Generalities. Extreme exhaustion and heaviness of the body after slight exertion, with orgasm of blood in chest, heat of face, vessels hard and distended, great anxiety, and difficult breathing. Heaviness when walking in open air, must sit down.

Sleep Sleepy, yawning, no activity, afternoons, Sleep interrupted by dreams.

Fever Feverish heat, with hot, dry skin (Aconite, Arsenicum); anxious heat; red face; weeping; inconsolable; wants to die.

Aggravation At night; lying with head low; in the room; when ascending.

Amelioration When descending; after eating and drinking especially the cough; when resting in horizontal position.

Conditions Children and women, especially with light complexion and lax skin and muscles.

Compare Aconite, Belladonna, Bromium, Bryonia, Calcareac., Carb. v., Coni., Drosera, Hepars., Ignatia, Iodi., Kali bichromicum, Lycopodium, Mercurius, Nux v., Phosphorus, Pulsatilla, Rhus tox., Sepia, Spigelia, Stannum, Sulphur Aconite or Hepars. Precede Spongia well. After it, Bromium, Hepar s.

Antidote Camph.


The most common use of Spongia is in croup, in which it is a most valuable remedy, though it is often prescribed when a careful selection of Iodine or Bromine would answer better. The virtues of Spongia largely depend upon the small mouth of Iodine and Bromine which the drug contains, especially the former. Spongia is not indicated in croup with high fever and dry hot skin, but in cases when this condition is not present, or after it has been subdued by Aconite, a dry, barking croupy cough, and anxious, wheezing, whistling, sawing respiration, with suffocative attacks, still remaining. If Spongia fails to relieve, consult Iodium or Bromium If the symptoms are similar to Spongia but more moisture, there being a slight mucous rattling in the respiration, give Hepar Sulph. Aconite, Hepar Sulph. and Spongia are all indicated in croup arising from dry cold winds. Suffocative attacks are more common in Spongia than any other drug except Bromine. Generally of little value after membranes have formed. Acute laryngitis, with similar symptoms to those first mentioned, larynx very sensitive to touch and sore when turning the head. Laryngismus stridulus. Laryngeal phthisis, with great hoarseness; voice gives out when reading or talking (Phosphorus). Bronchial. Whooping cough, worse midnight and from cold air. Pneumonia, stage of resolution, patient cannot lie down, profuse mucus expectoration. Phthisis, especially following pneumonia; beginning in apex of (left) lung; hoarseness; suffocative attacks, worse from exposure to dry cold air. Often useful in organic diseases of the heart, when the patient cannot lie flat with the head low without bringing on suffocative attacks. Rheumatic endocarditis; loud blowing with each beat of the heart. Angina pectoris; contracting pain in chest; heat, suffocation, faintness, anxious sweats. Aneurism of aorta; dry, paroxysmal cough; worse lying down. A valuable remedy in goitre (Consult pathogenesis). Sometimes useful in enlarged and indurated testicles, after maltreated orchitis, or following checked gonorrhoea; spermatic cords swollen and painful, etc.

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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