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Lachnanthes tinctoria, spirit weed, was sent to Dr. C. Hering by Dr. Byron, from Monticello, Florida, with a letter dated November 3d, 1852. In this letter Dr. Byron says, “with the above I send you a plant, known among the Indians as 'spirit weed,' which means an exciting weed; root and flowers are the parts used by the natives to produce as they say a shining eye and big face, which means a brilliant eye and flushed and swelled face. They use it by chewing and in water; those using it look bold,' big' and talk loud (speak eloquent), as soon as its effects pass away the user becomes stupid and very irritable. I have given it as a medicine in several instances.
First day, Aconite and Belladonna alternately; pulse 95; her mind restored. Second day, the same; no further improvement. Third day, Rhus and Aconite alternately every two hours; pulse 90; less pain in the chest; hard dry cough; expectoration like bricks and like matter. Fourth day, Bryonia 12; pulse 100; cough not so dry; less pain, but derangement of mind and a chill. Fifth day, Arsenic and six hours afterwards Carbo veg; pulse 110; breathing more free; no pain; fullness of head; mouth very dry. Pulsatilla and Acon. until the eighth day. All this time the eyes were unnaturally bright; the face red flushed, without losing it for a moment. Here I made the first trial and gave this “spirit weed,” and in nine hours face and eyes had lost their redness and brilliancy, in thirty-six hours eye and face sunk into a sallow and lifeless appearance. In this stage Aconite had the best influence. On the twelfth day my patient was convalescent, if it had not been for this weed I do not know in what it might have resulted. I have used the same weed in two other cases, when its efficacy was equally true and prompt.
In order that we might determine this new weed properly, I wrote to Professor Asa Gray, of Cambridge, and sent him the plant. He replied under the 15th of January and said that it was Lachnanthes tinctoria and referred to his manual, page 481.
The stinging sensation changed in a few minutes into a pressing pain and extended from the left part of the forehead to the right side, over the whole forehead as if it was pressing from within outwards. Tingling in the lower parts of both legs from the knees to the ankles. The pressing pain in the forehead became a dull sensation, in the whole forehead.
Nine and a quarter, a.m. Burning in the juncture of the ilium with the sacrum, deep, internally, drawing towards the right side. Soon after burning in the region of the left kidney, deep internally drawing towards the right side.
After midnight, stitches as with a knife in quick succession, in the right side of the chest under the right breast; motion or rest have no influence, afterwards stitches as with knives in the region of the left collar bone.
Two, p.m. When reading writing, a small grey spot as large as a lentil is running before the left eye, but not when reading print or when sewing, this lasted till five, p.m.; at five, p.m., ill-humored and sleepy. In bed the cough is worse and prevents sleep.
March 3d. Headache in the morning, worse at noon; she becomes more giddy; in the evening the headache is a stinging pain. Six, p.m., the head feels enlarged and as if split open with a wedge from the outside to within, the body is icy cold, she can not get warm although one and a half hours under a feather bed; the whole face becomes yellow; she has to whine with the headache, the head burns like fire with much thirst. External heat applied by heated flat-irons to warm the body. During the cold sensation the skin is moist and sticky. At nine, p.m., she becomes warm and perspiration continues till seven, a.m. When she then rises she only feels weak.
March 7th. In the afternoon, burning heat, with redness of the face, more on the right side, after the heat had ceased circumscribed dark redness of the cheeks, worse on the right side — bright sparkling eyes.
March 19th and 20th. Stinging headache, and that every day up to the 14th of April. Drowsiness during the day, but when sleeping she sees all kind of images. During the night she is overwakeful without much debility. Tearing in the limbs. In the afternoons, circumscribed redness of the face. From six till twelve, p.m., fever, then better with redness of the face, and more on the upper part of the face. Twitching of the can thus. Dryness of the eyes. Much thirst. Aversion to meat. Spots before the eyes as before. Burning in the palms of the hands and the soles of the feet.
Curative Effects. — A lady who had an ulcerated sore throat for which she had taken large doses of Mercury and had her throat burned by Argentum nit., was first relieved by Nitric acid200, but the continued great dryness in the throat, especially at night when awaking, accompanied by much cough, was greatly improved by one dose of Lachnanthes.
“On the day that I received the first dose of Lachnanthes I went to see my typhoid pneumonia patient. I found her with very red face and her other symptoms very little abated since my visit the day before. I dissolved the Lachnanthes in water and gave it her immediately. On visiting her the next day, I found her doing very well. The redness had left the face very soon after the medicine was given and all the rest of the pneumonia symptoms much better, indeed almost entirely removed. She has continued to improve ever since. I saw her today again. Her face got very red while I was there, but I could not be certain it was not from excitement. I thought it best to let this day pass over without giving another dose of Lachnanthes. She had a hard dry cough, which appeared to proceed altogether from the larynx and as the expectoration was white I gave Pulsatilla, and left directions with her sister that, if the redness of the face continued, then to-morrow to give the other dose of Lachnanthes. Her case was one of bad typhoid fever before pneumonia set in, and her father, Dr. Thomas, Homoeopathist, Wilmington. Del., considered her case altogether hopeless, and left her under the impression that he would never see her again alive. She is now, however, in a fair way of recovery.”
In a later letter, under February 7th, 1864, Dr. Duffield communicates some more particulars of the case. He says, “that in the second week of typhoid fever the inflammatory lung symptoms set it, that Bryonia seemed at first indicated and later Phosphorus, but neither arrested the progress of the disease. It was then that he gave Lachnanthes2 dissolved in water, a tablespoonful every two hours. The improvement lasted for one week, and then Pulsatilla was given but the inflammatory symptoms returning, the second of Lachnanthes was administered in water as before; she then fully recovered and remains well.” Dr. Duffield in a later letter recapitulates the symptoms of the patient and says the symptoms were as follows: “Great soreness over the abdomen with great sensitiveness to touch; pulse quick, 110, small and wiry; bowels costive. At between one and two every morning, delirium at times very great, wanted to be dressed and go from the house; face then red; circumscribed redness in the middle of the cheeks, continues till morning; tongue coated yellowish brown and dry. Bryonia and Rhus were given with but little effect, on the seventh day deafness set in and on the eighth day excessive pain in the lungs, with violent cough and bloody expectoration. Aconite and then Phosphorus were given, and at one, a.m., Belladonna for the delirium. She now had much wind on the stomach, with which she was much harassed, without any favorable symptom for seven days, except deafness which became almost total. It was at this stage I received the Lachnanthes which I dissolved in water, and ordered it to be given every two hours (a tablespoonful). I visited her the next morning and, found a decided change for the better. There had been less delirium, at two, a.m.; the pulse was soft and reduced to 100; the expectoration no longer discolored; the tongue beginning to clean along the edges; the expression of the countenance was life-like; her eyes had lost their great brilliancy. The improvement continued for seven days, when slight pneumonia symptoms set in again which were promptly removed by another dose of Lachnanthes. I first visited her on the 12th of October, and paid her my last visit on the 15th of November, but she had required no medicine after the 10th of November. She is now fat and hearty, her hearing is entirely restored. I must ascribe the favorable change in her case to the Lachnanthes, the very first spoonful of which her nurse said had a marked visible good effect. So confident am I of the benefit from the Lachnanthes that, in a similar case, I should not hesitate to use it with the fullest confidence in a beneficial result.”
- Great loquacity, afterwards stupid and irritable. Seminoles. Br. Byron.
- Towards evening hilarity; third day. R:
- Feels well; ninth day. B.
- Feels well in the morning; thirteenth day. B.
- While dozing through the day she sees images. B.
- Giddiness in the head with sensation of heat in the chest and around the heart; third day. R.
- Dizziness in the head, with perspiration with boiling and bubbling in the chest and region of the heart. R.
- Dullness of the whole head; second day. R.
- Dull headache till the afternoon, as 3; tenth day. B.
- Dull headache; twenty-first day. B.
- Dull headache in the forehead and temples. R.
- Dull headache across the occiput after previous pain in the forehead; fifth day. R.
- The pressing pain in the forehead becomes a dull sensation in the whole forehead; first day. B.
- Headache pressing the eyes outward, in the forenoon; fourth day. R.
- Dull pain as from a bruise from the os lachrymalis going over the left eye in the temple and behind the ear. R.
- Pressing in the right temple.
- Pain in the right side of the forehead around to the right occiput, when laying down; fifth day. R.
- The head feels enlarged and as if split open with a wedge from the outside to within, the body is icy cold, she can not get warm although one hour and a half under a feather bed, the whole face becomes yellow; she has to whine with the headache, the head burns like fire with much thirst; during the cold sensation the skin is moist and sticky; seventh day. B.
- A similar attack as yesterday but less severe; eighth day. B.
- Painful tearing in the forehead in the open air; fifth day. R.
- Tearing in the forehead; in the left temple towards the right side of the forehead.
- The tearing in the forehead continues through the night, awakens him frequently from his sleep; sixth day. R.
- Tearing in the left; temple down into the left upper molar teeth; second day. R.
- Tearing in the right temple down into the cheek; third day. R.
- A continuous stitch in the left forehead from within to without, becomes after a few minutes a pressing pain and extends over the whole forehead pressing from within to without; first day. R.
- Pricking headache; 22d and 23d days. B.
- Headache in the morning, worse at noon, she became more giddy, in the evening pricking headache; seventh day. B.
- Headache till ten, a.m. B.
- Pain in the forehead with general heat, alternating with crampy pain in the chest; at last it tears in the nose and the shoulders; second day. Borr.
- When lying down he feels the palpitation of the heart in the head; third day. R.
- Burning of the head like fire. B.
- Sensation as if the hair were standing on end, worse in the occiput; first day. R.
- The whole scalp is painful even when touched; second day. R.
- Soreness of the scalp on the vertex.
- The scalp is very painful even to the touch. C. R.
- On the forehead elevated red pimples; 14th day. B.
- His sight becomes obscured after fifteen minutes. R.
- His sight becomes obscured, continuing from one to two hours; second day. R.
- His sight becomes obscured. C. R.
- His sight becomes obscured, nine, a.m.; 10th day. R.
- When reading writing a small gray spot, as large as a lentil, is running before the left eye, but not when reading print or when sewing, this lasted till five, p.m.; fourth day. B.
- Spots before the eyes as before; fifth day. B.
- While reading in the forenoon, a large yellow spot as large as a hand on the paper which follows as he reads; fifth day. R.
- If he looks long on one spot it becomes dark before the eyes, very soon after taking the medicine; 2d day. R.
- If he suddenly moves his head, it becomes dark before his eyes; third day. R.
- Pupils very much enlarged; second day. R.
- The pupils become enlarged; third day. R.
- Brilliant eyes; eleventh day. B.
- Brilliant eyes, red face and delirium during pneumonia. Dr. Byron.
- Brilliant eyes, circumscribed redness of the cheeks, violent delirium during pneumonia nervosa. Dr. Duffield.
- Sensation in the left os lachrymalis, as if something separated itself; followed by a dull bruised sensation which extends to the left eye, to the left temple and behind the left ear; second day. R.
- Headache pressing out of the eyes. R.
- Pressing in the left eye; in the afternoon of the tenth day. R.
- Pressing above the left eye, near the glabella; seventh day. R.
- Pressing in the eyes, as from dust, first in the right eye then in both, worse in the right eye; first day. R.
- Pressing as from dust in the eyes with secretion of white mucus. R.
- Secretion of white mucus from both eyes; first day. R.
- Secretion of white mucus in the canthi; fourth day. R.
- Secretion of white mucus in the afternoon; first and second days. R.
- Pressing in both external canthi.
- Itching in the internal left canthus; second day. R.
- Eyes dry. B.
- It draws the eye-brows and upper eye-lids upwards, so that he has his looks fixed; they recede again if he tries to bring them down by force, this lasts one hour; second day. R.
- Sensation of twitching in the upper eye-lids, one, p.m.; first day. R.
- The edges of the eye-lids are a little swollen; 4th day. R.
- In the afternoon the left upper eye-lid, near the inner canthus, begins to itch; a small hard knot is formed on the spot which becomes red. C. R.
- The right eye begins also to itch, but it does not become red. C. R.
- The redness on the left upper eyelid has extended further and is covered with little vesicles, they itch a great deal. After four days all has disappeared. C. R.
- Singing before the left ear; first day. R.
- Singing in the right ear when walking in the open air, in the afternoon.
- Cracking in the right ear, followed by a sensation as if it would discharge something; fourth day. B.
- Tearing in the left ear, of short duration; third day. R.
- Tearing in the left ear; seventh day. R.
- Tearing in the right ear; seventh day. R.
- Tingling in the right ear, eleven, a.m.; first day. R.
- Crawling in the left ear relieved by boring with the finger in the ear, but immediately returning, it feels then as if something had closed the ear; with singing; second day. B.
- Crawling in the right ear while eating; second day. R.
- Itching in the right ear, after first putting the finger in the ear and then taking it out, sensation as if cold air entered the ear; fourth day. Borr.
- Itching in the left ear and soon afterwards in the right.
- Almost complete deafness in pneumonia nervosa. Dr. Duffield.
- Crawling in the left nostril, ten, a.m.; second day. R.
- Pressure as from a thumb on the right side of the nose; first day. R.
- Strong pressure on the left side of the nose; second day. R.
- Burning on the right side of the root of the nose; second day. R.
- Circumscribed redness of the face in the afternoon. B.
- *Circumscribed redness of the face, from one to eight, a.m., with violent delirium and brilliant eyes in pneumonia nervosa. Dr. Duffield.
- Redness of the face. Seminoles. Dr. Byron.
- Tearing from left temple into the upper molar teeth. R.
- Sensation as if the upper incisors and eye-teeth have become loose, with sensation of soreness, worse when touching them with the tongue and when closing them, half-past four, p.m.; third day. R.
- Sudden pain in all the teeth at noon when eating soup; sixth day. R.
- Pain in all the upper teeth after eating; sixth day. R.
- Sensation of swelling in the left tide of the throat, when he swallows he feels an itching in the spot; 1st day. R.
- At ten, p.m., roughness of the throat, with pricking when swallowing; continually increasing, dryness of the throat with sleeplessness, followed by hoarseness; first day. B.
- Great dryness in the throat, especially on awaking during the night with much coughing. (In a patient who had an ulcerated sore throat, and had been treated with Mercury and Nitrate of silver, she had been better after Nitric acid200.) One dose of Lachnanthes improved the dryness very much. Dr. Lippe.
- Sore throat with short cough. B.
- When swallowing, itching in the throat on the left side. R.
- While eating, crawling in the right ear. R.
- While drinking coffee, pain in all the teeth. R.
- While eating broth at noon, pains in all the teeth. R.
- After eating, pain in all the upper teeth. R.
- Stomach feels full; third day. R.
- Fullness in the pit of the stomach. C. R.
- Soon after taking the medicine, rumbling in the left side of the stomach; later, on the side of the abdomen and, later, as if in the large intestines low down, can hear it, but does not feel it Borr..
- Rolling of wind in the stomach. C. R.
- Fermentation in the abdomen. Borr.
- Continued fermentation and rumbling in the abdomen; seventh day. Borr.
- Fermentation and rumbling in the abdomen; fourth day. Borr.
- Much flatulency in the abdomen during pneumonia nervosa. Dr. Duffield.
- Fermenting and discharge of flatulency. C. R.
- Cutting in the upper part of the abdomen, from the left to the right side; first hour. Borr.
- Cutting in the right side of the abdomen above the navel, quarter past three, p.m.; third day. R.
- Cutting in the right upper side of the abdomen; seventh day. R.
- Sensation as if the bowels would be moved but they are not. R.
- Frequent desire to evacuate without result; third and fourth day. R.
- Slight desire to evacuate without result. R.
- Slight desire to evacuate, C. R.
165. Desire to evacuate, three-quarters past five, p.m.; evacuation as usual but with much discharge of flatulency and pressing (she had a regular passage every morning, but never in the evening); first day. Borr.
- After the passage the sensation of heat in the abdomen becomes less; first day. Borr.
- She has a passage in the morning and evening, second day; twice in the morning, third day. Borr.
- Continuous stitch in the anus, a.m.; first day. R.
- Sensation in the left groin as if wind was moving; second day. R.
- Cough in bed worse, also from sleeping; fourth day. B.
- Cough dry as if it came from the larynx, expectoration is streaked with blood, with severe pain in the chest, in pneumonia nervosa. Dr. Duffield.
- In the morning some cough; eighth day. B.
- In the evening some cough; ninth day. B.
- He feels full in the chest and is compelled to inhale deeply; third day. R.
- Stitches in the left side of the chest; fourth day. R.
- Stitches like knives in the region of the left clavicle previously stitches like knives in the right chest; third day. Borr.
- The stitches like knives in the right side of the chest are repeated, eight a.m.; third day. Borr. 190. Stitches like knives following one another in quick succession in the right side of the chest below the mamma, while at rest and when moving, in the afternoon; third day. Borr.
- Boiling and bubbling in the chest and the region of the heart, it rises to the head and he becomes giddy, he breaks out with a perspiration; second day. R.
- He feels warm in the chest and around the heart; third; day. R.
- Sensation of heat in the region of the heart, going and, coming; third day. R.
- She feels hot and oppressed in the chest with mild perspiration all over, of short duration, nine, p.m.; first day. Borr.
- Sensation as if sprained in the neck, when turning or moving the head backwards; second day. R.
- Stiffness in the neck following a pain in the occiput; fifth day R.
- Pressing pain under the short ribs near the right side of the spine, deep inside when taking a deep inspiration.
- Burning in the region of the left kidney, deep, extending towards the right side, half-past nine, a.m.; 2d day. R.
- Tearing in the upper part of the arm, beginning at the elbow-joint where it pains most up into the shoulder, three, p.m.; first day. R.
- Tearing in the left elbow-joint; second day. R.
- Tearing in both elbow-joints, at times upwards and then. downwards, frequently through the whole day; seventh day; R
- Crawling (itching inside of the left elbow joint, soon after in the right, also inside, worse towards evening) continues for some days. C R.
- Tearing in right arm below the elbow; eighth day. R.
- Burning of the palms of the hands and soles of the feet B
- Tearing in the knuckles of the middle fingers of the right hand; tenth day. R.
- It draws the left index finger crooked; first day. R.
- Tearing in the right ischium deep inside; third day. R..
- On the left gluteus muscle just on the point is found a pimple with a hard red circumference of the size of a penny, is very painful, when touched exceedingly sore, afterwards it is burning. C.R.
- Small pimples around the left gluteus muscle, which discharge a watery fluid when they are scratched open. C.R.
- Burning in the inside of the right thigh, far up, third day. R.
- Burning stinging in the left knee pan, of short duration; third day. R.
- Burning stinging pain above the left knee pan, half-past two, p.m.; second day. Borr,
- Burning stinging pain above the left knee on a spot of the size of a penny, nine, p.m.; second day. Borr.
- Pain below the left knee pan; seventh day. R.
- Tearing in the left knee; tenth day. R.
- Tearing in the left knee when walking; tenth day. R.
- Burning and pressing on the right knee, which becomes as red as scarlet; second day. B.
- Itching on the left tibia.
- Tearing in the right tibia.
- Cramp in the calves of the legs while lying in bed in the morning; fourth day. R.
- Sensation on the skin of the left lower leg inside, as if vesicles were bursting, very soon afterwards the same sensation on the corresponding part, of the right leg. R.
- Tingling in the lower parts of both legs from the knee down to the ankles; first day. R.
- Tingling in both lower extremities, half-past eight, a.m.; third day. R.
- Burning in the feet. Borr.
- Cramp in the left foot lasting half an hour, nine, a.m.; fifth day. B..
- Cramps in the feet during the night; sixteenth day. B.
- Stitch behind the external ankle of the right foot, half past eight, p.m, R.
- Tearing in the right big toe awakening him from his sleep; sixth day. R.
- Burning under the nail of the left big toe, half-past ten, a.m.; first day. R.
- Burning in the left big toe; third day. R.
- No sleep before midnight; tenth day. B.
- Restless sleep at night, followed by perspiration; first day. B.
- Sleeplessness with continually increasing dryness of the throat. B.
- Sleepless nights; fourteenth and sixteenth day. B.
- During the night great wakefulness without feeling weak. B.
- Distressing dreams every night. B.
- Heavy, feverish dreams towards morning; sixteenth day. B.
- In the night in bed, short cough with sore throat, followed by coryza; second day. B.
- Awakens frequently from his sleep, contrary to his habit; second day. R.
- External heat applied by heated flat-irons ameliorating the coldness. B.
- General heat with perspiration on the forehead. Borr.
- Dry heat, the feet burn; restless, tossing about with much rambling in the abdomen; second day. Borr.
- Burning heat with redness of the face more on the right side; followed by circumscribed redness of the cheeks, also more on the right side; eleventh day. B.
- Flushes of heat, alternating with chilliness, three, p.m.; seventeenth day. B.
- Feverish at night seventeenth day. B.
- Evening fever worse from six to twelve with redness of of the face, more of the upper part. B.
- *Fever with delirium, circumscribed redness of the cheeks and brilliant eyes in pneumonia. Dr. Byron.
- *Fever with delirium, worse from one to two, a.m., with brilliant eyes and circumscribed redness of the cheeks. Dr. Duffield.
- Pulse 58, half-three, p.m.; first day. R.
- Pulse 60, three-quarters past nine, a.m.; second day. R.
- Pulse 54, five, p.m., fourth day. R.
- Pulse 84, an hour after dinner, quarter past one. R.
- Pulse 68, at five, p.m., the following day at three-quarters past one, p.m., the pulse was 86. C. R.
- Pulse 110, small, thin, hard. Pneumonia. Dr. Duffield.
- Itching and burning of the skin all night, worse after scratching; second day. B.
- Stinging itching lasting one hour; twelfth day, p.m. B.
- Pimples around the gluteus muscle. C. R.
- A red hard knot in the inner canthus of the left eye. C.R.
- When lying down in the bed, pain in the right side of fore head, extending to the right occiput. R.
- When lying in bed, cramps in the calves of the legs. R.
- When lying, palpitation of the heart which is felt in the head. R.
- When lying, Stinging itching on the lower side of first joint of the second toe of right foot.
- When walking, tearing in the right knee. R.
- When walking in the open air, singing in the ears. R.
- When walking in the open air, sensation of squalmishness above the navel. R.
- In the open air, painful drawing in the forehead. R.
- When moving the head quickly, the sight becomes obscure. R.
- When turning the head or bending the head backwards, sensation of dislocation in the neck.
- By boring with the finger, crawling in the left ear relieved. R.
- When touching the upper incisors and eyeteeth with the tongue and when closing the jaw, the sore pain in the teeth is increased. R.
The imperfect provings and meagre curative reports of this new remedy show, nevertheless, that it will become an indispensable medicine. The few characteristic symptoms which strike the observing reader at once, as produced by proving it, and as having been means of cure are not to be found in the same connection under any known medicine.
Fever with circumscribed redness of the cheeks and brilliant eyes (worse from one to two, a.m.) This characteristic symptom places Lachnanthes with Belladonna, Hyoscyamus and Stramonium. It must become an important curative remedy in pneumonia nervosa and typhus fever, as well as in some diseases of the brain. It is to be hoped that repeated provings will give the homoeopathic physician more and clearer indications of its, no doubt, many curative virtues.
|Source:||The American Homoeopathic Review Vol. 04 No. 10-12, 1864, pages 457-469, pages 488-500, pages 565-570|
|Editing:||errors only; interlinks; formatting|