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Materia Medica by Kent



ARUM TRIPHYLLUM

(arum-t)

Many boys have wandered in the low grounds where this wild turnip grows, and have taken a nip out of it, and probably remember the sensations in the mouth that they received at that time. I distinctly remember making an endeavor to enjoy a piece of wild turnip. The tingling that is left in the lips and tongue and from the throat to the end of the nose, and wherever sentient nerves come to the surface, is astonishing. The prickling and tingling is painful. It is a sensation that cannot be let alone. It requires a continued manipulation, and from this we gather the sensations that must be present in children when they are suffering from acute diseases and this remedy is indicated. For, in spite of the rawness and bleeding and smarting of the parts, they will insist on pinching and scratching and picking the lips and pressing around the mouth and boring into the nose. It has been a guiding feature in acute diseases, scarlet fever, many throat affections, diseases that take on a low type, such as continued fever and eruptive fevers. Among other complaints, sore throats, zymotic affections, delirium and excitement, even maniacal manifestations. It is manifested to a great extent in these associated symptoms. It must be that there is in the nose and lips painful tingling that the patient persists in boring the fingers into the nose. Manipulating and pinching the lips, picking the lips. It is altogether a different symptom that . occurs in delirium of a low, muttering type, which we call carphologia, picking the bed clothes, picking all the time, picking and handling the clothing, a busy, low form of muttering, must be doing something all the time, groping around with the fingers and feeling for something. This is the carphologia and it is a mental symptom. While "picking the lips" is given under the "mental" symptoms in the repertory, it is not intended to mean that it is a mental symptom like carphologia. Now, you will find two expressions in the repertory, and it is necessary to have two—the one is that "the nose itches," and the other is "he rubs the nose," he does something; that is what an individual would do if his nose itched. One's mind is not always directed towards the two—one is a direct and the other is an indirect expression.

 

This remedy has not been sufficiently proved to bring out the nature of its chronic manifestations. It has undoubtedly something of that kind, but it has been used in a limited way among acute affections of a zymotic character. It has not been used to any great extent for chronic sick headaches, but it has cured some headaches that are worse in the heat, worse in a warm room and from warm clothing, worse from becoming warm, worse from wrapping up the body. Heat in the head, determination of blood to the head. It has also cured eruptions upon the scalp like eczema. It has also been found useful in catarrhal affections of the nose, eyes and lids. About the nose its affections have been mostly of the acute kind. It has most dreadful coryza. The nose is stopped up, and more stopped up on the left side. Must breathe through the mouth. Sneezing worse during the night; fluent acrid coryza. The discharge of saliva flowing over the lips produces rawness, smarting and burning of the mucous membranes, and the lips bleed. The fluid from the nose as it flows over the skin leaves red streaks. "Acrid ichorous discharge excoriating the inside of the nose, the alas and upper lip." That is expressive and occurs in diphtheria, in various forms of sore throat, in scarlet fever, when this remedy is indicated.

 

Inflammation of the tongue, with acrid discharge from the nose. Inflammation of the root of the tongue, of the throat and soft palate, of the tonsils. The glands of the neck are swollen. This inflammatory condition is followed by paralytic weakness, making it impossible for him to swallow liquids or food, and when the mouth forces food into the pharynx the oesophagus refuses to operate, and then fluids and liquids are forced up into the nose and run out of the nose. This has been clinically observed many times in diphtheria and sore throats. The sneezing is like an ordinary coryza, with repeated chills over the body, and aching in the bones as if the bones would break, like NUX, EUPATOR., AM., RHUS, BRY. and ARS., that have aching all over during "cold." This is one of the most striking medicines as an illustration of the keynote system, that is, with those who prescribe on one symptom and give this medicine whenever the patient bores his nose or picks his lips, notwithstanding that CINA bores the nose and picks the lips. CINA has more of the congestive and nerve symptoms. The nostrils are really so sore from the acridity of the fluids inside of the nose that it feels as if the nostrils were filled with fire. This is the language of the patients who narrate their symptoms in an Arum triphyllum case. They come into the office with a sore, raw nose, and it tingles and tickles and he cannot let it alone. Fluids run down over the lip and excoriate. The glands of the neck are often enlarged. When he takes cold in the nose there is soreness of the neck and parotid gland. Desire to bore into the nose. This boring into THE SIDE of the nose is another symptom and differs from the one "boring the nose." You will see children boring in the nose, inside of nose. It is an inflammation of the nasal duct, the duct that leads from the eye to the nose, and accompanied by a discharge of tears over the cheeks, with the tickling that extends up there which they cannot reach, but they undertake to reach it. Can hardly talk on account of phlegm in the back part of the nose. He talks through the nose. The nose is filled with mucus and there is great tumefaction of all the mucous membranes, which gives him a nasal tone. "Swollen, bloated face." If you observe the nose and face you will be surprised to see that so much of the trouble is on the LEFT side of the face, left nostril, left lachrymal duct, etc. There is bleeding of the lips, upper and lower. The under lip especially is denuded and drops of blood stand upon it, and the patient is constantly picking and pinching the lips, and when you request of the little one to stop it or take his hands away he yells with a sort of sepulchral yell. "Children will often pick and bore into raw surfaces, though it gives them pain and they scream with it, but they keep on boring." That is a striking symptom. Fluids make the lips raw and then this tickling comes on and he cannot let it alone, he must keep at it. "Appearance of raw bleeding surfaces on the lips, buccal cavity, nose, etc." Great itching tingling describes it. In typhoid, where you would hardly expect much swelling of the parotid, these glands are enlarged. In diphtheria, scarlet fever and sore throat enlargement of the salivary glands. This inflammatory condition with soreness and swelling of these glands; the glands are hard and tender to the touch. The tongue is red, the papillae elevated; the tongue appears to be almost denuded. It is raw and bleeding, sometimes does bleed in a few places, and sometimes, after this has gone on for a few days, when the tongue is projected it looks like a big red strawberry, and for that reason has been called "Strawberry tongue:" "Tongue cracked, bleeding, burning, painful; smarting on tongue and fauces." Putrid odor from the mouth. Mouth foul, so sore that he was unwilling to drink. All this points to tingling and raw condition of the buccal cavity far back into the throat. If you look into the buccal cavity you will see the parts raw, denuded and bleeding. Excessive flow of saliva, which is acrid. Mouth burns and is sore. Cries when anything is offered. Buccal cavity covered with diphtheritic ulcers, also with aphthous patches, which cover the whole mouth and tongue. It says "stinging," but it is a painful tingling, stinging like the sting of a bee, stinging pains in the throat, and the parts are ulcerated, raw and bleed.

 

It has a diarrhoea, such as occurs in idiopathic typhoid. If you have ever seen the yellow corn-meal mush when it is dropped on a plate, it has the appearance of the typhoid yellow stools. When this medicine is suitable diarrhoea is yellow like corn-meal; frequent, faecal, thin, mushy, yellow, is the description of this typhoid stool. There are other times that the stool is dark brown, watery, thin. As is usual, the faeces are acrid. The thin fasces escape from the anus and keep the parts raw and burning. With other complaints, in typhoid especially, in the groin where the thigh bends upon the abdomen an excoriation takes place with acrid moisture. Again, we notice rawness over the coccyx. A moisture and rawness from acrid fluid in the posterior part of the fissure back of the anus so that over the coccyx and back of the anus there is rawness and acrid moisture.

 

The voice comes in for an extensive part of the trouble. It has been found especially to relate to singers and public speakers. At times when a lawyer has had a long case and he is making a final effort, and has been speaking three or four hours, and while in a sweat has got into a draft or gone out, he finds himself hoarse and cannot finish his Speech, a dose of Arum triph. will enable him to go on with his speech in a clear voice. It clears up the hoarseness. In public speakers and singers who have been compelled to strain the voice and have taken a little cold and the voice is hoarse after prolonged exercise; this is the most striking feature of the Arum triph. voice. "Voice hoarse; from over-exertion of the voice in speaking or singing." "Voice uncertain, uncontrollable, changing continually, now deep, now hoarse, etc." It manifests itself in this way. A person starts in a certain pitch and he cannot talk to you, but he tries another pitch and can talk. It is a queer thing that on certain notes they are voiceless, which shows that there is an irregular and patchy inflammation of the vocal cords; it is not a uniform inflammation or the voice would be uniformly affected. "Clergyman's sore throat," is not a good expression, because it is clergyman's hoarseness that is meant; hoarseness and rawness of the throat of public speakers when talking. Of course you would say any voice that is hoarse is aggravated when talking, but it is not always so. The RHUS hoarseness carries with it its characteristic relief from motion, and the use of the voice is motion of the larynx.

 

When the RHUS PATIENT commences to use the voice he finds that he is hoarse, but after using the voice a little, it loosens up, becomes freer, or, in other words, it is better from motion. This may be so either in acute or chronic hoarseness. Now, in this remedy as in PHOSPHORUS, the voice is ameliorated from clearing the vocal cords of a little mucus. It is not so in RHUS TOX., for it is a weakness and paralysis from cold. It is well known under RHUS TOX. that the tendons and muscles that are rheumatic become weak, they are stiff on beginning to move and are ameliorated when they are warmed up; so it is with the voice.

 

Now, in the chest there is burning and rawness when coughing; this extends to the pit of the stomach. "Raw feeling in chest." "Lungs feel sore." "Soreness in 1eft lung." You will notice that many times patients and probers state sufferings are in the lungs, which may not really be the region affected. Most likely from what is known of other symptoms this burning is in the trachea, although it says in the lungs. This remedy does have burning in the trachea, the whole length of it, during an attack of coughing, and burning in the larger branches of the bronchial tubes. The catarrhal state is largely confined to these parts, the trachea and bronchi, but this medicine has cured pneumonia. It has been found useful as a palliative in phthisis. It is used in crude form among the farmers as a domestic medicine for coughs and colds and as a palliative in consumption. In many of the farm houses you will find the wild turnip hung up in strings like beads to be dried and grated and used with sugar and cream.

 

I mentioned the fact that it seems to favor the left side of the head, the left nostril, the left side of the face. It also prefers the left chest and the left lung. It has soreness in the left side of the chest and left arm. It has a sensation of fullness in the thorax and soreness extending down and involving the left lung.

 

Here is a clinical picture of fever: "Typhoid forms of fever; picking ends of fingers and dry lips till they bleed, etc."

 

In most of these complaints the urine is very scanty and is sometimes suppressed. You will very commonly note a good action of this medicine in these complaints by its immediately starting up a copious flow of urine. It is a sign of relief.

 

It has upon the skin all the scarlet rash that you would expect to find in scarlet fever, and it has also the typoid petechias.