This remedy, of which a proving was published by Dr. Wahle in the "Archiv," and which, in Dr.. Bïenninghausen's opinion, has not received from practitioners the attention which it merits, I mention here, because of the analogy of its action on the female sexual organs to that of Sepia and Murex. And for the reason that Kreosotum has been but little used in practice, and few of its symptoms have been verified by clinical experience, I shall not attempt a systematic statement or analysis of the pathogenesis, but proceed at once to symptoms.
THE HEAD. Dull feeling in the head, and as if a board were pressed against the forehead. Headache, as if the head were too full, and would burst out forward. In various parts of the head, pressing from within outward. Jerking, tearing and stitching pains in the anterior part of the head, semi-lateral, and extending to the cheeks, jaws, teeth and neck. Kreosote has proved curative in neuralgia, where the sensations were burning, and where the paroxysms were induced by talking, moving or sitting up or lying on the side not affected; and attended by great excitability and nervous irritability.
In the digestive apparatus, Kreosote produces, among other symptoms: rising of tasteless air after a meal, or of frothy saliva. Nausea and vomiting before breakfast, with tightness across the epigastrium, and yet an inability to bear tight clothing. It is useful in the vomiting of pregnancy.
Various pains in the abdomen, with constipation.
URINARY ORGANS. The secretion of urine is reported as both diminished and increased. But whichever be the case, there is also a disposition to evacuate it more frequently than in health, especially at night, there being much pressure upon the bladder. Boenninghausen calls attention to the value of Kreosote as a remedy in cases of incontinentia urinse nocturna, where the patient dreams he is urinating COMME IL FAUT. Sepia has incontinence during the first sleep. The desire is very sudden and imperative; and, in women, the evacuation is attended and followed by much smarting and burning of the pudenda. The urine is often turbid and offensive, depositing a reddish sediment. This is similar to Sepia, of which a characteristic symptom is " deposit of red sediment which adheres to the chamber and is removed with difficulty." Lycopodium has also a red deposit, but it is granular like sand. The deposit of Cantharides is granular but is grayish white, looking like fragments of old mortar. (Of course it is to be remembered that besides these deposits, both Lycopodium and Cantharides, as well as Dulcamara and Cannabis and Hepar may present—and be indicated where there exist—deposits of mucus, pus and blood.)
In women, Kreosote has a discharge of bland, yellow leucorrhoea preceding each urination, with frequent desire to urinate.
FEMALE SEXUAL ORGANS. Much excitement is produced. There are pains in the pudenda ; stitches in the vagina proceeding from the abdomen. Intolerable itching in the vagina; the labia swell and become excoriated; and in this condition smart exceedingly during and after urination, which is frequent. The leucorrhoeal discharge is very acrid, excoriating the parts which it touches. The menses come too soon and are too copious, the flow being dark and thick. It is followed by leucorrhoea and by the local symptoms just described. The menses are accompanied by many accessory symptoms, E.G., nausea, deafness, and abdominal colics. The menstrual flow often ceases on the third or fourth day, and after a few hours, or a day, re-appears. In this respect Kreosote resembles Sepia, but the flow of Sepia is scanty and retarded, while that of Kreosote is abundant and anticipates; and the local symptoms and general condition of Sepia are less pronounced, or decidedly different.
The menses are followed by leucorrhoea, which is at first very acrid and dark brown in color, and quite offensive. Nitric acid has a dark flesh-colored discharge after the menses, but it is thin and watery, looking like the washings of meat, and it is not offensive.
In a day or two the leucorrhoea of Kreosote becomes deep yellow, and has a peculiar odor, like that of fresh green corn when it has just been husked.
Along with the leucorrhoea there is much pain in the back, a dragging pain from above downward, a pain as if something would come out, or as after long stooping. This pain is relieved by motion and is worse during rest; just the opposite of the backache of Sepia and Nux vomica, and similar to that of Belladonna.
These series of symptoms have led to the use of Kreosote in prolapsus uteri, in which it has proved of great value. Along with Sepia, Pulsatilla, Stannum, Nux vomica, Belladonna and Podophyllum, it enables us to avoid altogether the use of those miserable make-shifts, pessaries and supporters, which, affording temporary relief, entail so great miseries on those who use them.
The Kreosote cough is noteworthy. It is spasmodic and fatiguing and wheezing, excited by a sensation of a crawling below the larynx, or as from mucus in the bronchi which cannot be dislodged.
There is a copious expectoration of thick, yellow mucus. Along with the cough heaviness upon the chest with dyspnoea, as though the chest were bruised on inhalation. Pain as though the sternum would be crushed in, with stitches here and there. These symptoms have led to the successful use of Kreosote in " nervous asthma."
Lassitude in the limbs, and numbness of the fingers.
The present general use of carbolic acid may give us new symptoms.