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fallibility giving rise to a return of the hemorrhage. Nevertheless, he ventured to tie the two ends of the bleeding vessel of the palmer arch; and although the ligature fell sooner than usual, no hemorrhage followed. IIe has frequently since then tied vessels under analogous circumstances, and has never seen hemorrhage as a result of the fall of the ligature. Although, therefore, this fall takes place earlier (usually about the third or fourth day.) than is the case with a ligature applied to a healthy artery, it is not premature, for bleeding does not follow. Examining the matter experimentally, upon the dead body, M. Nélaton has found that ligatures applied to arteries in a state of suppuration (as in patients who have died after amputation) produce identically the same effects upon the coats of these vessels as upon arteries remote from the seat of inflammation; the same division of the inner coats and preservation of the outer taking place in the two cases. He feels, therefore, perfect confidence in the soundness of the practice, supported as it is by numerous cases that have occurred to him, both in private and hospital practice.-Brit. & For. Med. Chir. Review.
Apoplectic Ophthalmia.-Under this name Dr. Quadri, of Naples, states a fact worthy of attention. It is, that persons predisposed to apoplexy, present ordinarily a species of ophthalmia, characterised by the presence of varicose vessels, muddiness of the eye, and intolerance of astringent collyria a little strong. In the second form the eye secretes a yellowish mucus, very abundant and viscid, and presents a high degree of photophobia: the cornea may then become the seat of abscess, ulcers, or more frequently of pannus. Sometimes also, iritis succeeds to keratitis. The tendency to muddiness, sensibility to astringents, etc, are found in this second form: both forms precede apoplexy one or two years. The importance of these symptoms is equal to the danger of the disease, which must be met in time to be successfully combatted.-[Phil. Med. and Surg. Jour., from Revue Therapeutique.
Facial and Dental Neuralgias.-Doctor Michel Andre recommends the following mixture for prompt relief: Extracts of opium, of Belladonna, and of stramonium, each one part; laurel water twelve parts. A few drops are placed in the meatus auditorius, and cotton is placed in the passage, taking the precaution to hold the head on the opposite side for a few moments, that the fluid may pass freely into the canal.-[1b.
Night Sweats.-Dr. Abbot, of Boston, publishes a series of cases of phthisis to show the decided influence of the oxide of zinc in relieving the night sweats, which are so troublesome in the latter stages of this disease. His favorite prescription is four grains of the oxide of zinc with three of extract of conium, in two pills, at bed-time. Hyoscyamus and opium are sometimes used in combination with the zinc. One of the good effects is the preservation of a soluble state of the bowels. Dr. A. prefers the oxide to the sulphate of zinc.-[Memphis Med. Recorder.
Chloroform in Sea-Sickness -It is said to have been discovered that chloroform in doses of ten to twelve drops, repeated as occasion requires, is a specific for sea-sickness. Out of twenty passengers, eighteen were cured by a single dose, and the two others by two doses each.-[Ib.
Some of the Effects of Alcohol upon the Physical Constitution of Man. By J. P. STEVENS, M. D., of Walthourville, Liberty County, Georgia.
"Alcohol is an inflammable liquor lighter than water, of a warm acrid taste, colorless, transparent and of a pungent, aromatic odor."
It is the product of the fermentation of various grains, vegetables, and fruits. For commercial purposes it is chiefly obtained from grapes, molasses, corn, rye, and cider. The various kinds of wine and malt liquors have, each, a certain proportion of alcohol. The popular notion then, that the use of beer, and malt liquors generally is innocuous, upon the assumption that they contain none of this agent, is erroneous. According to the analysis of Brande, a large number of the most popular wines contain from 12 to 24 per cent. of alcohol; cider, porter, and ale, each from 4 to 8 per cent.; brandy 53, whiskey 54, and gin 57 per cent. Malt liquors differ from what are usually denominated as alcoholic and vinous preparations, in their possessing an intensely bitter, somewhat nutritious and narcotic principle, derived from the hop, which is employed for preserving them. The astringency of this agent, it is said, precipitates the vegetable mucilage, and prevents the fermentation which is apt to follow transportation to a warm climate. All animal and vegetable substances are composed of
four elementary principles in nature-carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, and nitrogen. Four parts of carbon, six of hydrogen, and two of oxygen, form alcohol. As is well known, it is a highly inflammable substance; it resists the process of putrefaction in vegetable and animal substances, and is destitute of an essential element of all organized bodies, namely, nitrogen. Its effects upon the vital organism more especially demands our attention.
According to the quantity introduced into the stomach within a limited time, alcohol acts as a virulent poison, or a local and diffusible stimulant. When taken in large quantities, its sedative effects resemble those of prussic acid. It expends its force upon the nervous system, creating scarcely any antecedent stimulation, but almost immediately extinguishing the innate life-principle. Dr. Percy introduced a considerable quantity into the stomach of a dog, and death followed in two minutes. The post-mortem appearances of the blood, in such circumstances, are analogous to those following death by lightning; it loses its power of coagulating. Alcohol cannot be digested by the stomach. That peculiar digestive solvent in combination with the gastric acids is called pepsin. Now, the presence of alcohol is said to precipitate pepsin; to separate it from the gastric acids, and render it inert. The modus operandi of alcoholic stimulants is by direct imbibition into the blood. The absorbent veins drink them up, and quickly dif fuse them, through the medium of the circulation, into every part of the system.
Alcohol is essentially a brain stimulant; it seems to have a special affinity for this important organ. In moderate quantities, it brightens the poetic talent, quickens the imagination and fancy, but does not appear to improve the reflective faculties, whereby a severe logical, or mathematical deduction is to be made after intense concentration of thought upon a given subject. The first impres sion of alcohol invokes a sensation of perfect self-complacence, as well as of general benevolence. It paralyses the tongue of slander, brightens the flashes of wit and humor, dispels the clouds of gloom and sorrow, demolishes by a single blow the barriers to reputation, fortune and glory, and encircles the future with a bright halo of hope, joy, and perpetual bliss. Another sparkling julep beclouds the mental vision; ideas confused and indistinct run into each other, objects are seen as if veiled with a mist; silence and moroseness, or brawlings and clamor, take the place of
jocund mirthfulness and warm affection, language becomes incoherent and silly, and the faculty of memory is blotted out.
The cerebrellum is next invaded: the motions of the body are unsteady, first one side and then the other, like a water-logged junk, without a helm, it is tossed upon the surging billows, and finally becomes engulphed in the abyss of lethean stupidity. There he lies: the vessels and sinuses of his brain filled with a poison which not only extinguishes every scintillation of intellect, but almost annihilates the faculties of volition and sensation.
In another phase of his career, we see the inebriate the victim of a delusion more torturing than that of beastly degradation. With glaring eyes and ceaseless vigils, he beholds the Prince of Darkness, with clanking chains and fiery imps tracking his every step, and ready to take him a prisoner to those realms, where the devotes of Bacchus render obeisance to their liege lord. The brain has been known to be so completely saturated by constant immersion in alcohol during life, that this fluid has been extracted from its pulp, so that the organ has been brought into a condition capable of resisting the process of putrefaction, and admirably prepared for the scalpel of the demonstrator of anatomy. We will further pursue this subject by inquiring into the validity of a few of, what we deem, popular fallacies concerning the uses of alcohol. Does alcohol contribute to the nutrition of the body, and does it increase man's physical strength and power of endurance? The alimentary principles of food are divided into two classes, the nitrogenous and the non-nitrogenous; or the flesh-producing and the heat-producing. It is a proposition generally conceded by chemical philosophers, that the albuminous tissues are maintained chiefly by those alimentary substances which contain the elements similar to those which enter into their own composition. What are called the nitrogenized compounds are transformed into the tissues of the body. They are called albumen, fibrin, gluten, and casein. Albumen abounds in lean meats, various cereal grains, and a variety of vegetables and grasses.
To the mind of the philosopher, then, truly "all flesh is grass." The muscles which move our limbs, the internal organs which support life, and the very seat of intelligence, owe their existence and integrity to a regular supply of the alimentary principles above mentioned. Lean meats, we all know, are easy of digestion, and become rapidly assimilated to the wants of the animal economy.
Oily and fatty substances are difficult of digestion. They are devoid of albumen. Oil, starch, gum, sugar, and the vegetable acids and fruits, supply us with heat-producing elements. They are incapable of transformation into flesh. How beautifully and signally are the wants of man supplied by the hand of a munificent Providence!
The inhabitants of the polar regions trap the bear and beaver, and lay in store an abundance of oil and blubber, from the whale and other animals. Under the burning heat of the torrid zone, the air is fragrant with the sweet perfume of many flowers, and the senses are ravished with the rich luxuriance of luscious fruits, endlessly diversified in qualities, exactly suited to the physical wants of man.
The non-nitrogenous substances abound in hydrogen and carbon, highly combustible; hence they are appropriated in the animal economy to the sustenance of heat and inspiration. We call them, therefore, the fuel whereby the steam is generated which keeps the machinery in motion. Thus, we see that the bybernating animals, the polar bear, for instance, which remain dormant in winter, become excessively fat during the autumnal months. This deposit is slowly absorbed into the circulation, supplies the lungs with the materials for respiration, and thus it sustains life during the long state of his apparent inebriation. When the warm spring months impart their genial influence, he creeps out of his den a poor, lean, decrepid creature, the mere shadow of his former self. "Currie mentions the case of an individual who was unable to swallow, and whose body lost 100 lbs. in weight during a month."
We are well aware that alcohol is highly inflammable; it being entirely destitute of nitrogen is not convertible into flesh and blood, and, therefore, not a source of nutrition to the body. The Indian hunter, with his limited supply of parched corn and jerked venison, is almost a stranger to disease and fatigue. Through the trackless forest, he pursues the bounding deer, or with relentless ire the blood of his enemy, and yields neither repose to his limbs, nor slumber to his eyes, until avarice or vengeance is fully satis fied. It is said that among the trainers for prize-fighting, three essential points are observed: "1st, the requisite amount of exercise; 2nd, a diet of lean meats and stale bread; and, 3rd, an entire abstinence from alcoholic potations." In an extensive brick-mak