POISONING,CHRONIC.- The treatment of the after effects of poisoning, when the patient has recovered from the acute stage, and the treatment of cases of poisoning induced by unwholesome occupations and insanitary homes, will depend on the aspect each case assumes. The first indication, of course, is to get away from the poison. If it is a trade like painting great care must be taken in washing the hands, so that none of the poison may come in contact with the food. For card-board boxmakers, who suffer from working with arsenical papers, the only thing is to give it up: as the poison is volatile, no amount of washing will protect them from it. Drinking copiously of milk in a measure antidotes its effects. Arsenical wall-papers must be carefully cleaned off and replaced with others containing no arsenic. They must not be covered, as arsenic can find its way through the upper paper; and the same brushes that have been used for damping an arsenical paper for removal must not be used for sizing the wall and pasting the new paper on, as they will be saturated with arsenic and put much of it back on the wall again; also care must be taken to ascertain that the size is free from arsenic, which is not the case in inferior kinds, as the acids used in making them contain arsenic as an impurity. No special colour can be declared free from arsenic, though bright greens are more likely to contain it. The only safe plan is to have all papers tested before they are hung. For this purpose a spirit-lamp, a tested- tube, a piece are all that will be required. Put into the test- tube about a teaspoonful of water, a piece of the clean copper foil, and a few drops of the strong hydrochloric acid. Boil over the spirit lamp. The copper will retain a bright surface. (If it- does not the acid is impure, and must be changed.)
Into the test-tube place a bit of the suspected paper, and again boil. If the copper becomes blackened arsenic is present.
For Chronic ARsenical Poisoning, the following Medicines will be found efficient (every few hours):-
-Indigestion, with pains in the chest, and feeling as of a load after food.
-Chilliness, earthy complexion, loss of flesh, constipation.
-Irritable, uneasy, feverish at night.
-Frequent nausea, vomiting, coldness, great weakness.
-For other effects.
For Chronic Lead Poisoning, painters’ colic, lead paralysis (or drop-wrist), the best medicine is Opium, which should be given three or four times a day persistently.
For the Opium Habit (Which is frequently due to injudicious medical treatment and advice, and the use of the hypodermic injection entrusted to patients or nurses), the first thing to do is to cut off the drug entirely. The patient may be allowed to drink coffee frequently.
Medicines.-(Every hour or two)
Aconite3 -Fever, dry skin, thirst, anxiety, restlessness.
-Craving for the drug, restlessness, irritability, fever coming on every night.
See also TOBACCO, iLL EFFECTS OF.