THE North American Journal of Homeopathy of August and following months, 1888, published a series of case treated by Dr. Bojanus of Moscow, and published in a German journal. The articles were translated from the German by Dr. T.M. Strong.
The first eight of Dr. Bojanus’ cases I have somewhat condensed from his narrative. The rest are given in his own words and are written in the first person. The opening of his article runs as follows:
“If in reference to the various constitutions I give preference to the Hydrogenoid, which I shall endeavour to illustrate by examples, I do this chiefly, first, since this constitution for many years past is the predominant one and affords me more material for illustration, and secondly, because it gives practical proof of what Grauvogl says in his posthumous work concerning the subject. May it encourage the study of the works of the eminent and well-deserving enquirer!
“Ever since I began to apply the study of the doctrine of constitutions to practice, and with eminent success-twenty years ago-only one single case of perfect Oxygenoid Constitution has come to my observation.”
EXAMPLES FROM DR. BOJANUS
“The Carbonitrogenoid indeed often appears together with the Hydrogenoid, but seldom alone, and presents in this fashion an extremely difficult, often enigmatically mixed up, therapeutic subject. Almost all of the cases mentioned here belong to the period of time previous to my acquaintance with the posthumous work of Grauvogl; the practical results, of which but a small portion is communicated here, are based chiefly on the study of Grauvogl’s Text-book and familiar remarks which I have gathered during my acquaintance and conversation with him.”
Dr. Bojanus’ remarks on the frequent combination and complication of the Hydrogenoid and Carbo-nitrogenoid Constitutions I can fully corroborate, but for all that, the three-fold division can be of great assistance in the selection of remedies. Bojanus endorses what Grauvogl says about the accessory circumstances characterising the constitutions, but the “Constitution” itself is not sufficiently clearly characterised in its exterior manifestations to admit of an exact description of it. “But in reference to the various materials constitution the diet it will be found invariably that aquatic plants and animals, fruits and vegetables largely containing aqueous material-cucumbers, melons, mushrooms, moreover, milk in every form, eggs even cooked soft; as also a moist atmosphere, humidity in dwelling apartments, even accidental and transitory baths, warm or cold, drinks of water or of liquids containing much water; rain, cold, storms, whose approach many persons of this sort feel and foretell in advance, not only may aggravate the disease (in a Nitrogenoid the reverse takes place-t the approach of the during the tempest they feel better), but may also cause a relapse after a disappearance of several months.
“After a complete cure even, the diet restriction should be followed for a further year at least. Among patients of this class some will be able to digest some of the forbidden articles and not others without detriment to their health. Some can take salt-water fish and not fresh-water fish. Some can take eggs and milk but no fish. Most are decidedly averse to flesh meat.”
Bojanus gives a very graphic description of the terribly unhygienic condition of Moscow and its two rivers in his day, which mightily fostered the hydrogenoid state in the inhabitants. Filth and ice in winter, dust in summer, floods in spring, and smells all the year round re about the sum of his description. It is not to be wondered at that intermittents are among the endemic deceases he had to treat, and “intermittent fever” and “hydrogenoid constitution” are frequently more or less identical.
I will now give a brief account of Bojanus’ cases:
Insanity with Intermittent Fever. Veratrum and
O.K., 23, a young lady of an impoverished noble family, whose mother was an energetic lady of strong will, scrofulous in childhood and often subject to neuralgia, dying after her tenth confinement of typhus. The daughter, who was an exact likeness of her mother and very lean and pale, had recently filled a position in Moscow to which she had to make a long journey every day to her office, and lodged in a cold, damp, unwholesome house, where even the bedclothes were hardly ever dry. In childhood she had scrofulous inflammation of the eyes, at thirteen prolonged tinea capitis with large swelling of the neck and its glands. In her fifteenth year the menses appeared for the first time, scanty and always with pains in the abdomen. Three years later leucorrhoea appeared with continual chilliness.
In July, 1857, she left Moscow and went to her father’s house twelve miles in the country. At the time Bojanus was called in, August 6th, symptoms of insanity appeared and soon intermittent fever, two paroxysms a day, 10 a.m. to 12 noon, and 8 p.m. to 12 midnight. She was sleepless, continually singing, jumping out of bed and walking up and down the room. There was short interruption of the mania on August 10th; but the fever continued to return twice a day, and for eight days there was complete sleeplessness, and the singing went on continuously for twenty-four hours on eight occasions, followed by complete aphonia. Pains in the left hypochondrium with enlargement of the spleen were added. Veratrum 3 was given night and morning and Arsen. 3, every three hours during the day. Under these there was steady improvement. By the middle of October the insanity had disappeared, and by November 14th she was well and the remedies were discontinued.
Then followed a relapse brought on by the use of water During this day, November 14th, she ordered the floor of her room to be scrubbed and as it was not oiled it retained water enough to keep it moist for a long while. Without any apprehension of evil she spent a part of the day and the whole night in that room. At 11 p.m. on the following day she began to complain of headache and pains in the left hypochondrium. There returned also chilliness, weeping, outbursts of temper with terrible excitement and despair about her condition with desire for a speedy death. Veratrum and Arsen. were immediately given in hourly alternation. The next paroxysm appeared at the same hour but was very. light, with some sensation of chilliness but without any other inconvenience, and after the 18th all trouble had ceased.
Intermittent fever in the form of Congestion of the Brain. Atropine and Nat. sulph., later Nux and Ipecac.
Z.B., 6, of cheerful disposition, having had no severe illness, was taken ill 7 a.m. one morning in January, 1871. She awoke screaming, tossing wildly in bed, vacant, glassy stare, pupils dilated, face flushed, pulse slow. Talked absently, imagined strange things, could not be quieted. This lasted an hour and a half, when she fell asleep. Slept till morning, when she awoke and remembered all that had happened. Gentle perspiration set in and she became bright and cheerful. The following day and night there was no complaint, but the second night the same symptoms re-appeared. Atropine 6x, and Nat. sulph. 2x, hourly in alternation. Paroxysms recurred but with less intensity. She always remembered what had happened on awaking. After the third night there was no return.
The following year she had scarlet fever in a mild form. All went well till during the desquamation period fever set in. She did not complain of her head or stomach. Thirst increased, sleepless, and when she did sleep muttered and seemed restless. Was constipated and feverish. Aconite alone and later Bellad. were without effect. Then careful observations showed that there were intermissions and Bojanus concluded that it was the old intermittent that he had to deal with. Arsen. every three hours was given, water was forbidden as drink unless mixed with wine. From this time the fever diminished and in ten days she was well, but Arsen. was continued at increased intervals until the twenty- first day.
After this Z.B. had good health for several months when it was noticed that she had a short but continual cough while sleeping. It lasted several nights but ceased between 4 and 5 a.m. cham., Nux vomica, Hyoscyamus and several other remedies were given without effect before Bojanus was called in. He then recognised that it was merely another form of the original complaint. There was rough bronchial breathing in the left side and posteriorly. Nux. and Ipecac. were given every three hours alternately with the anti-hydrogenous diet and in a week she was free from cough. At fourteen she had measles lightly, she menstruated for the first time and since then was in perfect health. She was twenty- two when Bojanus wrote.
Intermittent in the form of Meningitis. Atropine 6x and Nat. sulph.
Adele W., 10, tall, slender, pale, hollow-chested, delicate, was out walking one clear day in March, 1881, and on returning home suddenly complained of being sick. Her symptoms were: raging headache, severe chill followed by intense heat, intolerance of light, very nervous, nausea, vomiting first food then bile. The following night very restless, dozed a little but on awaking always had headache, at times slightly delirious.