PTELIA is a drug which is very useful in the chronic dyspeptic.
You find indications for it in the weak, languid, tired-out dyspeptic. The patients are always rather dull and somewhat muddle-headed. Under stimulation they can become quite lively and cheerful, but whenever the stimulus goes, they relapse into the same dull, rather muddled, depressed state.
They complain of a constant digestive discomfort. Usually described as a felling of a lump in the stomach or in the upper abdomen, but in spite of this, there is very often a sensation of hunger. One of the most marked characteristics is that the dullness and sluggishness is very much ameliorated after food- and, after a meal, they are very often quite lively and cheery. In spite of this mental uplift after a meal, there is often an increase of the abdominal fullness and heaviness.
They often complain that they are very clumsy in their movements. Their fingers feel numb, swollen and stiff, and it is very difficult for them to do any fine work at all.
These patients are sensitive to a stuffy atmosphere, and are better in cool air. They are liable to be much more heavy and muddle-headed in the mornings and, usually, after sleep at any time. And they wake up with a very dirty, unpleasant mouth.
Ptelia patients have a strong aversion to fats of any kind or any rich food, which aggravates their condition, and often they are definitely upset by anything in the nature of a milky pudding, and they have a very marked aversion to meat. With their dirty mouth, they very often have a desire for acids-sour things with a bit of a sting about them that taste clean. Not uncommonly, their major abdominal discomfort comes on about an hour after a meal.
Sometimes there is a certain amount of enlargement and tenderness of the liver, associated with a dull, generalised, bilious headache. The liver is uncomfortable, it may be a little tender when they are lying on the right side; and very often there is a sensation of weight and dragging in the liver region when the patient turns over to the left.
Some of the cases that get Sepia owing to their dull, depressed, negative sort of outlook would be better with Ptelia; and, where there is a marked aversion to meat, it is always worthwhile considering Ptelia as a possibility.