Aconitum napellus, or A. stoerkianum. Natural order: Ranunculaceae. The monkshood, though cultivated in America, is a native of Europe. A tincture is made from the whole plant, gathered at the time of flowering
Aconite in small doses accelerates the heart’s action, and causes a rise of temperature; then follow alternate chill and fever, tumultuous action of the heart, sweat and great weakness. From larger doses, paralysis of the heart, feeble pulse, cold sweat, paralysis of sensory and motor nerves vomiting and purging, convulsions and death. Mental distress is exceedingly characteristic; it is produced by all doses, in all cases of poisoning, in all provings, and even in experiments on animals; this peculiar anxiety distinguishes Aconite from all other drugs. The tingling and numbness, which are experienced even from small doses, and the neuralgias, affecting particularly the upper portion of the body, are likewise characteristic. Aconite causes only functional disturbance; there is scarcely any evidence of power to produce tissue change; its action is brief, and shows no marked periodicity.
Groups for Study and Comparison.-Other species of Aconite, Veratrum (and liliaceous plants, such as Convallaria, Adonis, Colchicum), Digitalis, Camphor (Opium), Arsenicum, Iodine.
Antidotes. Belladonna, Nux vomica, Digitalis, camphor (each in part only).
Lies on l. side (Spongia); on back, with l. hand flat under head during morning sleep. Cannot lie on r. side or back (Nux v.).
Jaundice. Swelling of whole body. Cracking of joints.
Convulsions; alternating with relaxation; tetanic (See. corn.); convulsions, with distortion of eyes clenched jaws, body rigid and bent backward, limbs distorted (Jasmin). Convulsions, with eyes drawn upwards, fists, clenched across the throat, grating of the teeth, ropy saliva and involuntary discharges. Convulsions of face and upper extremities, relieved by vomiting. Convulsions at intervals of 20 minutes, ushered in with a shuddering noise; arms became rigid and raised above head, which was thrown back, and lower limbs extended rigidly, features distorted to one side or other, eyes closed, no general convulsions, face pale, consciousness unimpaired, could not speak owing to spasms of respiratory muscles, during intervals spoke well. Falls down insensible, icy cold, imperceptible pulse, hands and arms fixed in front of chest, face pale, lips blue, eyes sunken, twitching of eyeballs (Secalec.) Limbs strongly flexed, with cold, clammy sweat, eyes turned upward, followed by general relaxation, aphonia and vomiting. Tetanus, with clenched fists, arms drawn backward and flexed, with opisthotonos. Convulsions of lower extremities, with clenched, cold, numb hands and slow pulse. Limbs drawn inward, thumbs clenched into palms (Hyosc.). Legs in constant motion, with cold sweat on face; cracking of joints.
Pricking and electric shocks through whole body. Hysterical conditions (Ignatia, Platina). Twitching; of tendons (Belladonna, Hyoscyamus, Opium, Stramonium,); of muscles of face, fingers and toes; attempting by jerks to change her position in bed. Threw himself about violently, and attempted to bite attendants.
Trembling (Lachesis); anxious. Trembling like a boiling and seething, with coldness. Nervousness; on falling asleep, and fear; and agitation (Argentum nit., Tarent., Thea.).
Stitches here and there (Bryonia); electric, in forehead, back, sides of chest, back of hands and in other parts; flying, here and there in evening, in ribs, abdominal parietes and joints (Puls). Stinging or stinging-burning pain in many parts, as if in skin (Nux v. ), sometimes with heaviness, numbness or swelling; tearing stitches in nearly all joints alternately. Lancinating P., especially in joints (Kali carb.)
Drawing, wandering tearing, mostly alternating with heart symptoms. Pain, in joints; P. around waist. Drawing P., here and there; throbbing, here and there; wandering, sometimes in nape, loins, intestines, or right groin, or one or another joint (Pulsatilla) Drawing, here and there in joints. Rheumatic P. Bruised sensations: Constriction. General oppression. Malaise.
Swollen feeling over almost whole body, especially l. side, changing to a numb feeling, with bruised feeling in muscles and pressing or bruised feeling in bones, also with the swollen feeling changing to numbness there is a bruised feeling in ribs upper part of chest and arms, and a crampy feeling about heart, Swollen feeling in many parts (Rhus, Spigelia), generally with shuddering-cold or rigor.
Soreness and stiffness of all muscles (Rhus). General sore, tired feeling (Arnica, Baptis., Rhus.)
Sensitive to fresh air (Dulcamara, Kali carb.). Sensitiveness of whole body to touch (Belladonna, China, Nux v., Spigelia).
Restlessness and tossing about (Arsenicum)
Weakness (Gelsem.) morning on waking, (>) on rising; from walking and talking; walking, (<) ascending stairs; with sleepiness; in joints, with unsteadiness; of muscles and ligaments so that he could not sit nor stand unsupported; intermittent, with insensibility nor stand unsupported; intermittent, with insensibility. Depression with faintness, livid face and feeble pulse (Digitalis). Nervous prostration. Laziness. Collapse (Secalec.). Faintness, on attempting to sit up (Carbo vegetabilis, Gelsem), evening when urinating, with rush of blood to head; after urinating; with whirling around of everything and with cold sweat on hands, with shivering.
Numbness; with tingling (Platina, Rhus., Secalec.).
Crawling, like a mixture of formication, prickling and tickling, first on tip of tongue, then over upper surface of tongue and lips, extending to posterior part of mouth, then beginning in tips of fingers, then in face, above all in suprahyoid region and on chin, then in cheeks and tip of toes, on perineum, chest, abdomen, and lastly on back, more violent in former regions,(<) change of temperature.
Heaviness (Nux v., Rhus). Leaden of body from shoulders downward, with pressure from all sides and from above, seeming to make the body, except head and neck, smaller. Feeling as if the bedclothes were a dreadful weight.
Paralytic condition; in l., then r. side. Loss of equilibrium.
Clinical The convulsions arrested or prevented by Aconite are not dependent upon a chronic constitutional taint, but result from a sudden nervous shock, such as fright, or are of recent origin, as in the puerperal state; the face is red, hot and sweaty, with other symptoms as above. In hysterical spasms, neuralgias, congestions, haemorrhages, and effects of shock from injury or fright, the terrible mental distress characteristic of the drug must be the guide to its successful use; also after exposure to sun or great heat, with a plethoric appearance, some anaesthesia or great sensitiveness to touch, Aconite, may be used always with mental anxiety and acute sensitiveness to pain. The pains are usually acute, sticking and often associated with or followed by numbness. Restlessness and agonized tossing about are essential in a case requiring Aconite.
Aggravation, in evening; in close room (Iodium); on rising from lying down (Bryonia, Opium, Dig,.) Amelioration, in open air (bry Plat); in cool air (Bryonia, Opium, Pulsatilla); after eating (Puls); after watery stool; after sweat (Rhus); after vomiting (Digitalis, Secalec).; after drinking (Cedron) after wine or coffee (transient)
Raving, with jumping out of bed (Belladonna); intermittent. Delirium; chattered childish, nonsense (Hyosc.); said he was dying, with restless jerking and jumping about (Arsenicum). Mixture of dullness and excitement.
Activity of mind. Clearness. (Clairvoyance.) Buried in thought. Occupied with one subject. Disinclined to think; to read. Distraction. Inability to think; stupid, also in evening, or with fretfulness, from tobacco smoke. Unsteadiness of thought. Confusion. Coma, eyes half closed, pupils insensible (Opium). Memory active (during excitement); impaired (reaction). Hallucinations, that his head was three times its natural size, that his mental operations transpired in the pit of his stomach. Anxiety; with the shivering inconsolable; as of an impending misfortune. Agony. Fear. Apprehension. Dread, of misfortune; of approaching death (Arsenicum, Opium, Platina); of staggering and falling. Salicitude. Despair (Arsen); plaintive cries. Sadness. (Ignatia); from music, which is unendurable and goes through every limb (Tarent); weeping. Whining. Piteous howlings (Verat). Vexation about trifles (Nux v.). Complaints and reproaches, often about trifles. Misanthropic. Quarrelsome (Nux v.). Fretful Restless, variable mood (Ignatia, Platina). Impatience. Hurry in all actions, in speech (Argentum nitricum, Lilium tigrinum). Gaiety; happiness inclined to sing and dance. Apathy; disinclined to talk; indifferent; desire to be alone (Platina). Anthropophobia (Aurum). Obstinacy.
Clinical In delirium, with ravings about death, hot face and head; effects of fright; fear of crowds or of death, with anguish, etc.
Sticking pain (Caps. (<) rest); jerking sticking, especially in forehead;l sticking on coughing (Arnica, Carbo vegetabilis). Shooting pulsating. Aching; on stooping (<) mental effort; (<) speaking. A., as from a band (Gelsemium, Mercurius sol.); as from a hot iron band; as if eyes would fall out; as if brain were pressing out; as if brain were raised here and there; bruised,(<) motion, drinking and speaking. A., burning, as if brain were agitated by boiling water. A., constrictive and pressing, especially in upper part of forehead, (<) light and noise,(>) sleep, with obscured vision; as if skull were compressed from all sides (Anacardium), especially in l. orbit; constrictive pain over whole skull, especially l. side and over l. eye, (>) cool hand. A in head and face, extending over body. Neuralgic pain, then in lower extremities.
Compression, as if aponeurosis were too tight; as from a vise; in evening, at times worse in l.orbit; recurring at same hour. Fulness (Glo.), with erratic pain in r. supraorbital, temporal and frontal regions. Congestion; sudden and frequent, with anxiety, then rigor over back. Apoplectic. Heaviness; in morning, with vertigo; with ringing in ears, (<) yawning, dizzy, especially in frontal region, with nausea and sinking in pit of stomach, also on stooping. Drawing, especially in temporal muscles and behind ears; feeling as if something were drawn out of head, causing lids to be drawn up. Confusion; morning on waking; after every effort; while eating; in evening with pressure in forehead; forenoon, with flushes of heat and vertigo; (<) motion; as after intoxicating drinks. Emptiness; morning, as after intoxication. Lightness. Head feels smaller to hand, with warmth of head. Pulsation (Belladonna, Ferrum, Glo.); fine, here and there. Waving and shaking of brain. Roaring in head and ears, (<) reading. Tingling, benumbed. Feeling as if head were forcibly turned around.
Morning on waking (Lachesis); forenoon, with confusion, when walking, changing in house to stupefaction; driving or walking; on rising up (Bryonia, Phosphorus); on rising, with heavy headache in temporal muscles above ears, nausea and gush of cold sweat; on rising, with flickering before eyes, roaring in ears, pain in head and face, nausea and weakness; when standing; on stooping (Sulphur); stooping, with vision of sparks and fog; after walking, with reeling; vertigo aggravated, open air, after dinner, shaking head, when there is blackness before eyes, stooping with nausea, rising from a seat (Bryonia); (>) walking and sitting, by deep breathing. Vertigo, with distraction of mind; with headache; obscuration of vision; feeling as if about to fall; staggering especially to r.; vertigo, with feeling that his legs were going away from him. Everything goes around in a circle. Vertigo, to falling.
Stitches in r.; after eating, extending to temple; alternating with same in occiput; nauseating over orbits, extending to upper jaw; stitches at times pulsating or pressive-aching, on walking, (>) sitting. Drawing; drawing pressive feeling in nerve trigeminus; tense drawing in trigeminus, then shooting, wandering, intermittent, then constant pain, sometimes pressure. Crepitation (as of gold tinsel bent back and forth), and in temples and nose. Aching; morning, on waking; night; (<) evening; over eye; r. half; especially over r. superciliary ridge, with dread of jar by riding; in spot above 1. superciliary ridge, morning after waking, (>) after a nap; l. eminence; in sinciput; forehead and occiput, (<) towards evening. Contractive. In r. protuberance, extending towards orbit, with flushes of heat, especially in face and ears; involving r. eyebrow. Out pressing. Stupefying, (<) towards 6 P.M. Wedge-like pressing asunder, near l. brow, (<) in room.
Feeling as of a board before forehead. Corrugated between brows. Squeezing; in bones, with sick feeling as if madness would ensue; over nose, with feeling as if she would lose her reason, (<) walking in open air. Nailed-up feeling in a warm room. Swelling; swollen feeling, (<) 1. Tension; squeezing, tensive pain behind orbits. Fulness (Gloninum); in sinuses, with heaviness and feeling as if something would come out, the latter also on stooping. Heaviness; in sinciput, with numbness. Pulsation towards both eyes; l.side, with attacks of blows in r. side. Confusion; r.; dizzy, in r., when walking in open air.
Stitches in r. muscles; stitches in l. temple, (<) entering house, with drawing pain; stitches from (<) entering house, with drawing pain, stitches from temple into head; twitching stitches in 1. Tearing in l. Drawing from muscles into external meatus, causing tense feeling there. Aching; l.; r. (Sang); behind r. mastoid process; bursting (Gloninum); as if compressed with screws; as from pressure of a thumb behind r. ear; pressing out, evenings, with fulness in forehead, pricking and biting in lips, as in beginning of coryza, with flushes of heat; stupefying, drawing, pressing- inward in l.; shooting pulsating; neuralgic in r. Tingling; with sense of enlargement of forehead and disturbance of vision. Pulsation of arteries during chill. Contraction of muscles. Swelling. Swollen feeling, (<) l.
Stitches (Bry); aching; forenoon, evenings; nightly; (>) washing with cold water; light, (<) stooping and moving head; (<) motion; then extending to forehead, where it caused heaviness and fulness; aching on both sides; aching, with tension, aching, as from a cap, also (>) motion in open air; A., extending towards temporal region, (<) stooping; A., as from a weight. Heaviness, compression extending to whole head.
Jerking, shooting, drawing, tearing pain in r. side of head superiorly. Aching, in l. side of head; evening and night; (>) cold water; in l. side, as if compressed. Heaviness in bones; heaviness in r. side of head, with pressing out. Semi-lateral drawing in head.
Stitches; in bone; alternating with same in root of nose. Twitching, tearing. Aching; (<) stooping, and in forehead; acute about base of brain and in back of neck, with spasms in arms; distending; by fits and starts; twitching. Injected feeling in brain. Drawing numbness in l. Weight.
Bristling of hair on vertex; scalp feel as if the hair stood on end, also in spots. Stitches under scalp. Sensation as if swollen and numb. Sensitiveness to touch; in spots, and to cold air, (<) strong wind. Sensation as if some one drew him up by the hair. Formication; (>) heat. Creeping in l. side as from a brush. Tickling on touching hair, especially on vertex. Itching.
Clinical The headache associated with fever is a hot, full, pulsating, bursting pain, with flushed face, etc., reminding one of Belladonna; the neuralgia of scalp and skull varies usually sharp shooting along nerves (Spigelia), drawing tense, numb (Verbasc.), or pulsating (Glon). The anterior portion of head is usually involved. The peculiar mental distress accompanies all the headaches (clinically).
Bloodshot. Yellowish. Protruding. Dull, with blue rings. Expressionless. Wandering look. Glaring. Staring. Glassy. Sparkling. Distorted,. Turned upward. Twitching-pain; (<) looking down or around, with heat in them; pain as if crushed; P. anteriorly as if it would be pushed out when lids are opened (Sanguinaria), extending to supraorbital region and interior of brain. Sharp P. through r., leaving an ache. Feeling as if they would drop from their sockets. Painful inflammation. Swollen feeling. Constriction. Tightness across eyes and nose. Burning; burning alternately in each; burning and pressure in l., and over brow. Warmth and undulation, with half-closing of lids and feeling as if it were too dark to read in a well-lighted room. (Cold feeling in open air.) Sensitiveness to air. Itching.
Lachrymation; when coughing; (<) evening and night.
Fine sticking in r. Enlarged feeling as if coming out of orbits and stretching lids (Natrum mur., Par.). Pressure; in l. ball and r. orbital region; as if pressed into orbit; upper part feels as if pressed out of orbit on moving it, (>) stooping, changing to dull pain on bending head backward; pressure in front, not quite superficial part, sometimes stinging or burning.
Contraction; then dilatation; alternating with dilatation. Mobility, then dilatation, with dim vision, and blinking on looking at bright objects Dilatation; r. nearly oval; l. irregularly polygonal. Insensible to light.
Swollen. Twitching. Blinking on looking at strongly lighted objects. Closed convulsively. Will not keep closed, so that there is sleeplessness. Burning. Itching. Heaviness. Hard red swelling of r. upper, with tension, (<) morning. Pressure alternately in each upper. L. upper feels as if long, heavy and hanging down paralyzed. Dryness of upper. Pain deep- seated in r. inner canthus. Sensation of sand in l. inner canthus. Margins sore, red and inflamed (Apis). Irritation of margins. Itching on margins, with smarting.
Injected; especially towards inner canthus; of lids and ball red.
Sudden compressive pain in upper margin of r. Shooting in supraorbital ridge, branching across forehead to scalp, to r. temple, cheek, and into some teeth, (<) pressure and towards evening, when there was constant cough, followed by swelling of ridge. Tearing in l. margin; tearing in l., with constriction as if ball would be pressed outward. Pain. Tension.
Acute. Confused. Dazzled. Dim; with vertigo. Lost. Weak. Amblyopia. Diplopia. Photophobia. Flickering; in evening on going from half dark room into street, worse at short than long distances. Black floating spots. Sparks. White bright spot, changing to straw color, then the whole field of vision became lilac-hued, followed by a bright azure spot. All sorts of hallucinations.
Clinical In the first stage of acute inflammations of various tissues of the eye and its appendages, with heat, dryness and sharp pain, before any exudation has taken place. Acute inflammation from foreign bodies, etc. In acute aggravations of chronic disease (catarrh, trachoma, etc.). In recent paralysis from cold. In ciliary and orbital neuralgia. Acute symptoms from overstrain of muscles.
Stitches in l. in forenoon, with twinges and stoppage; acute stoppage in r. meatus externus; drawing stitches in l. Tearing in l. Pain; in r., l.; below r., burning P. shooting into l.; drawing P. Burning, itching and darting when yawning, (<) in evening and in open air, (>) after eating. Feeling as if a drop of hot water were in l. Stoppage; of r.; stopped feeling in l. Tickling in r. as from a worm in it. Swollen sensation in bone around external ear. Pricking burning in palate, throat, and Eustachian tube,(<) swallowing. Stiffening sensation in r. Eustachian tube, compelling swallowing.
Hearing impaired. Sensitiveness to every noise (Belladonna, Mur ac., etc.). Buzzing before ears, then faintness. Humming. Humming hissing. Ringing; with yawning. Roaring; 1; (<) reading. Seething. Singing. Loud noises.
Clinical Inflammation of external parts,. even involving the tympanum, with fever, excruciating pain, caused by a draught of cold air. Neuralgia, involving ear and parts about it.
Stitches at root alternating with same in occiput. Pain at base between orbits (Ignatia, Kali. bi.). Stupefying compression at root. Constriction. Obstructing in r. nostril. Tightness across nose and eyes. Raw feeling in posterior nares. Dry feeling in posterior nares. Sneezing frequently; with pain in abdomen; with shooting in chest; sneezing interrupted by pain in l. chest. Desired to sneeze, but could not. Clear fluid flows from nose; hot fluid drops out, frothy mucus from nose and mouth; profuse discharge with stuffing in head; discharge of thick yellow mucus Coryza; fluent, beginning with violent chill about midnight, then copious sweat; severe coryza, with lachrymation; Epistaxis (Cact. mil.). blows out bright blood mornings (Bryonia). Great sensibility of olfactory nerves (Belladonna); bad smells have a powerful effect.
Clinical Incipient coryza, nares hot and dry, or with hot fluid discharge, with chills and fever. Haemorrhage of bright, hot blood, with anxiety (Ham, Secale, Phosphorus, Croc., blood dark.).
Dusky. Pale; and anxious. Red; with tension; flushed over cheek bones, otherwise pallid. Livid. Livid purple, with white blotches. Sunken. Expressionless. Expression of agony; of astonishment; of anxiety; of fright, and imbecility; heavy, depressed; hippocratic; restless; pinched. Swelling. Distortion; (<) change of temperature. Twitching. Pain; creeping, on cheeks; P. in zygomatic process as from an internal ulcer; pressive and digging pain in chin. Lower and anterior part feels compressed form both sides. Contracted feeling in muscles and numb, heavy, paralytic feeling in whole face. Drawing in cheeks, upper jaw and forehead. Distorted feeling; as if a muscle bulged out, then as if whole jaw were thrust to one side, or as if the lower jaw were pushed up or raised into the cavity of the mouth. Swollen feeling; (<) l. side; of cheeks. Tingling; benumbed. Rigidity. Numbness; of cheeks and tongue, extending over shoulder and back and down the arms, then hyperaesthesia.
Lips.- Black. Blue Pale. Swollen. Pain. Feeling as if swollen. Inflammation. Burning; extending to stomach. Heat. Feeling as if drawn up. Dryness; then in mouth, with heat rising from chest to head. Tickling. Tingling. Numbness; extending to stomach. Swollen feeling.
Jaws dropping. Involuntary closure with salivation Trismus; in paroxysms. Shooting jerks, in lower. Rigidity. Aching of lower; in joint on chewing; burning aching of lower; in joint on chewing; burning aching in upper; piercing as if they would fall off; pressing on lower. Drawing in lower with stinging. Creeping and in tongue, with burning, so that the teeth seemed to wabble. Tingling in angles and down side of neck. Leaden heaviness of upper. Numbness. Dead feeling in lower. Paralysis of lower.
Clinical The expression in fever is flushed and anxious, in neuralgia pinched and suffering, in tetanus drawn and rigid. The neuralgia pinched and suffering, in tetanus drawn and rigid. The neuralgia commonly cured results from cold, is of recent origin and usually associated with tingling and numbness (Verbascum). Several cases of tetanus have been cured.