Picric acid has taken its place as perhaps the greatest remedy of all for BRAIN FAG.
One of its queerest symptoms, is that the least study causes burning along the spine. Other remedies noted as having burnings of back or spine are Arsenicum, Phosphorus, Lycopodium, and Zincum. But, while the burning spine of Arsenicum is not qualified, except that the burnings of Arsenicum generally are relieved by heat, the Lycopodium burnings are chiefly between the scapulae (as are those of PHOS. and KALI BIC.): but those of Phosphorus throb, and want to be rubbed. Those of Picric acid, only, are caused by mental exertion. Phosphorus, in poisonings, is like Picric acid in causing fatty degenerations; Phosphorus, especially of liver: Picric acid especially of brain and spinal cord. Everything in Picric acid is worse from study, its great characteristic; this applies not only to the pains of spine, but also those of joints. One may mention, while about it, that the spider poison Theridion, stands in black type for burning in lumbar region; but Theridion is distinguished by extreme sensitiveness to noise and touch.
Picric acid was discovered by a doctor of observation and application, who noticed that the burns of Picric acid are painless: and its chief use has been as a dressing for burns. (Urt., Cantharis)
We have always associated Picric acid with Phosphoric acid: their uses being so similar that one would wonder sometimes which to employ. Let us study, one for all, their distinctions, in order to prescribe one or other with a maximum of good result.
Phosphorus acid. Weakness and debility. Slowness: apathy.
Picric acid. Weak; tired; heavy, mind and body. Easy prostration.
Phosphorus acid. Affects especially MIND; nerves; spine, with paralytic weakness; bones.
Picric. acid. BRAIN; spine; nerves; kidneys.
Both affect sexual organs: Phosphorus acid with weakness; Picric acid with irritation.
Phosphorus acid is worse from fevers; loss of fluids; sexual excesses; fatigue.
Picric. acid. Worse exertion, physical or MENTAL; wet weather.
Phosphorus acid is better from warmth; short sleep; stool.
Picric. acid is better from rest, cold air, cold water; the sun; bandaging.
No two drugs are alike in their action on organs, tissues and, especially on mentality, however much they may seem to be required in like condition. And here, in the matter of exhaustion and debility, there are quite a number of essentially differing drugs to choose from; having regard, naturally, to the cause of the trouble, emotional, mental, physical; so we are giving in this number some suggestive remedies with indications.
Patients are apt to demand a “tonic”. The only real tonic, remember, is the curative drug of like symptoms; but taking into account, as we are finding more and more, the latent dyscrasia of a long-past acute sickness, which must be combated by its own remedy, never hitherto been used to cure.
Another use of Picric acid is for boils in the external ear. Here one thinks also of MERC. and SULPH. But recently in a bad case of recurrent boils in the external auditory meatus, with terrible, incapacitating pain, Morbillinum cleared them up; prescribed on a history of ancient measles.
BLACK LETTER SYMPTOMS
Tired feeling, on least exertion, all over body; with heaviness; excessive languor; no desire to talk or do anything; indifferent to everything; is obliged to lie down; it seems difficult to move limbs; great muscular debility; readily winded by walking up hill; inclined to day sleepiness; poor appetite; general sense of torpidity.
ITALIC, OR CURIOUS SYMPTOMS
Disinclined for mental or physical work; desire to sit still without taking any interest in surroundings.
Headaches; dull throbbing; heavy feeling, or sharp pains.
Worse study, or movement of eyes. Better rest, open air, binding head tightly.
After every severe mental effort, intense throbbing headache; worse base of brain; often with congestion of spine, sexual excitement, etc.
Headaches of overworked business men; or when grief or depressing emotions have resulted in nervous exhaustion. Seat of pain, occipito-cervical region.
Brain fag of literary or business people; slightest excitement mental exertion or overwork brings on headache.
EARS. Furuncular or circumscribed inflammation of meatus
Chronic or sub-acute forms of otitis.
Furuncles in external auditory meatus.
Terrible erections; priapism; satyriasis, etc.
Burning along spine, and very great weakness of legs and back; soreness of all muscles and joints, worse from study.
Heat in lower part spine; aching and dragging (lumbar).
Great weakness of legs, especially left, which trembles; heavy like lead; lifted from floor with difficulty.
Great weakness, hips.
Extremities cold. And heavy.
After severe mental shock from a death, languor, exhaustion; so tired; wants to lie down and sleep all the time, which she would do if not roused.
Weariness, progressing from slight fatigue on motion to complete paralysis.
Paralysis from softening of the cord.
Tingling of lips; crawling as of ants over surface of head.
Pains worse wet weather; better cold air and cold water.
Played out feeling of whole body.
Small furuncles in any part of body, especially in ears.
Coldness: of genitals; down back; of feet.
Restorative of a wasted and worn-out system.
In progressive, pernicious anaemia.
In spinal sclerosis.