ARTEMESIA ABSINTHIUM. WORMWOOD-ABSINTHE.
(Absinthium-auivos, apsinthos or apsinthia, wormwood). This better, aromatic shrub, which grows wild in europe, and has become naturalized here, has been used in medicine from ancient time. Our knowledge of its effects is mostly of its toxicological symptoms as it has had only a fragmentary proving by Dr. H. P. Gatchell.
The autopsies on animals poisoned by abstain the showed great congestion of the cerebro-spinal vessels, of the meanings of the brain, and extreme hyperaemia of the medulla oblongata.
Absinthe drinkers suffer from a peculiar form of epilepsy, which has received the name of “absinthe epilepsy,” the most prominent symptoms being vertigo, illusions of sight and hearing, trembling and numbness of the extremities and epileptiform convulsions, which Allen says, “begin in the face and extend to the body and limbs. A large number of these convulsions are apt to occur in rapid succession for a few hours, coming on with screaming.”
Allen also tells us, although the clinical history of absinthe is very imperfect, it has been used for prolonged spasms i children, due perhaps to gastric irritation (36), and for epileptiform convulsions (66) in older persons.
In a lecture on this remedy, Allen spoke of putting a drop of the tincture on the tongue and epileptic attack, as it would modify the convulsion.