TARTAR EMETIC-A DOUBLE TARTRATE OF POTASSIUM AND ANTIMONY.
Do not call this Stibium. We do not use metallic antimony, although Hahnemann, who contributed some symptoms to Antimonium tart., says: “It is very much to be desired, that also the pure metallic antimony may be proved most carefully as to its pure effects, as we may expect of it much help, as yet unknown, and of a kind differing from that of the sulphuret of antimony; even as arsenic is different in its effects from the cinnebar, each one having its own usefulness as a medicine” (Chr. Dis.).
Personally I prefer the name Antimonium, tart. for out use, and would leave tartar emetic for the old school, they giving it to cause and we to cure a condition almost exactly almost exactly similar to that which it produces.
Tartar emetic “is a specific and not merely an irritant emetic” (Bartholow).
It increases the secretions generally, but produces nausea and vomiting, profound depressions of the heart, pulse and temperature,”paleness of the face, coldness of the surface (sometimes preceded by a very temporary rise of temperature), great muscular prostration. When the quantity is sufficient to produce lethal symptoms, we have epigastric pain, vomiting and purging, shrunken features, cold breath and cyanosis” (Bartholow).
Weakness and faintness, with prostration (156) and cold, clammy sweat, especially on the forehead (185), continual nausea and vomiting, or straining to vomit are the common accompaniments when we prescribe Antimonium tart.
The face, as we see it, when calling for the remedy, is pale and sunken or livid and cyanotic (207), two opposite conditions, but as has been shown, both produced with physiological doses.
The tongue is red and dry through the center (192).
While in gastric and intestinal troubles, per se, we may not give Antimonium tart. very often, it has some symptoms very similar to those of Veratrum v.
In addition to the continual nausea, and vomiting or efforts to vomit, with cold sweat on the forehead (185) with great prostration (156) and trembling, we have eructations tasting like rotten eggs (182), disgust for food and presence or absence of thirst.
We have violent colic, with shifting of flatus, pains tearing from above downward, as if the bowels would be cut to pieces, and perhaps diarrhoea.
The stools ate profuse, thin, slimy and offensive, grass- green in color (59), preceded by sharp, cutting colic, and accompanied by vomiting and cold sweat (208).
If we neglect to use Antimonium tart. in the intestinal tract, we may have a chance at the patient for some other trouble; but if we forget it in the respiratory tract, there may be no patient for us to treat, for it will often help us out of a desperate situation.
Many lesions of the respiratory organs call for the remedy from simple to severe, but in them all we have the drug picture of increased secretions, lowered temperature (156), weak pulse, nausea and cold perspiration (185).
It is useful for asthma (19), worse 3 A.M. (21) and for asthmatic breathing, with necessity to sit up in bed (24) and relief from expectoration, and for threatening suffocation, with wheezing, rattling and cyanosis, inability to clear the lungs and dyspnoea on falling asleep (24).
In oedema of the lungs (29), calling for the remedy, there would be great dyspnoea and cyanosis (207), and probably dilated heart, with weak, but rapid, fluttering pulse (109).
It is often needed in bronchitis and broncho-pneumonia (151), especially in children and old people (147), with rattling of mucus (45) which accumulates in the bronchial tubes and seems to fill up the air-passages, causing great shortness of breath and cold sweat from the effort in breathing; the child cries with the cough (41) and always coughs on getting angry (41).
Antimonium tart. is frequently indicated in the third stage of pneumonia, the stage of resolution.
When resolution takes place rapidly, without corresponding reabsorption, we have a very pronounced picture of the remedy, with the loose cough, lowered temperature, increased pulse, dyspnoea, cold perspiration (185) and prostration.
In the pneumonia of old people, or those greatly debilitated, we must think of the remedy when in addition to the rattling of mucus in the and the cold perspiration, there is threatening paralysis of the lungs (30).
The cough of Antimonium tart. is loose, moist and rattling (45), but in spite of this, the expectoration is scanty in proportion to the amount one hopes to raise, and the cough is not only disappointing but very exhausting as well.
This happen in about this way; the mucus seems loose and you can heart it rattle in the chest and throat as the patient breathes and a few short coughs bring it to the throat all ready to be expectorated with just one more effort. The patient has felt qualmish from the first and for that reason has not dared to put much force into it, even if his strength would permit, and is now conscious that if he gives that last cough it will surely cause vomiting and he sinks back on his pillow discouraged, prostrated and in a cold sweat (185), with the mucus still to be raised.
Hering speaks of Antimonium tart. for asphyxia neonatorum (19), the child “pale, breathless” and with rattling of mucus in the chest. He also refers to it “to relieve the death `rattle’,” where it is often of great benefit. Here it may be given hypodermically.
Tartar emetic, says Bartholow, when “applied to the skin by friction, excited a follicular inflammation, succeeded by a papule, a vesico-pustule, a surrounding inflammation with indurated base, a central umbilication, and finally desiccation, terminating in a brownish scab” and the resulting scar. “These antimony pustules are very similar to those of vaccine or variola.”
Antimonium tart. is of value in acne (14) and other pustular eruptions, often umbilicated and with deep red, areola, “leaving stains and poc-like cicatrices” (Dearborn).
It seems to be of undoubted value in small-pox, including a low type of the disease, and Hughes says that it is almost invariably used by him in small-pox, as he considers that it lessens the amount of pitting (170). In order to lessen the pitting it must be used early.
The fact of the similarity between the scar produced by tartar emetic and vaccine, had lead some opponents of the regulation method to inoculate by means of tartar emetic so that they could say that their children had been vaccinated and point to the scar for corroboration.
Kali sulph. is said to be incompatible with Antimonium tart.
I use Antimonium tart. 3rd.