(The seed of the Ignatia amara.)
(One grain of the pulverised(If the mortar is kept constantly Standing in very hot water, and thus maintained at a moderately high temperature, then this seed (as is the case with nux vomits) may be easily reduced to a fine powder without diminution of ire medicinal power.) seed is first brought.to the million-fold (third) trituration in the way taught in the introduction to arsenic, and of this one grain after being dissolved, is brought by means of 27 diluting phials to the thirtieth potency (X).
The characteristic peculiarities of this very powerful vegetable substance, as far as they are known to me, are pointed out in the foot notes.
On account of the alternating actions, that follow one another very rapidly, which it excites, it is particularly suitable for acute diseases, and for a considerable number of these, as may be seen from the symptoms corresponding in similarity to symptoms of disease frequently met with in daily life. It is therefore very properly regarded as a medicine created for great usefulness (polychrest).
Its action is usually exhausted in a few days; yet there are constitutions and states of the body where it cannot effect any evacuation, and in such cases I have sometimes observed its action last nine days. It is suitable for but few cases of chronic disease, and then only with the intermediate employment of some other suitable medicine of mote persistent action.
In its employment it sometimes happens, which is seldom the case with other medicines, that where the first dose has not done what was intended, because (for some unknown cause) it first acted on the disease with its opposite symptoms and consequently soon caused an aggravation of the disease in its secondary action, like a palliative remedy, then (without any intermediate medicine having been given in alternation) a second dose of the same dilution can be given with the best curative effect, so that the cure is only obtained by the second dose. This is no doubt owing to the directly opposite symptoms (alternating actions) of this remarkable drug, of which I shall speak further on. But such cases do not often occur, for, as a rule, in an acute disease, the first dose effects all that this medicine can do in a homoeopathic way, if it has been accurately selected according to similarity of symptoms.
Where in the case of an over-excitable system, perhaps also given in too large a dose, it produces too great sensitiveness, or an anxious, exalted states of the sensibility, hastiness, &c., coffee is serviceable as a homoeopathic antidote. When it his been unsuitably chosen so that its symptoms do not correspond in sufficient similarity to those of the disease, the sufferings it causes may, according to their character, be relieved by the antidotal power of pulsatilla of chamomilla, and in rarer cases by cocculus, arnica, camphor or vinegar.
Although its positive effects have a great resemblance to those of nux vomits (which indeed might be infected from the botanical relationship of these two plants) yet there is a great difference in their therapeutic. Employment. The emotional disposition of patients for whom ignatia is serviceable. differs widely from that of those for whom nux vomits is of use. Ignatia is not suitable for persons of patients in whom anger, eagerness, of violence is predominant but for those who are subject to rapid alternations of gaiety and disposition to weep, of in whom we notice the other emotional states indicated at the end of the following list of ignatia symptoms, provided always that the other corporeal morbid symptoms resemble those that this drug can produce.
Even in a high potency, ignatia is a main remedy in cases of vexation in subjects who have no tendency to break out violently of to revenge themselves, but who keep their annoyance to themselves; in whom, in a word, the resemblance of the vexatious occurrence is wont to dwell in the mind, and so also especially in morbid states which ate produced by occurrences that cause grief. So also attacks of even chronic epilepsy, which only occur after mortification or some similar vexation (and not from any other cause). may always be prevented by the timely administration of ignatia. Epileptic attacks that come on in young persons after some great fright, before they become very numerous, may also be cured by a few doses of ignatia. But it is very improbable that chronic epileptic fits of other kinds can be cured, or have ever been cured, by this medicine. At all events, the cases recorded in medical writings as having been cured by ignatia are not to be relied on, for other powerful drugs were almost always administered at the same time or as intermediate remedies, or there is no evidence that the cute was permanent.