Synonym – Adonis apennina. Natural order. – Ranunculaceae. Common name. – Pheasant’s Eye. Habitat – A native of Northern Europe and Southern Siberia. Preparation – Tincture from the entire fresh plant.
Adonis first excites the inhibitory nerves in the heart at the central end, increasing arterial tension, and later paralyzes the peripheral end of the vagus. It also excites the accelerating nerves, so that there occurs an interference between the two systems of cardiac innervation, resulting in a feeble and irregular heart action and finally in a total paralysis of the motor nerve supply of the heart. It also causes diuresis. The action of Adonis is rapid and not cumulative.
Head Feels light; aches across the front, from occiput around temples to eyes. Vertigo. Scalp feels tight.
Stomach Heavy weight. Gnawing hunger. Faint feeling in the epigastrium. Better out of doors.
Urinary Organs Oily pellicle on urine.
Heart and Pulse. Mitral and aortic regurgitation. Precordial pain, palpitation and dyspnoea. Marked venous engorgement. Cardiac asthma. Irregular and intermittent pulse.
Neck and Back. Aching in nape of neck. Spine stiff and aching.
Sleep. Restless, with horrible dreams.
Compare Digit., Crataeg., Conval.
Adonis is of special value in valvular disease and cardiac dropsy when there is a lowered vitality with feeble heart action and slow, weak pulse, and especially if the kidneys are acting inefficiently. It is most useful when the compensation is failing, reminding us of Digitalis and often acting well when that drug fails or for any reason cannot be administered. Blackwood reports two cases in which Adonis assisted in establishing a compensatory hypertrophy, “one of aortic stenosis and the other of mitral regurgitation. The symptoms were oedema of the lower extremities, great dyspnoea, scanty urine and irregular pulse.” He also recommends Adonis in “endocarditis when dilatation of the heart is taking place, as indicated by the diminished heart’s action and the lowering of the blood pressure generally; as a result, the function of the kidney is lessened and marked dropsy appears.” In cases of feeble, irregular heart action, with more or less dyspnoea, not dependent upon organic disease, Adonis acts beautifully. It improves the tone of the heart muscle, increases the power of the contractions and regulates the pulse. Has been recommended in the treatment of epilepsy.