Synonym. Arnica Montana. Natural order. Compositae. Common name. Leopard’s Bane. Habitat. A perennial herb growing in mountainous districts of the northern hemisphere. Preparation. Tincture from the root, leaves and flowers, mixed. General Analysis The chief action of Arnica is upon the blood, producing general anaemia and a tendency to haemorrhages, capillary stasis, ecchymoses, defective nutrition, etc. On the muscular, serous, and cellular tissues and tendons it produces conditions quite similar to those resulting from injuries, falls, blows, etc., both external and internal, even to traumatic fever and septicaemia, by purulent infection. It also acts, secondarily, upon the capillaries, stimulating their absorbent power, especially after having been weakened by external injuries. Through the motor nerves it affects the cerebro-spinal axis, causing spinal irritation and its attendant evils, paralysis, etc. In the digestive tract it produces irritation and a low inflammatory condition, giving rise on the one hand to dyspeptic symptoms, and on the other to typhoid conditions. A bruised, sore feeling is its leading peculiarity. Characteristic Symptoms Mind Unconscious (Camph., Belladonna, Opium); when spoken to answers correctly, but unconsciousness and delirium return at once (Baptisia, Hyoscyamus). Stupor, with involuntary discharge of faeces; typhoid. Indifference to everything (Phosphorus, Phosphorus ac.); hopelessness. Fright. Inability to perform continuous active work. Sullen, morose, does not speak a loud word. Sensitive. Low muttering delirium or complete stupor in malarial or typhoid fevers. Want of memory (Anacardium, Lachesis, Nux moschata); forgets the word he is about speaking (Baryta carb.). Fears being struck or even touched by those coming toward him. Violent attacks of anguish; angina pectoris. Hypochondriacal The chief therapeutic value of Argentum Nitricum is in the treatment of catarrhal affections of mucous membranes characterized by a profuse muco-purulent discharge (Pulsatilla). Especially useful in purulent ophthalmia-acute granular conjunctivitis, with profuse discharge, great redness, swelling and even ulceration, the cornea being involved. An excellent remedy in the purulent ophthalmia of new born infants. Useful in ciliary blepharitis (see symptom), though in chronic cases with much thickening of the edge of the lids Argentum met. is more frequently used. Paralysis of accommodation from errors of refraction; glasses failing. Nasal catarrh, with loss of smell and haemorrhages. Acute and chronic pharyngitis, uvula and fauces dark red, thick, tenacious mucus, rawness and soreness, sensation of a splinter, etc. Catarrh of smokers, with sensation of a hair causing cough, better again by smoking. Gastric catarrh and gastro-enteritis, the symptoms agreeing. In children who have disordered stomachs from eating sweets. Cholera infantum in children who look dried up like mummies. Diarrhoea, with characteristic green stools, and flatulence. Advanced dysentery, bloody, slimy stools, suspected ulceration. A valuable remedy, internally, in urethritis, simple or specific, great soreness, burning, violent cutting pains, dysuria, bloody urine. Especially useful in the early purulent stage of gonorrhoea. In gonorrhoea of the female, and in profuse purulent leucorrhoea it is a valuable remedy. Also in erosions and ulcerations of the os and cervix, with much soreness and bleeding. In the chronic laryngitis of singers it is an excellent remedy, though less often indicated than Argentum met. Threatening paralysis of the lungs. Asthma. Angina pectoris. Argentum Nitricum has proved useful in various chronic affections of the brain and nervous system. Melancholia; spinal irritation; epilepsy and epileptiform convulsions; paralysis, paraplegia; functional paralysis following acute diseases, post diphtheritic, etc.; prosopalgia; cardialgia; gastralgia; nephralgia; locomotor ataxia. According to Allen it is a valuable remedy in the mental depression or irritability which results from brain-fag, with general debility and trembling of the whole body. Has been used in septic forms of scarlet fever. In bone affections, especially caries of small bones. In chlorosis.
The chief use of Arnica is in the treatment of the acute or chronic bad effects, even inflammations from mechanical injuries, bruises and contusions (Allen says “of cuts rather than bruises”). Hypericum is better in spinal concussion; Calendula in wounds, with loss of substance, or with suppuration; Rhus in sprains; Symphytum in bone injuries. Arnica is especially useful in bruises with well-marked ecchymoses, and in concussion of the brain or spine (Hypericum). An excellent remedy both locally and internally for the swelling and tumefaction accompanying fractures. Compound fractures and their profuse suppuration. Haemorrhages from any part, of mechanical origin. Myalgia. Muscular pain and soreness from a strain or wrench, or after over exertion (Rhus tox.). Hypertrophy of the heart and palpitation from like causes. It is sufficient to say that Arnica is useful in any disease of any organ or tissue where the disease results directly from traumatic causes. The chief symptom of Arnica in all cases is a “bruised, sore feeling.” This symptom also often indicates Arnica in rheumatism and rheumatoid affections. In gout the patient fears being struck by those coming towards him. Arnica is an excellent remedy to administer after parturition. It relieves the soreness and lameness of the parts, especially after instrumental delivery, and tends to prevent septic infection. Farrington says that it also “promotes proper contraction of the uterus, and expulsion of coagula, and of any portion of the membranes that may have been retained.” It is also an excellent remedy for sore nipples, and for mastitis resulting from injury. The power of Arnica to prevent pyaemia is wonderful, and makes its application after injuries and surgical operations the more important. In retinal haemorrhages Arnica expedites the absorption of clots. As might be surmised from its action on the blood, Arnica is a valuable remedy in typhoid or typho-malarial fevers, and in typhoid states in general, its chief indication being an indifferent, stupid condition, the patient falling asleep when answering a question (Baptisia); feels sore and bruised; the bed seems too hard; the head is hotter than the body; suggillations; petechiae; intestinal haemorrhage; involuntary stools; also when bedsores form. Arnica is useful when boils or abscesses do not mature well and discharge, but are absorbed and pass away, new ones continually forming. Erysipelatous inflammations, and ecchymoses. Varicose veins and ulcers. Arnica is useful in gastro-enteritis, diarrhoea and dysentery with foul stools, and a typhoid tendency. Dyspepsia with foul eructations like rotten eggs, and much offensive flatus of a like odor. Angina pectoris. Pneumonia and pleurisy, especially from injuries. Whooping cough; the child cries before the paroxysm, as though in fear of the soreness it will cause; cough causes blood- shot eyes, nosebleed; expectoration of foaming blood, or clots of blood. Apoplexia; mania; delirium tremens, with characteristic symptoms. Anaemia with great prostration, after injuries or low forms of fever. Spinal irritation; paralysis. Thrombosis. Haematocele.