Pages from the MANUAL OF MATERIA MEDICA, edited by Dr. N. C. Bose. Copyright to Messrs. M. Bhattacharyya & Co., 84, Clive Street, Calcutta.
Synonym: Hepar sulphuris Calcareum.
It is an impure Calcium sulphide, prepared according to Hahnemann by heating a mixture of Calcined Oyster shells and flower of sulphur, and is triturated for use. It was first proved by Hahnemann, who says of it, “I have found a very small portion of a grain of the million-fold attenuation”–3rd.–“quite sufficient, often too large for a dose.” (Mat. Med. Pura).
A “tissue” drug of wide action. It stimulates Mercury in its action on the glandular system, especially on the liver and kidneys, Sulphur in its action on the skin and mucous membrane of the intestinal tract, Calcarea in affecting the respiratory tract, and all of the foregoing in its general action on connective tissue. Extreme sensitiveness to a draught of air, easy perspiration, profuse secretions and suppurative tendencies are marked characteristics of the drug.
Therapeutic uses: Suitable for scrofulous and lymphatic subjects, with light hair and complexion, soft and flabby muscles. There is a tendency to suppuration. Inflammation and suppuration of glands; boils, ulcers, abscesses, and suppurations in general; threatened suppuration, as in abscesses, furuncles and carbuncles, characterized by throbbing, sticking pains. SENSITIVENESS TO OPEN AIR, with chill and frequent nausea; catarrhal affections; bronchitis; croup; laryngitis; Pleurisy, Pneumonia. Consumption; whooping cough. Urticaria. Whitlow. Tonsillitis; ophthalmia; diarrhoea; dysentery; enuresis; dyspepsia Bad effects from abuse of Mercury; secondary syphilis. On skin: eczema, tetters, excoriations, erysipelas; tinea capitis; rhagades; humid eruptions. If favors suppuration if given low; and often prevents it, if given in a higher potency.
Hepar sulph. is “sometimes indicated in the marasmus of children who have diarrhoea, worse in the daytime and after eating, with the peculiar sour odor to the sweat and stools. Cases requiring Hep. are as a rule extremely sensitive to external impressions, especially to the slightest cold; for example, it has removed the effects of malarial poisoning which have been maltreated with calomel and quinine, from the simple indications of profuse and easy sweat, which is offensive, and of such extreme sensitiveness to air that the patient wears an overcoat in hot weather. Hepar is generally indicated by extreme sensitiveness of inflamed parts, as if they were about to suppurate. The pains of Hep. are almost universally splinter-like in character, even the neuralgias and toothaches are of this sort. It is indicated in threatening suppurations, with great soreness and sharp pains as if about to suppurate. General aggravation from cold dry winds.”.
Mind: Sadness and bitter crying. Fright on slumbering; concerning sickness in family, or as if neighbours house burning, etc. Remembers everything which has been unpleasant during her life. Discontented. Irritable. Violent about trifles. “Dementia, with complete stupidity, is silent and speechless. Melancholia, with paroxysms of violence, hasty speech (“words roll out, tumbling over each other,”) in patients who have taken much mercury. Hypochondriasis.”.
Head: The headaches of Hepar may be catarrhal or neuralgic or due to abuse of mercury. Sticking pain waking him at night, with confusion, as if skull would burst. Tensive pain above root of nose. Hemicrania, PAIN IN ONE-HALF OF BRAIN AS FROM A NAIL OR PLUG. “Headache following the abuse of mercury, of a neuralgic character, sometimes boring at the root of the nose, sometimes feeling as if a plug or nail were driven into the head (Thuja, Ign.); sometimes a feeling as if the eyes would be pulled backward into the head: the headache generally better tightly binding the head (Merc.; Iod.). Falling of hair after mercury. Extreme sensitiveness of the scalp, could scarcely comb the hair, with painful nodes on the scalp; the bones of the skull pain at night. Eczema of the head, with great sensitiveness, tendency to ulceration, bleeding, offensive discharge.”.
Eyes: Here the remedy is indicated in a great variety of scrofulous inflammations (Ars. iod., Calc., Kali bi., Merc. bin., Rhus t., Sulph.), particularly ulcerations of the cornea (Arg. n., Aur., Cinnabar., Graph., Merc. cor., Merc. v., Nit. a., Sil., Sulph.) involving inner layer and accompanied by collection of pus in the anterior chamber. The cases requiring Hepar are generally of a sluggish type, anaemic, sweat easily, worse night, very sensitive to open air, and perhaps have been salivated. Keratoiritis, involving also the ciliary body. Chronic catarrh of the conjunctiva, with very profuse muco-purulent discharges. Ulceration of margins of the lids and inflammation of the Meibomian glands. Sub-acute inflammation of the lachrymal sac, with very free secretion of pus in the inner angle of the eye. Inflammation and ulceration of the margins of the lids, with collection of much dry matter in the lashes. Erysipelatous inflammation of the substance of the lids threatening suppuration. Moist, offensive eczema of the lids. Herpes following the course of the supraorbital nerve, with severe pains as if the eyes would be drawn back into the head.” Inflammation and swelling, with redness of white of the eye. Pain from day- light, worse moving them, with redness. Pain in eyeballs, with bruised pain on moving them. Smarting in external canthus, and hard mucus. Dim vision in evening by candle-light.
Ears: External parts red, hot and itching. “Inflammation of the outer and middle ear; ulceration and offensive, bloody discharge (Tellur.), generally with violent pain, perforation of the drum, especially following overdosing with mercury.” There is great sensitiveness to touch and to cold air. Hepar should be thought of in furuncles of the auditory canal (Calc. pic. Merc. v., Pic. ac).
Nose: It is useful in coryza, with swelling and redness, and internally and externally, the nose pains like a boil. Smell sensitive; or lost. Mucus from posterior nares mixed with blood. Blowing of offensive mucus, even without catarrh. Bleeding; after singing; blowing of clotted blood; or drops of blood exude every morning. The nose is very sensitive internally to air and to touch (Aur., Cinnab., Merc. v., Mezer., Sil. For nose-bleed in morning, compare: Ambr. gr., Bov., Bry., Carbo an., Hamam. Kali c., Lach.). Profuse greenish-yellow discharge. “Ozaena, soreness of nasal bones, heat, ulceration, nose sensitive to air and touch; discharge very offensive (Puls., Kali iod., Graph.).
Chronic diseases of the nose resulting from abuse of mercury.”.
Face and Mouth: Chronic Hepar patients usually have yellowish color of the face. SWELLING OF UPPER LIP (Calc. c.), with tension and with pain on touch; eruption in corner, with heat. Erysipelatous swelling of cheeks. The teeth are loose, with tenderness of gums (Merc.). Aching in all teeth after cold drinks or opening mouth. The tip of the tongue is sensitive; burning pain at the tip, which even wakes him up at night. White aphthous pustules on inside of lips and cheeks and on tongue (Kali chlor.), with pain, worse touch and drink. Bitter taste; in back of throat, with natural taste to food Offensive odor from mouth. In catarrh and coryza, the taste is usually lost. “Abscesses at roots of teeth which have been filled. Unhealthy gums, which ulcerate and bleed, with offensive odor.”.
Throat: STICKING AS FROM SPLINTER (like fish-bone) ON SWALLOWING, EXTENDING TOWARDS EAR ON YAWNING (Nit. ac.). Fear of constriction. Smarting, worse swallowing solids, with rawness and scraping. Feeling as of a plug of mucus or swelling at entrance of the throat. Feels as if he has to swallow over a swollen part in throat (Phyto.). Hepar is especially useful in peri-tonsillar suppuration or quinsy. “Tonsillitis in the suppurative stage; it is indicated after Bell. and Baryta, these three remedies may follow in succession; Bell in the very onset. Baryta after Bell has subjugated dryness and fever, then if suppuration threatens Hepar the indications of which are the fetid odor of the salivation, sharp splinter-like pains on swallowing and great sensitiveness to air, or even chilliness. Sometimes indicated in follicular inflammation of the pharynx, with splinter-like pains and the general symptoms of the drug.” Hepar sulph., 1x, claims to abort quinsy and other suppurative conditions, if taken at the very onset of the trouble, at the first stab,as Pierce puts it; BARYTA carb. 30th., has the reputation of a prophylactic to quinsy.
Stomach: In dyspepsia following the abuse of mercury or even quinine, and it is indicated by the longing for highly-seasoned food or acids, for sour, pungent articles; and disgust for fat or fat foods (Kali m., Puls.). DESIRE FOR VINEGAR. Longing for wine. No thirst, Eructations after eating, of sourish fluid; or, frequent eructations, without odor or taste (Arg. nit.; China); or sometimes smelling like rotten eggs (Ant. t., Arn., Psor., Staph., Sulph.). Vomiting of bile in morning after long violent retching; mucus and bile. Gastric enteritis. Pain in pit in morning on waking; pain after eating a little. Stomach feels as if hung loose when walking. Tension across pit, he must loosen his clothes and cannot sit. Heaviness and acidity.
Abdomen: Rumbling; noisy movements. Abdomen DISTENDED, TENSE (Graph., Lyc., Carbo v.). Fermentation above umbilicus. Paroxysmal clawing in umbilical region, from sides of abdomen, towards middle and sometimes to pit of stomach, causing nausea, with anxious heat of cheeks. Suppuration of glands, buboes (Calc. c., Merc., Thuja, Nit. ac.). It is frequently indicated in threatening or actual abscess of the liver. Chronic hepatitis.
Rectum, Anus and Stool: “Bowels very inactive, the soft stools are evacuated slowly and with effort.” Stools may be high- colored, with enlargement of the liver. CLAY-COLORED STOOL. Greenish. STOOL, NOT HARD, SCANTY, YET DIFFICULT TO EXPEL, WITH MUCH URGING. Diarrhoea white, sour, undigested, or sometimes mucus, yellow or green and of decayed odor. The sour odor of the stools and sweat is often an indication for this drug (Bry., Rheum). Chronic catarrh of the intestines, abdomen distended, tender, with fermentation or with a feeling of clawing or cutting extending towards the umbilicus.
Urinary Organs: “Valuable in certain stages of inflammation of the kidneys, especially after abuse of mercury, with soreness in region of kidneys, incessant urging to urinate, sour sweat, diarrhoea, etc. Occasionally in albuminuria during diphtheria. Atony or paralysis of bladder, urine passes very slowly and with- out any force, the bladder does not seem to empty itself. Oily film upon the surface of the urine.” BLADDER WEAK. URINE DROPS DOWN VERTICALLY AND HE MUST WAIT BEFORE URINE FLOWS (Caust., Op.). HE CAN NEVER FINISH URINATING, SOME URINE SEEMS TO REMAIN IN BLADDER (Helo.). Urine acrid and burning (Merc.).
Male Sexual Organs: Hepar is of value in venereal ulcers with fetid discharge. Ulcers externally on prepuce, similar to chancre (Nit. ac.). Itching of glans; of fraenum; on scrotum. Profuse secretion of an offensive odor from the glans penis. Figwarts of an offensive odor. Herpes of the prepuce, which is very sensitive and bleeds easily. Suppurating inguinal glands, with offensive moisture in the folds of the skin. Abscesses on genital organs, with sharp pain and offensive odor to the discharge. “It is one of the best remedies to clear up an old gonorrhoea”–(PIERCE.).
Female Sexual Organs: Hepar is indeed extremely useful in pyosalpingitis, especially cases traceable to old gonorrhoea. Soreness between pudenda and thighs. Itching of pudenda during menstruation. Discharge of blood from uterus after distension of abdomen. “Enlargement of ovaries, with great soreness, pain in back (Helon.), etc. Abscesses of the labia, which are very sensitive, with splinter-like pains. Ulceration of the uterus, with offensive discharge. Extremely offensive leucorrhoea of a decayed odor.” Menstruation delayed and diminished.
Respiratory Organs: “Cough caused by eating or drinking any- thing cold.” (LIPPE). We should also remember, in Hepar there is a decided aggravation from cold air. PAROXYSMAL COUGH, IF LEAST PORTION OF THE BODY BECOMES COLD. Cough, worse walking; worse deep breathing, so as to cause vomiting. Weakness of organs of speech and of chest, so that she cannot speak aloud (Phos., Caust.). DYSPNOEA. Subacute inflammation of the larynx, with considerable secretion of mucus. In a late stage of membranous croup, with hoarseness, profuse collection of mucus, difficult respiration. Hepar should be given very cautiously even in a late stage of membranous croup; overdosing with it is apt to cause recurrence of the more acute symptoms, lessening the secretion of the mucus rendering the cough dry and tight, and to increase the difficulty in breathing; it follows well after Spongia. Spongia should be given after Hepar, only when Hepar has aggravated the cough and caused a return of the former symptoms. Hepar is never to be given when there is a hot dry skin; the child is always sweaty and weak; it is to be carefully differentiated from Kali bi. and Bromine, neither of which is indicated when there is fever; the tenacious character of the expectoration indicates Kali bi., while Bromine is indicated by the spasmodic character of the cough and expiration, and a tendency to cyanosis. Subacute bronchitis, cough loose and rattling, worse cold air, always worse towards morning; (the profuse collection of mucus in the chest, which cannot be removed by coughing, with free sweating, is like Tart. em.).
“There is soreness of the chest, with a tendency to take cold. If he is uncovered, it makes the cough worse”–(Blackwood). “Late stage of pleuritis, with exudation, with the general indications of the drug.” In Bronchitis and Broncho-pneumonia, with a good deal of mucus in the chest; the cough is loose and rattling, worse towards morning and from cold air; so susceptible is the patient to cold that the slightest draft or even putting the hands out from under the bed-clothes is enough to set him coughing.”–(Pierce). “Hepar is of value in late stage of pneumonia” (and in phthisis) “with profuse purulent expectoration and threatening abscess of the lungs.” In abscess of the lungs, when the characteristic symptoms of Hepar correspond.
Extremities: Drawing pains, worse thighs and legs with paralytic sensations, Bruised pain in humerus. Axillary glands suppurate. “Very valuable in run arounds and even in felons, with sharp suppurative pains.” Excellent results have been obtained in hip joint disease in the suppurative stage.
Skin: Yellow color. Jaundice, with blood-red urine and yellow color of whites of eyes. Nettle-rash on face. SKIN IS UNHEALTHY, SLIGHTEST INJURIES SUPPURATE (Sil.). Cracking and smarting of skin on hands and feet (Graph.). SORENESS AND MOISTURE IN FOLD BETWEEN SCROTUM AND THIGH (Sulph.). ULCERS BLEED ON SLIGHT WIPING (Nit. ac.). Skin very sensitive to touch and to slightest cold. Itching of nose; in bend of elbow; in palms; on hands, with rough, dry, shrivelled skin. “General moist eruptions, which smell badly, suppurate and bleed, General inflammations and blisters, which threaten to suppurate, and in which there are sharp suppurative pains.”.
Fever: “The easy chill from exposure to air, even from putting the hand out of bed (causing cough), and the general tendency to sweat are the general indications in febrile states; there is comparatively little fever. Sour sweats.” Sweat on slightest motion (Merc.), CONSTANT OFFENSIVE EXHALATIONS FROM BODY. It has been used for chronic malarial poisoning that has been maltreated with calomel and quinine and here also the easy and offensive sweat and the extreme sensitiveness to air are our guides to Hepar. There may be urticaria associated (either preceding or accompanying the chill) and disappearing as the heat begins.
Aggravation: From dry cold air; from touching the affected part; at night; in morning; during sleep; on swallowing; lying on painful side.
Amelioration: From wrapping up; warmth; in damp weather; after eating.
Similar: Alumin., Calc. c., Calc. s., Iod., Kali bi., Merc., Rheum, Sil., Sulph.
Antidotes: Act. rac., Ars., Bell., Cham., Sil.
HEPAR. antidotes the effects of mercurial and other metallic preparations, iodine and especially iodide of potash, and Cod Liver Oil; it removes the weakening effects of either.–(HERING).
Dose: 1st trituration to 200th potencies, and also higher.