Syphilinum is prepared from the scraping of a syphilitic chancre. Skinner and Swann, two American homoeopaths, did the first experimentations. Its pathogenesis is to be found in Allens Materia Medica of the Nosodes.
In France we still use Hepato-Syphilinum extracted from the liver of a still-born hepato-syphilitic. This nosode is generally used in high potencies from 200 to 10,000.
In primary syphilis Syphilinum has little or no effect at all, and then Mercury should be given in high potencies. Syphilinum will be useful as a remedy to bring about a reaction in the system. This remedy will be of great value in old syphilitics whose convalescence is particularly long after an acute disease. It is in this way that when a patient is slowly re-establishing himself after typhoid, a single dose of Syphilinum will bring him back his appetite, strength, sleep and a rapid gain of his former weight (Kent).
It acts in old syphilitics, who had the symptoms of this remedy and were aggravated by Sulphur: Syphilinum is the antidote of Sulphur.
When a patient is aggravated by Sulphur. one must always think of the existence of a latent state of syphilis, if Pulsatilla, another antidote of Sulphur, does not produce any result. Syphilinum is to be employed as any other remedy of the Materia Medica according to the law of similitudes, even if syphilis is not the cause and it is in this case that it often gives the best results.
On the contrary, in certain cases, etiological notion will make us prescribe syphilinum. For example:
1. In old syphilitics of slow convalescence.
2. In patients aggravated by Sulphur.
3. In old syphilitic patients who do not respond to well indicated remedies Syphilinum will root out the barrier and the remedies will act more promptly.
4. In old syphilitic patients presenting affections without precise symptoms, Syphilinum will bring out the symptoms.
5. In old syphilitics or non-syphilitics suffering for years and years from affections of the throat and skin.
Syphilinum has some important characteristics, good to remember, which we are going to mention in brief.
The pains of Syphilinum last from twilight till down. The pains start with the sunset and end with the rising of the sun (as in Mercurius, Phytolacca).
Consequently patient is aggravated during the whole or part of the night, particularly insomnia. The nocturnal pains increase and decrease gradually, as in Stannum and Strontium carbonicum. They are erratic in nature. The patient is obliged to change position frequently. He looks with terror at the approaching night. He wakes up tired both physically and mentally.
In consequences, all nightly aggravation should lead us to think of Syphilinum. This aggravation is seen in ophthalmic troubles (the eyelids stick together at night), in neuralgia, headache, asthma and cough, whether it is a question of syphilis or not. Syphilinum vies with Sulphur as a sleep restorer. It is an excellent remedy for insomnia.
It is a big remedy for ulcerations of the mouth, nose, genital organs and skin. These ulcerations in general lie on a greyish base. In nose they produce offensive ozaena; Syphilinum also acts on eruptions of sombre red or copper-like colour, turning blue as soon as the patient gets cold. It is indicated in all ulcerations particularly of a foetid nature. It is a big remedy in abscesses that repeat themselves.
Immoderate desire for alcohol is one of the most characteristic symptoms of Syphilinum. It is good in all its forms. Here also see alcoholic heredity, as in Asarum, Tuberculinum, Sulphur and Acid sulph.
For years the patient suffers from obstinate constipation, as if the rectum is closed due to strangulation. Moreover, Syphilinum is a remedy for fissures in the anus, rectum and prolapsus recti in patients who have got syphilitic antecedents.
Leucorrhoea is so abundant and profuse that the patient has to dress up carefully; even then it pierces the sheet and runs down the heel as in Alumina.
Falling of hair is often connected with violent headache of neuralgic type, causing insomnia, and delirium at night. Generally this kind of headache starts at about 4 p.m., and reaches its height at 10 or 11 p.m. and ceases at dawn with rising of the sun. In neuralgia of Lycopodium, the pain ceases between 11 p.m. and midnight. In Syphilinum the tibia and the bones of the head are very painful.
Let us also note a curious symptom, but very real, the patient constantly washes his hands. I treated a young man who had a specific history and who always used to wash his hands; Syphilinum has slightly improved him.
Some of the symptoms of Syphilinum are ameliorated by warmth, others by cold air and cold applications.
In Syphilinum considerable emaciation of the whole body must be noted as well.
The interesting “sensations” that characterize the remedy, are the following:.
Bubbling as if a stream of hot water or hot oil running throughout the veins at night; afraid of madness or of paralysis particularly of the tongue; head is drawn backwards, as if held by a weight; sand in the eyes; right eye wide open, with a sensation of cold air blowing in; as if something were crawling in the teeth, a worm for example; looseness of teeth. Strangulation of rectum by adhesion. Sternum drawn backwards towards the vertebral column; swelling in the region of coccyx and pain in bones as if sawed; as if palms of hands and soles of feet were pierced by needless.
Aggravation. By touch (specially the tibia and the neck of the uterus), by movement, on raising and flexing the arms, at night (very important aggravation).
Dampness, heat, thunder, sea-side, in hot or cold season.
Amelioration. In toothache, while clenching the teeth together; pains in the thighs and legs are ameliorated on walking; headache by heat; toothache ameliorated by heat and cold; ophthalmic pains relieved by cold water, complaints better in mountain or in the country (Medorrhinum, which is ameliorated on the sea-side).
Comparisons. In syphilitic affections of bones, we should think of: Syphilinum, Asarum, Asa-foetida, Kali-Iodatum, Mercurius and Nitric acid.
Concerning night aggravation we should remember Syphilinum, Aurum, Mercurius and Sulphur. Medorrhinum and the anti-sycotics have aggravations early in the morning, or during the day.
So for the aggravation by seaside, Syphilinum opposes Medorrhinum and Natrum muriaticum, which are sometimes ameliorated by seaside.
In pains which increase and decrease gradually, apart from Syphilinum, the following remedies should be noted: Stannum and Strontium. I know a case of facial neuralgia which after a long time, was ameliorated by Strontium carbonicum, because the pain increased and decreased slowly.
In ozaena: Syphilinum, Sepia, Pulsatilla, Psorinum and Kali bichromicum should be remembered.
In recurring abscesses one can prescribe Syphilinum, but Anthracinum, Arnica, Gunpowder, also give very good results.
When emaciation is very prominent: Syphilinum, Abrotanum, Iodium, Natrum muriaticum, Tuberculinum and Sanicula are important.
In lancinating pains of the heart:
1. Shifting from the base to the apex: Syphilinum.
2. Shifting from apex to the base: Medorrhinum.
3. Shifting from base to the clavicle or to the shoulder: Spigelia.
I have just said that Syphilinum wakes up exhausted in the morning; it must be remembered that Lachesis, too, has this important modality.
Causticum, like Syphilinum, has the ptosis of the upper eyelid. In dipsomania, i.e. immoderate desire for alcohol, apart from Syphilinum the following can be prescribed: Asarum, Psorinum, Tuberculinum, Sulphur and Sulphuric acid. In obstinate constipation with labor-like pains: Syphilinum, Lac defloratum. I cured a baby with this last remedy, and Tuberculinum; he could not tolerate milk.
Syphilinum is also a good remedy for chronic rheumatism, especially rheumatism of the left shoulder. It is aggravated by raising the right hand, as Rhus tox. and Sanguinaria, or by raising the left hand as Ferrum.
Syphilinum has aphonia during menses, as Gelsemium. It has hoarseness before menses set in, as Graphites and Manganese, and during menses: Calcarea, Graphites and Spongia.
In Lympho-sarcoma, think of Syphilinum and Cistus canadensis.
PATHOGENESIS OF Syphilinum.
Mind. Loss of memory, especially where names and dates are concerned; fear of the night; the patient is worse at the approach of night, which aggravates his sufferings; sensation of becoming mad; apathy; indifferences to future; the incessant cries of new-born children are sometimes ameliorated by Syphilinum; irritability, anger.
Head. Vertigo while looking up; headache aggravated at night or after an exposure in the sun; generally aggravation occurs between 10 and 11 p.m. and ceases at sunrise. This kind of headache is accompanied by insomnia and restlessness. Syphilinum also gives good results in headache of old syphilitics, piercing, unbearable, lasting for months, extremely painful, especially above the right eye; the pain radiates toward the interior of the brain. One can also note lancinating pains in the occiput and also falling of hair.
The pains of the head are linear, following a precise line. Eyes. Ophthalmia of new-born babies; syphilitic iritis; chronic phlyctenular inflammation of the cornea, with very marked photophobia; pustulous conjunctivitis in scrofulous children; scrofulous eruptions at the angles of the eyes. Intense lachrymation, redness of the eyes with intense pains, agglutination of the lids in the morning and sensation of cold air blowing on the eye (in this respect, think of Fluoric Acid as well).
Ears. Calcareous deposits on the tympanum; caries of the bones of ears, of syphilitic origin; otorrhoea with watery or purulent discharge.
Nose. Caries of the nasal bones; perforation of the palate, ozaena, chronic catarrhal rhinitis; burning sensation inside the nose, itchings, formation of crusts in the nose which are also the symptoms of Kali bichromicum, Mercurius and Hydrastis. Sensation as if the nose is blocked, chronic coryza with very abundant, foetid, thick, greenish-yellow discharge. Formation of crust in nose during sleep.
Face. Facial paralysis, especially of right side, whence difficulty of talking and mastication arises. Pale face, full of herpetic eruptions, crusts on the face; facial neuralgia.
Mouth. Caries of teeth crumbling away bit by bit at the root; sensation as if a worm is inside the tooth; herpetic eruptions of the mouth, amygdales and palate. The tongue is coated with a thick and dirty layer. Painful ulcerations, burning like fire, intense salivation and imprint of teeth on the tongue. This salivation is so abundant at night, that when the patient gets up, his pillow is all soaked with his drivellings. Foetid breath.
Stomach. Immoderate desire for alcohol; at first a voracious appetite, then absolute loss of appetite for months. Aversion to meat; flatulence, burning as if from hot water; sensation of soreness extending from throat to the stomach.
Stools. Obstinate constipation; stool earthy coloured, foetid; sensation as if the anus is closed by adhesions; the use of the canula is excessively painful. Near the seaside, painless bilious diarrhoea, compelling the patient to jump out of bed at five in the morning. Fissure in the anus (like Thuja).
Urinary Organs. Sensation in the morning as if the orifice of the urethra is blocked; burning and difficulty during urination. Urine at very long intervals. On the contrary, frequent urging to urinate at night.
Male genital organs. In the Materia Medica it is given for indurated chancre; but Syphilinum has never given me any good result. Inflammation and induration of the spermatic cord.
Female genital organs. Leucorrhoea, abundant, yellowish, thick, foetid, with constant pain in the lumbar region, aggravated at night. Leucorrhoea flowing in stream as in Alumina. Leucorrhoea of young girls, syphilitics or non-syphilitics. Cutting pain in the region of the uterus. Dysmenorrhoea; great sensibility, particularly of the neck of the uterus, allowing neither examination nor any appliance. Ovarian congestion and tendency to ovarian tumours. Sensitiveness of the breast and more particularly at the time of menses.
Respiratory organs. Hoarseness, aphonia almost complete during the day which precedes the menses. Chronic asthma in summer, and cough when weather is hot and damp. Night aggravation. Whooping cough with much vomiting. Chronic bronchitis with sibilant rales and rhonchi as in Antimonium tartaricum.
Heart. Lancinating pain at night, radiating from the base to the apex. Syphilinum is indicated in all valvular affections. Sensation of blood boiling in the arteries at night.
Limbs. Sciatica aggravated at night and ameliorated at day break. Rheumatic pain of the shoulder, and arm seems to be disabled. These pains are worse when the patient tries to raise the arm. Excruciating pains of the lower limbs, preventing sleep, with aggravation by hot applications, and amelioration by applying cold water in the painful parts. The patient suffering from pains in the lower limbs, cannot place himself on a low seat nor squat, because of tearing pains in his knees and thighs, pains which are always worse at night.
Skin. Pemphigus, copper-coloured spots, pustulous eruptions in different parts of the body with a sensation as if bed bugs were tormenting at night.
Sleep. Great restlessness at night, absolute insomnia. Impossible for the patient to keep his legs in the same place. He wakes up after midnight and cannot sleep till late in the morning.
Generalities, Syphilinum has prostration and great exhaustion in the morning, and the children of the type of Syphilinum look “old”. They are “little dwarfs” of syphilitic heredity (Baryta carb.) Syphilinum is a good complement of Lycopodium. If Lycopodium is indicated, and if it does not work after a given time, think of Syphilinum, and vice versa (Fergie Woods). In certain children, as Dr. Barishae says, Syphilinum and Bacillinum given in turn produce excellent results.