Concerning the man who had his finger opened I would like to attract the attention of the profession to the inanity of spreading infection by forcing the products of infection into the lymphatics with the knife. Why do not some of our keen eyed pathologists watch that process and tell the profession just what goes on after the knife has been thrust into the bed of inflamed infected tissue.


Mr. F.P.T., age 48, painter. On April 13, 1931, his son noticed a peculiar expression on his fathers face. The patient, himself, noted that he had difficulty in expectorating, because one side of his face did not function properly. Later he found he could not close his eye, even having to cover it at night so that he could sleep. The trouble located on the right side. Before this he had had a bad cold, caught by sitting in a draft. This developed into an attack of sub-acute bronchitis. To add to his discomfort there was pain in the right ear and a boil on the back of the neck. Other symptoms were: Right upper eyelid red and swollen, sensitiveness of right maxilla and vertex of head, deep aching in right maxilla, with temporary amelioration from warm applications.

He was nervous and restless because he could not work, partly from fear of further exposure and partly from embarrassment. There was a noise of escaping steam in both ears. The appetite was increased and he was hungry between meals, a condition entirely foreign to him. The sleep was light, disturbed by any unusual noise, unrefreshing, restless, and he had difficulty in getting to sleep. He was first seen ten days after the trouble began, April 23, 1931. Because of the boil and bronchial trouble he received on that day Hepar sulph. 1M, one dose. This helped the cold and boil but had no effect on the face and eye.

The most peculiar condition about the paralysis was the inability to close the eye, a spastic type of paralysis. This symptom is covered by: Aur. mur., Cadm., Carbo veg., Euphb., NUX VOM., PAR. QUAD., Phos., Sil. This condition with the peculiar sleep, the aggravation from cold and relief from warmth led us directly to Nux vom. He received the 30X on April 30, 1931, the 200th on May 6th and 13th, and Sac. lac. on the 20th. There was steady improvement after starting the Nux vom. and while the condition has not cleared up entirely a recovery may reasonably be expected.

Mr. J.W. Y., age 55, government meat inspector, was an example of surgery run amuck. On February 26, 1931, while about his business, he cut the middle finger of his right hand. This cut came on the palmar surface between the hand and the first knuckle. The wound apparently healed at once but he thought that due to constant danger from contamination he had better have it seen to. On March 3rd he consulted a government surgeon who said that an infection was present. He opened the finger, washed the wound with alcohol and put on a mercurochrome dressing. On the 4th the finger began to pain and swell. On that day the surgeon split the finger open, dressed it in cotton, put the patient to bed and bathed the finger in lysol.

After this the hand began to swell, a temperature developed, with headache, pain in the back, insomnia and profuse sweating. He was sent to the hospital to have the hand drained. Red streaks went up the arm, the lymph glands as far as the axilla swelled and were painful. After many cuts and very free drainage the trouble once more localized in the finger and he was sent home with a tonic as his general health was impaired. Four days later the fingers was again worse and he returned to the hospital. The swelling returned and there was evidence of proud flesh in the wounds. The bone was found to be involved and the finger was amputated.

From that time until seen by us on April 26th there had been no tendency for the wound to heal. Because of the nerve injury due to the amputation and the history of the red streaks he was first given. Hypericum, and was requested to bathe his hand in a solution of Calendula. On May 8th he received Silica 1M, one dose, and under this improvement constant. The wound healed entirely and he had no pain. In fact, his wife objected to his having more medicine as he seemed to be doing so nicely.


Mrs. L. Several years ago this lady ran her index finger into an electric wringer causing an irregular tear in the skin at the junction of the finger and the hand. A surgeon closed the wound and dressed it. A few days later the stitches let go and the wound gaped. There was very little pus, the edges looked pale and inactive, almost dead. It looked as if it would never heal. The surgeon told her later that he was afraid she was going to lose it. He is an old friend of the writer and often pooh-poohed homoeopathy. While he was whetting his knife for further use old man Silica was getting in his licks. The wound was kept dressed but was never restitched, the edges being held in apposition by adhesive tape. As a result this lady still has her finger and a rather obscure scar as mute or eloquent evidence (whichever you or she prefer) of a machine age. CASE IV.

Miss C.L., age 24. Complaints of menstrual trouble since the inception of menstrual life at 15. It has been much worse for the last few periods. The first period was attended by severe pains and cramping. There was no history of exposure then or later. The pain is in the midline of the abdomen, cramping in nature, has no extensions, worse at the beginning of the period and up until the last few periods was relieved when the flow began. Now it lasts through the entire period. The pain is relieved by hot drinks and vomiting, and is worse from lying down and from warm applications to the abdomen. It makes her want to get up and pace the floor. The flow is scanty at one period and copious at the next, an alternating state.

The periods are fairly regular and last five days. dark clots and bright fluid blood. In the evening she is nervous, cannot keep still, cannot keep feet still. This nervous restlessness bears no relation to the period. Prickling in hands and feet evenings. Her posture is stooped, the attracting symptom of the case. She craves sweets, especially candy. Sleep poor, restless and unrefreshing. She is generally worse from heat, a warm room, and better in open air. The stooped posture led to further questioning which brought out a hungry faintness in the forenoon and aggravation from not eating at once, and a history of burning palms and soles. Sulphur 10M, one dose, cleared up the menstrual condition and improved the general health.

Mr. F.B. An incomplete case. He had been working in a factory where he was exposed to fumes of a sulphur compound. he developed an asthmatic state with a severe cough. Here are the symptoms: Short and wheezing breathing, worse lying, walking, exertion of any kind; cough worse lying down, rising from bed, one-half hour after eating, paroxysmal, paroxysms lasting 10 to 15 minutes; cough temporarily relieved by expectoration, bending forward so as to cramp the epigastrium, sitting up and coughing it out and by open air; the expectoration is scanty; sensation of a reed vibrating in the larynx; perspiration during cough; sleep good after coughing it out., He might cough hard the early part of the night, sit up, cough it out and then go back to sleep until morning.

Because of the exposure to sulphur fumes and the marked relief from open air he was given Pulsatilla 200th in repeated doses until a change was noticed, then Sac. lac. This was on May 25th, 1931. A change was noticed but not a pleasant one. He was seen again on the 28th and said he had forgotten to state that when riding in an automobile, especially in the back seat, he became nauseated, that he had been troubled in the past with car-sickness, also that moderate exertion made him worse but violent exertion affected him less and he even felt better for it. Running was not as bad as walking and what he called “chest exercises” if strenuously done did not affect him.

One dose of Sepia 1M was given. This was on the 28th. On the 29th he reported a bad night followed by great general improvement. He was not heard form until June 8th. He had been to the Ford Hospital for a thorough examination where it was found that the sinuses were affected. After “doing his sinuses in oil” he was told that they were the seat of his woes. Other than this he received no assaults upon his system and the mind was more at ease even though his hope is by medication and his remedy looks like Sepia, regardless of where his “distributing” point may be.

On the 8th of June he reports that his cough occurs now mostly in the morning and that he feels generally better. I await the outcome with interest. This cough and breathing calls to mind Puls., Con., Spong.; Puls. because of the great relief from the open air; Con. because of the cough which compels the patient to sit up, cough it out and them permits him to sleep; Spong. because of the cough ameliorated by bending forward. We know Puls. failed and the others had too many contraindications. Two marked generals, later learned, pointed to Sepia. The particulars were cast away and mr. F.B. was prescribed for. TOLEDO, OHIO.


DR. R.E.S HAYES: The first patient mentioned certainly deserved to have a good prescriber for his multiform complaints, and did. I notice that the conditions that came first went off first, then the doctor prescribed for what came last, that is, what was left. Which was all that he could do then, of course. Several questions arise, for instance: Did the doctor prescribe intentionally for the cold and boil first or did Hepar appear to cover the entire condition? What would have been the course of results if a reaction affecting the facial condition had been produced first? Was there a deeper or longer standing constitutional condition-latency, as some of our miasmatists would call it-and were there any symptoms of it upon which a reaction could have been produced? If so, would the cure have been any better than the one the doctor brought out? If you will kindly excuse me, I will leave this for Dr. Pulford and some of the other knowing ones here to answer.

Alfred Pulford
Alfred Pulford, M.D., M.H.S., F.A.C.T.S. 1863-1948 – American Homeopath and author who carried out provings of new remedies. Author of Key to the Homeopathic Materia Medica, Repertoroy of the Symptoms of Rheumatism, Sciatica etc., Homeopathic Materia Medica of Graphic Drug Pictures.