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same violence for about half a year. Hardly a day passed without his being obliged to go to bed in consequence of them. About August, they remitted for three or four weeks, but they then recurred with great severity. Toward the end of September they became much less severe, and he was able to go to school, and to follow the common occupations of his years.
For the remainder of the year, he continued in improved health. The pains of the belly were either gone or very trifling; the bowels were nearly regular.
But though this, as a constitutional disease, was nearly cured, as a local disease it continued with very little change. The abdomen was not quite so hard, but it still continued tumid, and with much irregular deformity of shape.
After he had been a patient of the dispensary a twelvemonth, he ceased to attend, and I have since lost sight of him.
Leucorrhoea, Fluor Albos, or the Whites.
Another patient of the General Dispensary afforded me strong evidence how much the sense of weakness, which is so much complained of under the vegetable regimen, is produced by the ur.e of common water. This patient, E. F., aged sixty, was afflicted with leucorrhma; but I do not think it worth while to relate the particulars of her case. I was induced to recommend her to use the regimen, from some circumstances in her general health; and she used it four or five months with evident advantage. Some short time afterward she came to me, at my own house, complaining much of weakness. Upon inquiry, I found that she had quitted London for about a month, to keep a house at Hornsey; that there she had continued the vegetable regimen, but had not used the distilled water, thinking it unnecessary in the country. I explained to her what I thought the cause of her weakness; and she found what I said to be correct. Upon returning to the use of the distilled water, the sense of weakness vanished.
This woman was at a time of life at which people are very apprehensive of permanent injury, from relinquishing animal food. But she certainly experienced much benefit, as was evident from her improved health, and even from her improved looks. She became stronger, and rather gained flesh.
Feebleness of Strength.
Though it is indisputable that animal food most commonly excites and increases the muscular power, yet even this does not appear to be universally true.* There are habits in which obviously, while it impairs the sensibility, it likewise diminishes the muscular strength. A lady somewhat more than thirty years old gave a striking proof of this fact. She had been an invalid some years, complaining principally of weakness, unable on this account to take proper exercise, and pallid. There is, perhaps, at the bottom of these ailments, some uterine complaint; but the symptoms are not very definite. During the year 1812, she adhered to the regimen of distilled water and vegetable diet. In consequence she became less pallid; the countenance expanded and becamf more animated, and she gained strength. These changes must have been occasioned by the relinquishment of animal food; for she had previously been in the habit of using the distilled water, with little influence on her health.
Notwithstanding such evident advantage, I was not a little surprised to find that, at the end of the year, this lady thought proper to abandon the system and return to the use of animal food. The immediate motive to this I could not exactly learn; but suspect that the wish to avoid singularity had a predominant influence on her resolution.
Hypochondriasis, Nervous Weakness, and Constipation.
Feb. 20, 1815.—Mr. P e, aged now thirty-one, a respectable tradesman, consulted me at the end of the year 1811, under great agitation of mind, He had been ill between three and four years; had frequent uneasiness and oppression of the head, for which he had been repeatedly cupped. From this he had received benefit, but it was only temporary; but, besides, he obviously labored under the highest degree of nervous irritation. He labored under great depression of spirits; constant anxiety of mind; he could not talk of his complaints with any calmness; and was constantly uneasy and walking about. Going to a fire oppressed his breath so as not to be bearable. The bowels were habitually bound.
* I am of the opinion that Dr. Lambe had not at the time he wrote duly considered this subject. For a great variety of facts in proof that animal food is not most conducive to physical power, I refer the reader to Graham's Science of Human Life.—S.
He informed me that till the age of twenty-three, he had lived principally on vegetable and farinaceous food; that about this time he began to live much upon a fuller diet of animal food, eating it twice a day, and at the same time became more sedentary; that in consequence he grew fatter, but his health became worse, and he gradually fell into the condition I have described. He had heard of some good having been done by the regimen in a case which he thought similar to his own, and on that account was anxious to try it.
I encouraged him to so, ordering him at the same time a few laxative medicines, which I thought he required. He began at that time, and, as he informs me, has adhered to it ever since. I advised him also to use much exercise on foot.
For a few months the symptoms of this disease continued in full force, but then all his sufferings became alleviated; and during the second year he was quite a different man. He regained his spirits, could attend regularly to his business, and his complaints, though not wholly gone, were comparatively quite trifling. He had lost flesh very much, a loss he found no occasion to regret.
He seems at present in perfect health, subject only to such trifling ailments as happen to every body. Latterly he has gained flesh.
I do not know that this disease was tending to death, or attended with any immediate danger. But the mental sufferings which the patient underwent, were, in my opinion, more severe and harassing than the symptoms of many fatal diseases.
Difficult Urination, Falling of the Womb, and Constipation.
February 20, 1815.—M. J., aged twenty-five, applied to the dispensary in October, 1812. The uterus was prolapsed; she complained of great irritation in making water, and, besides, had obstinate constipation of the bowels, with tumefaction and soreness of the lower part of the abdomen. Under these complaints she had suffered about three years, and to so great a degree that she was hardly able to walk about, or do the work of her house.
She had been at another dispensary, and had a good deal of medical advice, without gaining any effectual relief; and, therefore, though the general state of the health did not seem very bad, I thought medicines alone would prove ineffectual. I therefore proposed the regimen to her, in addition to some demulcents, laxatives, and the regular use of glysters, to unload the lower part of the intestines. She declared herself willing to do any thing at all likely to relieve her; and she began it on the 8th of November, 1812.
From this plan she found a speedy alleviation of her sufferings. In two or three months the soreness and tumefaction of the bowels were removed, and gradually cathartic pills alone did their proper office of unloading the bowels, without the aid of injections. The most obstinate symptom was the pain and irritation in making water. But one day in October, 1813, she voided a calculus about the size of a small bean; and then this irritation ceased, and all her complaints were effectually relieved.
She, like the subject of Case XIV., appeared to become more hot and feverish from relinquishing animal food. The head became oppressed, with a sense of fullness and pain. These effects (for they cannot be thought the direct and natural effects of vegetable diet) seem to me to be analogous to the well-known fact of the pulse rising sometimes by bleeding. A degree of fever that was, as it were, latent and suppressed, becomes evident by the relinquishment of animal food. These symptoms gradually subsided.
It is said that patients laboring under diabetes become more thirsty and feverish by the use of vegetables. This may be true, and I should account for it upon the same principles; but it does not, in my apprehension, form any solid objection against their use even in this disease.
This woman had at the Christmas following a very severe attack of inflammatory fever. The bowels were tender and inflamed ; and the head was affected even to the extent of delirium. But in about a fortnight it subsided, and she was restored to good health. When I last saw her, three or four months ago, she continued her regimen, and was in very good health.
The calculus was certainly only a portion of this woman's sufferings. I may observe that it has been proved very distinctly that vegetable diet alone will not prevent the formation of calculus. A writer, whom I have cited more than once (Lobb, on Stone and Gout), has given a case where a person became first afflicted with calculus, who had used a vegetable diet eight years.
Cancer of the Uterus.
10th March, 1815.—On the 16th of January, 1813, a woman became my patient at the General Dispensary, who, from her good sense and decency of manners, gave me a prospect of being able to effect what I had long had at heart: to treat a case of carcinoma, in an early stage, as I judge such a case ought to be treated, under the inspection of upright and enlightened professional men—terms, which it needs no testimony of mine to show to be applicable to the gentlemen, my colleagues, at that institution.
A. R., in the forty-third year of her age, had been afflicted for eight months with very severe pains, referred principally to the region of the uterus. The pain, she said, was darting and shooting; and though seated principally in the uterus, it was sometimes in front, at other times posterior, about the rectum. For, about the same time, she had had a discharge of a thin, foetid, and apparently acrimonious ichor, sometimes tinged with blood. This discharge inflamed the skin of the thighs, with which it came in contact. * I took an early opportunity of making an examination of the parts. I found the os tineas low down in the vagina; it was not much changed in form; perhaps it was a little fuller than natural. But it was very tender; a little handling gave uneasiness; and the pain, as she told me, from this cause, lasted almost the whole succeeding day.
I could not doubt that these were symptoms of cancer, an opinion in which I was confirmed by the habit and appearance of the subject. She described herself as having been long in a feeble, delicate state of health. The appetite had been very bad even for years, but had been latterly much worse. She had lost many teeth; and the gums were very lax and spongy. The countenance was pallid; the strength was somewhat impaired; the breathing bad, particularly upon