Lectures on Diseases of the Nervous System
This historic book may have numerous typos and missing text. Purchasers can download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. Not indexed. Not illustrated. 1876 edition. Excerpt: ...is concerned. The muscles and nerves are probably first afi'ected, and later in the complaint the great centres may become involved, unless the morbid process be arrested. The local symptoms of paralysis always precede the graver manifestations of the later periods of the disease. Epileptic convulsions, and even brain-softening, which appear late in aggravated cases as decided evidences of centric disturbances and changes, are invariably preceded by milder symptoms, such as the characteristic "wrist-drop," or paralysis of the extensor muscles. In what part of the body do painters manifest the greatest activity? In the thumb, tbe hand, and the extensors of the arm: these parts, consequently, receive the greatest supply of blood, which is surcharged with the poison. The flow of blood to them being more rapid, the poison must there first show its effects, causing the palsy to be peripheral. The mortality of the disease seems to bear a direct relation to habits of intemperance and long-continued exposure to sources of infection. Now comes the question of treatment. There are' few diseases in which relief can better be given, and where a proper method proves more satisfactory, than in lead palsy. The first thing to look to is the hygienic condition, which should be made as favorable as possible. The patient should be immediately removed from the noxious influences of his avocation. You cannot think of performing a cure if you allow as much poison to be absorbed as you are eliminating. This elimination can best be attained by a remedy which in this case is almost a specific: it is the iodide of potassium. This, is really as great a specific in lead-poisoning as quinia is in malarial poisoning, and, according to Melsens, the iodide of...
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