back Colocynthis

Disinclined to talk, to see friends, impatient, easily offended, danger within indignation; colic or other complaints as a consequence.

Colic, terrible; they seek relief by bending double or pressing something hard against the abdomen.

Dysentery-like diarrhœa; renewed after least food or drink, often with the characteristic colic pains.

Frequent urging to urinate, scanty; urine sometimes thick, fœtid, viscid, jelly-like.

Crampy pain in sciatic nerve, from hip down posterior portion of thigh; > from hard pressure and from heat; < in repose, driving patient desperate.

Tendency to painful cramps, with all pains.

Modalities: < evening, anger; after eating; > from coffee, bending double and hard pressure.

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No remedy produces more severe colic than this one, and no remedy cures more promptly.

Dr. T. L. Brown once said to me in substance: If I was disposed to be skeptical as to the power of the small dose to cure, Colocynthis would convince me, for I have so promptly cured severe colic in many cases, from a child to adults, and even in horses. Of course, every true Homœopath can respond amen to that.

The colic of Colocynthis is terrible, and is only bearable by bending double, or pressing something hard against the abdomen. He leans over chairs, the table or bed posts to get relief. This colic is neuralgic in character, and is often attended with vomiting and diarrhœa, which seems to be a result of the great pain more than any particular derangement of the stomach or bowels. We often find it in connection with dysentery. My experience has been that it does not, as a rule, occur in the first stage of the disease, but later, when the disease has not been fully controlled by Aconite, Mercurius, Nux vomica and that class of remedies, but has extended upward to the small intestines. The pains are of a crampy nature. The remedy that comes nearest to Colocynth for colic is Magnesia phosphorica especially in colic in children. They both have the cramping pains, but the pains of Magnesia phos. are most relieved by hot applications like Arsenicum. Both Colocynth and Magnesia phos. are also equally efficacious for neuralgic affections in other localities, for instance, in sciatica and prosopalgia, and even uterine colic of a neuralgic nature, though in this latter affection Magnesia phos. leads. Remember the modalities, for upon the individualization depends the choice between them. Chamomilla and Colocynth resemble each other, in that both have colic from a fit of anger or other neuralgic affections from the same cause. Chamomilla succeeds in the colic of children, if there is much wind which distends the abdomen; the child tosses about in agony, but does not double up like Colocynth. Other symptoms often come in of course and help to choose between them. If both fail I have succeeded with Magnesia phos. Staphisagria is also a remedy for colicky children, with disposition like Colocynth and Chamomilla. In such children the teeth grow black and decay early. Again the Staphisagria child is often troubled with sore eyelids. In such a case there is chronic tendency to colic and Staphisagria is sometimes the only remedy. Veratrum album also has colic, bending the patient double, similar to Colocynth, but the patient walks about for relief, or is much prostrated and has cold sweats, especially on the forehead. Bovista has colic relieved by bending double, after eating.

Dioscorea is a good remedy for wind Colic. The Pain begins right at the umbilicus, and then radiates all over the abdomen, and even to extremities (Plumbum, with walls retracted), and, unlike Colocynth, the pain is aggravated by bending forward and relieved by straightening the body out. Stannum is a colic remedy, and the only way the child is relieved is by being carried with the abdomen on the mother's shoulder. I have cured a case of this kind. It was a very obstinate case of long standing in a weakly child. The usual remedies had signally failed. Jalapa cured one of the most obstinate cases of long standing that I ever saw, the child crying almost continually day and night for weeks. There was in this case diarrhœa all the time. Both colic and diarrhœa were very quickly cured. I have lengthened out these indications for colic remedies in connection with Colocynth because there is great temptation, especially with young physicians, to give "paregoric," soothing syrups, etc., because it is not always easy to find the homœopathic remedy. I never have to do it, and I cure my cases. Of course there are many other remedies for the same trouble, and all have their particular guiding symptoms.

Colocynth not only cures neuralgic affections originating in the abdominal region, but has been very efficacious in facial and sciatic neuralgia. The pains in these localities, like those in the abdomen, are of a decidedly crampy nature. Here also Magnesia phos. often disputes place with Colocynth, in the fact of its also having characteristically the same kind of pains. The relief from heat, although found under both remedies, is most marked under Magnesia phos. In sciatica, the pain of Colocynth extends from the hip down the posterior portion of the thigh into the popliteal fossa (> lying on painful side, Bryonia). Phytolacca, the pains run down the outer side of the thigh. These two remedies, with Gnaphalium, are the leading remedies for the treatment of this most distressing malady. But of course other remedies often have to be given, and the indications are sometimes found outside of the local trouble, as they are in many other diseases. One of the worst cases of sciatica I ever saw was cured with Arsenicum album, on the indications, worse at midnight, especially from 1 to 3 o'clock; burning pains; and the only temporary relief during the paroxysms, was from bags of hot, dry salt applied to the painful part.

The lady was a sister of Charles Saunders, of New York, of school reader fame, who was himself a cripple from allopathically treated sciatica. She, after suffering indescribable agony for six weeks, was cured rapidly and permanently with a dose of Jenichen's 8m of Arsenicum album. So we see again that no remedy and no particular set of remedies can be entirely relied upon, but the indicated one can. These are the chief uses of Colocynth.

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