back Dioscorea

Synonym. - Dioscorea. Natural order - Dioscoreacea. Common name. - Wild Yam. Habitat, - A perennial creeping plant indigenous to the United States. Preparation. - Tincture from the fresh root.

Through the ganglionic nervous system Dioscorea exerts its action mostly in the umbilical region, giving, as its most characteristic effect, severe pain simulating a so-called " bilious colic," and different from its well-known analogue, Colocynthis, in that "while the patient has a tendency to bend double, and feels as if pressure would relieve, as a matter of fact it aggravates, and most solace is obtained by stretching the body out."

Mind.- Calls things by wrong names.

Head. - Vertigo and dizziness. Dull pain in head and temples, Sharp pain in the temples.

Eyes.- Eyes weak, sore and smarting. Agglutination of the lids mornings.

Ears. - Dull, pressing pains in front of both ears. Sharp pain in front and behind the ears.

Nose.- Irritation of nasal passages with much sneezing (Acon.,, Gels.). Discharge of bright-red blood from left nostril. Soreness of the nostrils. Offensive, .bad smell in the nose.

Face.- Dull, grinding, drawing, digging or sharp darting pains at angle of left lower jaw.

Mouth. - Heavy brown coating on the tongue mornings. Sides of tongue sore as if burnt (Coloc, Iris, Plat., Sang., Verat. vir.). Tip of tongue sore. Mouth very dry, bitter and clammy in the morning. Soreness of gums and roof of mouth.

Throat. - Xrrita/tion, burning and smarting in throat and fauces. Soreness and pain in parotid glands.

Stomach. - Sour or bitter eructations. Belching of large quantities of tasteless wind, momentarily relieving 1 the distress at the stomach (Carb. ac). Nausea. Empty eructations. Faint, uneasy feeling at stomach. Constant distress at stomach, with frequent sharp pains; had to unfasten the clothing. Distressing pain at epigastrium relieved by raising sour, bitter wind. Burning at the stomach (Ars.). Sharp, cramping pain in pit of stomach, followed by raising, belching and gulping enormous quantities ol tasteless wind, followed by hiccough and discharge of flatulence from the bowels. Sharp, cutting pains in epigastrium (Coloc).

Abdomen- Sharp pain iu left hypochondrium. Dull, heavy grinding pain in region of liver, worse evenings. Cutting pain in region of liver. Hard, dull pain in region of gall bladder. Constant distress in the umbilical and hypogastric regions, with severe cutting, colic-like pains every few minutes in stomach and small intestines (Coloc). Griping, cramping pains in the umbilical region (Coloc.) . Rumbling in the bowels and passing large quantities of flatus. oFlatulence after meals, wind colic, with but little or no hepatic derangement. Discharge of offensive flatus. Twisting and sharp cutting pains in the bowels. Bowels sore and tender on pressure. Pain in inguinal regions extending to the testicles.

Stool and Anus.- Itching in the rectum. Hemorrhoidal tumors like red cherries, with pain and distress in anus. Frequent urgent desire for stool. Diarrhoea early in morning, driving out of bed (Aloe, Podo., Rumex, Sulph.). Very profuse, thin, yellow stool in the morning. Loose stools with much straining. Stools slimy, dark-colored; bilious; very offensive; light mushy.

Male Organs. - Constant excitement of genital organs, with frequent erections. Genitals cold and relaxed (Agn., Camph.). Strong-smelling perspiration on scrotum and pubes. Diminished sexual desire. Emission of semen during sleep (Cinch., Phos. ac).

Respiratory Organs. - Hacking cough from irritation and tickling low down in the throat. Dull, aching, or sharp cutting pain in both lungs.

Heart. - Sharp pain in region of heart.

Neck and Back.- Dull pain in back of neck. Back lame in the morning. Severe backache. Sharp pains in the back.

Upper Limbs. - Pain in left shoulder. Hard aching pains in bones of forearm, and in wrist and hands.

Lower Limbs. - Hard dull, or tearing pains in the hips. Pain in right leg from point of exit of sciatic nerve, felt only when moving the limb, or when sitting up. Knees lame, weak and painful. Hard, dull, or sharp pains in leg. Ankles weak and painful.

Generalities. - Restless, trembling, faint feeling. Languid tired feeling. Itching of various parts of the body and limbs (Carb. ac).

Skin. - oPanaritium, early when pains are sharp and agonizing, or when pricking is felt; nails brittle.

Aggravation- In evening after lying down; at night; from lying down; from doubling up.

Amelioration- When moving in the open air; motion; riding or walking; standing erect.

Compare.- Aesc, Aloe, Berb., Bry., Coloc, Magn., Nux v., Podo., Puls., Sulph.


The chief use of Dioscorea is in the treatment of flatulent or bilious colic, with the symptoms already mentioned, and differing from Colocynth in that the pains are more continuous, not occurring in paroxysms, and are worse from bending double, only being relieved by stretching the body out or standing erect, though like Colocynth there is relief from pressure. Sometimes the pains seem to radiate from the abdomen into the back, chest, arms, etc. May be useful in colic from the passage of gall stones; also nephritic colic; menstrual colic; dysmenorrhea. Useful in flatulent dyspepsia. Gastralgia. Haemorrhoids, which look like bunches of red cherries. Diarrhoea with characteristic colic, worse mornings. Seminal emissions from sexual atony. Sciatica, right side; only felt when moving the limb or when sitting; better when lying perfectly quiet. Panaritium (see symptom).

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