A boy of thirteen, becoming overheated while roller skating, sat down on a curb stone to cool off. A severe cold resulted with general aching ; next rheumatism of knees and ankles developed ; worse on motion. Next day it had left the legs and attacked the shoulders and arms. From that point it flew back to the feet, which began to swell.
He had received Bryonia, Lachnanthes, Ledum, etc., according to the symptoms ; but at this point I was confined myself to my home for some days, and had to rely upon the reports of his parents, which were vague and indefinite. They now reported that while the feet continued to swell, the rheumatism was gone, but that now he had pain in his chest ; it hurt him to breathe, was impossible for him to take a long breath. I gave Bryonia, then Cimicifuga upon their representation, without good result ; the boy grew worse. On the sixth day the mother reported that the boy was so weak that he could scarcely speak. I cross-questioned her very closely. Among other things asked, lying upon which side was the pain worse ? “O,” exclaimed the poor, stupid woman, “I forgot to tell you, he can’t lie down at all. He hasn’t lain down for five nights. We have him in a Morris chair. He sits bent forward all night with his head resting in chin strap made of towels.”
A light broke upon me. Then I knew it was no pleurisy I had to deal with, but rheumatism of the heart. I hastened to his home. As I entered the room I was shocked at the pitiful change in the child since I had seen him six days before. The labored gasps for breath could be heard outside the door, the little figure sat bent forward in the Morris chair, face blue, cyanotic, swollen, feet and ankles swollen as big as watermelons ; but the thing that struck me most as I entered was the terrific visible throbbing of the carotids, which could be seen across the room. It was with great difficulty that I could examine his heart ; he could not endure the least touch, and at each attempt gasped, “O, doctor, give me a little more time.” I finally made out a muffled, tumultuous heart sound, as if beating under water. The temperature was 103°, yet there was a great deal of perspiration, urine very scant, no thirst, no appetite. He had only slept short naps for many nights. I feared the boy was dying. There was a time when I would have treated the heart symptoms with Aconite or Kalmia, and the dropsy with Apocynum, and what not, and so zig-zagged a slow cure or a speedy death. But fortunately I knew better now. I knew that every one of these symptoms are summed up under one remedy, and covers every point exactly.
I gave Aurum 10x, dose to be given every three hours. I never saw a more brilliant cure. The first dose was 7 P. M. I requested that they phone me at 11 P. M. that night. At 11 the message came, “Louis is in a drenching perspiration, he has urinated quantities, and his breathing is less labored.” At 8 o’clock the next morning they phoned that he had slept peacefully most of the night though still in his upright position with chin-strap. That night he could recline in the chair, and the next he could lie down in bed. The urine continued in unbelievable quantities, the perspiration rained from him, and the swelling promptly disappeared.
You see what a profound element gold is when homœopathically indicated. The lad made a rapid and complete recovery with no other medication. He received it first in the 10x, then I rose to the 30th, then to 200th, on which I kept him until the poor damaged little heart was quite normal again.
You will recall that every one of the above symptoms are recorded by Hering and Hahnemann in these words :
“Rheumatism which jumps from joint to joint and finally fastens upon the heart. Impossible to lie down. Must sit up bent forward.”
“Visible throbbing of carotids.”
“Face cyanotic, gasps for breath, can hardly speak above a whisper.”
“Much perspiration, as in auric fever.”
“Swelling of feet and limbs.”
Does that not picture the little boy just described ?
REMARKS.- I should say it does, and free to add that it is one of the best cures in homœopathic literature. No routinist or pathological hobby rider would have ever thought of the remedy. Any man who could be convinced of the truth of Homœopathy by a few such cures is, as Artemus Ward used to say, “A obtoose.” (N.)
A case from the clinic of Dr. Nash