The flowers and stems applied locally are non-irritants. Internally it accelerates the pulse, increases its fulness, elevates arterial tension and is truly a stimulating cardiac tonic. It is also stimulating to the spinal nerves and motor centers. It is toning to the heart in simple dilation and muscular atony from deficient innervation and nutrition without organic lesions. It is sustaining in valvular disease with dilatation. In cardiac and general muscular relaxation with impaired nerve energy cactus is toning and strengthening to both heart and nerves. The irritable alcoholic and tobacco heart is sustained by its use and perhaps mainly by its stimulating the spinal motor centers and by its continuous stimulation of the heart's muscular action and thereby increasing its nutrition and development. Chewing tobacco may not produce organic disease of the heart, but it affects the gastric membrane and nerves; and in smoking, carbonic oxide, ammonia and nicotine are inhaled. The ammonia acts on the blood and makes it alkaline and more fluid and hence impairs its nutritive properties. Tobacco leaves the stomach dyspepsied and debilitated. The heart becomes weak, irregular and intermitting. Palpitation, pain, faintness and vertigo follow. Tissue is degraded, vision is more or less impaired, the hands become tremulous and there is a dragging feeling or pain in the region of the heart about the size of a silver dollar.
Cereus may be used continuously without exciting any gastric irritation. Small doses of two to five drops repeated every fifteen to thirty minutes as long as needed will usually give the best results, yet a tea-spoonful may be given if required without any inconvenience or adverse symptoms. Its action is favorable. It regulates the pulse, promotes diastole and diminishes peripheral resistance. In organic cardiac diseases, excluding arythenia, when prompt action is desired and when other cardiac remedies fail, Cereus is a most effective agent.
It is equally useful in functional troubles, regardless of cause, particularly of nervous origin.
It may be taken before, during or after meals, but its influence is best on an empty stomach.
Cereus is quite efficient in mitral and aortic insufficiency, in mitral stenosis and exophthalmic goitre, rheumatism, chorea and mild anaemia. (1)
Cactina is the active proximate principle of Cereus Grandiflora Mexicana. As a heart tonic, Cactina has proven to be of immense value in the treatment of those diseases in which the action of the heart and the circulation are of vital importance. It has no cumulative action and is agreeable to the stomach in all conditions. It is indicated in abnormal heart action, such as tachycardia, palpitation, irregularity, feebleness ; for the cardiac weakness and nervousness caused by the excessive use of tobacco, tea, coffee or alcohol; to support the heart in the treatment of febrile and chronic diseases, and to sustain foetal circulation during gestation. It is frequently employed advantageously to prevent cardiac depression when administering anti-pyretics, anodynes and hypnotics.
Cactina, or any of the preparations of Cereus, is best given with Capsicum as the two together form the best treatment in any heart trouble that is possible to get. The genuine Cactina pellet is made by the Sultan Drug Co., St. Louis, Mo., U. S. A. Guarana - Paulinia Sorbilis. (Dr. Lyle.)
This is a woody climber, bearing a fruit about the size of a large grape and is nearly filled with one or more nuts about the size of hazel nuts. In the Amazon valley it grows wild, but in the Madeira district it is cultivated and presents somewhat the appearance of a vineyard. They ripen in December and open. The nuts are then gathered, roasted, shelled, ground and enough water added to allow it kneaded into doughy rolls about a foot long in which state it comes into market. (1)
Guaranin is the alkaloid. A stimulating tonic nervine for sick headache, where the stomach is not much involved.
Sorbilin is a preparation of the alkaloid guaranin chemically combined in certain proportions with pure bicarbonate of soda. This preparation is sold by the Yale Chemical Co., 26 West 22nd Street, New York City, U. S. A.
"This is an admirable preparation, an innocent reliever of pain. In facial, intestinal and cranial neuralgia it is a superior relief. Also in gastralgia, en-teralgia and ovarian and uterine pains. It assists much in sciatica, rheumatism and insomnia. It sustains the heart and in angina gives quick relief. It soothes and tones the sympathetic and sensory nerves, and in sick-headache if the stomach is not too much at fault there is nothing better. In such cases it may be combined with a drop or so of Lobelia."
The Physio-Medicalist need not have any fear to use this preparation as it is both Physio-Medical and non-poisonous. There are many points in favor of this remedy and it is the best remedy that can be given in all cases of pain. It is claimed that:
1. Sorbilin gives complete relief in a remarkably short time.
2. It does not depress the heart below normal, even when used as an anti-pyretic. It is especially desirable in heart lesions.
3. It leaves no undesirable after effects, so much to be dreaded in the use of opiates or cocaine.
4. It has a wide range of application.
5. It is particularly applicable to the following: Hemicrani, Myalgia, Neuralgia (facial, intercostal and acute), Gastralgia, Hysteralgia, Sciatica, Acute Rheumatism, Sphilitic, Bone-pains, LaGrippe, Pyrexia, and Neurosis, due to irregularities of menstruation, Typhoid and other fevers.
6. The consequent sensation of exhilaration is not more than would naturally come from the sudden release from pain.
7. It is an appropriate, and even more certain, yet harmless, remedy to substitute for Morphia or the Coal-tar analgesics, in every case where these drugs seemed to be indicated.
8. A valuable agent in retarding putrefaction in Typhoid Fever, and especially desirable.
9. In cases accompanied by pain, where a particular treatment is wanted, it may be readily combined in connection with such treatment.