This section of the book is from "The Complete Herbalist" by Dr. O. Phelps Brown. Also available from Amazon: The Complete Herbalist: The People Their Own Physicians By The Use Of Nature's Remedies.
This is a dropsy of the pleura, rarely existing as an independent affection, but generally associated with a general dropsical condition of the system. It is particularly liable to be connected with organic heart disease. When the effusion is slight, only a slight uneasiness is felt in the lower part of the chest, but as it increases, the patient suffers uneasiness in assuming the recumbent posture, a cough and difficulty of breathing being the result. The latter often becomes very severe, the face swells, the cheeks assume a purple and the lips a livid hue, the skin is dry, urine scanty, bowels constipated, thirst, and more or less mental excitement ensues.
TREATMENT. -- If owing to heart disease, that affection should receive special attention. The fluid may be evacuated by means of small doses of elaterium and podophyllum, followed by a free use of chimaphila, galium aparine, and aralia hispids. Other diuretics may also be used, and the general rules of treatment observed as advised in Ascites.