Cough may be occasioned by a slight irritation of the air-passages and be simply catarrhal, or it may exist only as one of a group of symptoms, indicating a deep-seated disease of the lungs and throat, or it may be sympathetic, produced by a derangement of some other important viscera.
The character of the cough, and the group of symptoms connected with it, are to be our guide in detecting the seat and severity of the disease, and consequently the appropriate remedy.
The treatment of cough, when it is developed in connection with derangement of important viscera, will be given in connection with those diseases in their appropriate place. We shall here give the indications for several of the prominent remedies, where cough is the principal symptom.
Aconite.* - Violent short cough, with feverish heat and sometimes pain in the chest and difficult breathing.
Deep, hollow cough or loose cough with rattling in the chest, rapid and difficult breathing, feverish sensation; cough with nausea or vomiting. In alternation with phosphorus where there is much pain about the chest (See Pneumonia. See also Influenza and Croup.)
Spasmodic coughs, frequently accompanied with nausea and vomiting, worse at night, or in cold air; oppression of breathing, as if the lungs were filled with mucus; and in children violent coughing until the face becomes livid and the body stiff. (See Hooping Cough.)
Dry, hoarse, or deep cough, frequently excited by talking, stooping, or much exertion; worse at night and aggravated by exposure of any part of the body to the cold. Generally in alternation with Phosphorus.
v. - Dry, spasmodic cough, sometimes producing vomiting, aggravated by damp, cold weather, and worse in the morning or towards evening, accompanied with a burning excoriating pain in the chest. (Alternate with Phosphorus.)
Dry, hoarse, fatiguing or spasmodic cough, worse in the morning and during the day. Oppression of the chest in the night, and on lying down, with a feeling of heat and dryness in the mouth. Cough excited by tickling, scraping sensation with feeling of roughness or rawness in the throat, accompanied with hoarseness, severe pain in the head, and bruised sensation about the stomach. Sometimes aggravated by eating, or meditation, and not unfrequently producing vomiting. Particularly beneficial in persons of an energetic, sanguine temperament.
Particularly in obstinate cases, where the cough is dry, frequently excited by food or a deep inspiration, worse during the night. Cough with expectoration of thick, or fetid mucus, or pus, of a salt or sweetish taste; headache, pain in the chest, abdomen, and loins.
Dry cough, particularly in children, excited by constant tickling in the throat and chest, worse at night, or in the morning and evening, and aggravated by talking; cough during sleep, sometimes with fever, and so violent as to threaten suffocation. Fretfulness, cough after crying, or a fit of passion; fever towards evening.
Bryonia, - Dry catarrhal cough, particularly in winter, and on coming into a warm room, excited by irritation in the throat, and frequently accompanied with shivering, followed by fever, and rheumatic or aching pains in the head and limbs. Dry, nervous cough, or loose cough with yellowish expectoration.
Short, dry cough, excited by tickling in the chest, worse in the evening before midnight, and attended with restlessness and shortness of breath; cough with shooting pains in the side and chest, sometimes with expectoration of blood.
Violent spasmodic cough; dry, short, and hacking cough at night, renewed by the slightest movement; dry cough, almost without intermission, day and night, with redness of the face, and sensation as if something were in the windpipe; pains in the abdomen, neck, and head; frequently an attack of coughing, followed by sneezing.
The symptoms indicating this remedy are similar to Belladonna, which it can follow, if that fails to produce relief. I have found more benefit, however, from Hyoseiamus, where the cough is incessant, worse on lying down, and seems to be excited by a tickling in the throat, sometimes with rattling.
Cough, worse towards evening and in the night, severe pain in the head, as if it would burst, aching throughout the body, and an aching, smarting sensation in the throat, as from eating pepper.
Particularly in persons of a mild or variable temperament Short hacking or shaking cough as from the tickling of a feather. Cough, worse after eating, on lying down at night, or rising in the morning. Dry cough, with running at the nose.
Hoarse, catarrhal cough, with watery discharge from the nose, or diarrhoea, and frequently bleeding at the nose. Dry cough, worse towards evening or in the night, increased by talking, and sometimes attended with retching and expectoration of blood.
Deep, hollow, hoarse cough. Dry, spasmodic cough, worse on lying down and at night, aggravated by laughing, and sometimes followed by retching and vomiting. (See Hooping Cough.)
Cough with expectoration of a sweetish or saltish taste, attended with debility and perspiration. Dry, shaking cough, worse at night, and increased by speaking or laughing. (See Consumption.)
Loose cough after taking cold; cough excited by drawing a deep breath, worse when at rest. Sometimes expectoration of blood.
Severe shaking cough, worse at night, and frequently attended with retching and vomiting. Loose cough with aching in the chest, hoarseness, cold in the head, and expectoration of bitter mucus. (See Influenza.)
Asthmatic cough at night, with pain in the chest, or cough from ulceration of the lungs, or loss of blood. (See Consumption.)
Asthmatic cough and breathing; dry cough worse at night, and sometimes with bloody expectoration, and a burning sensation over the body. (See Asthma.)
Dry, spasmodic cough, worse at night, or on lying down, and sometimes attended with nausea and vomiting. It is particularly useful in persons of a scrofulus constitution, and in chronic cough with thick or puriform expectoration.
Principally in children. Dry, spasmodic cough, pale face, moaning, restlessness, and crying. (See Worms.)
Two drops, or twelve globules, in a tumbler of water, a tablespoonful at a dose; or a powder, or six globules, on the tongue.
In recent cases the remedy may be given once in from two to four hours, until five or six doses have been taken, then wait four or five hours, and if no relief has been produced, select another remedy. In cases which have assumed a chronic character, a dose once in six or twelve hours will be sufficient
The same as in chronic diseases, unless considerable fever is present, when abstain from meats and fatty food. The predisposition to cold can often be overcome by bathing freely every day with cold water. Cough should be taken in hand at once, as cases are by no means rare, where neglected, it has laid the foundation of disease, which has mocked the efforts of human skill to eradicate.
For Croup and Hooping-Cough, see Diseases of Children.