This section is from the book "Materia Medica And Therapeutics Inorganic Substances", by Charles D. F. Phillips. Also available from Amazon: Materia medica and therapeutics.
In pustular and erythematous skin diseases, preparations of lime are often very useful. In chronic acne, I have often ordered lime-water, mixed with an equal part of rose-water, and applied three or four times daily with the best results. In ecthyma, it is commended by Mr. Wilson, and in the discharging stages of eczema and impetigo, it makes a useful lotion. In impetigo capitis, and in fissured nipples, lime-water mixed with oil is good. In chronic eczematous and scrofulous disease, lime salts are often useful when given internally (Tilbury Fox speaks well of "saccharated wheat phosphate" in such conditions). Caz-enave thought the chloride good in lupus. In carbuncles and boils, a compress soaked in lime-water and covered with oiled silk, often acts beneficially; it checks inflammation, soothes pain, and promotes suppuration more quickly than ordinary poultices. In erythema and the pruritus of reddened and irritable skin, lime-water has a sedative, moderately con-stringing effect, and may be used either alone, or as a vehicle for other similar remedies. In pruritus pudendi it is often useful when applied freely and tepid, and in osmidrosis it will relieve the unpleasant secretion from the sweat-glands. Dusting powders containing precipitated carbonate of lime are used for erysipelas and erythema, and in cases of much sebaceous secretion, especially about the face. Combined with lard as "chalk-ointment" it is often a good application for indolent and irritable sores. In tinea capitis, after thorough cleansing, lime-water may be brushed in, but as a rule stronger remedies are necessary: a lotion of chloride is more satisfactory. In scabies, a strength of 1 oz. of chloride to 1 pint of water has been found sufficient to cure, but a more dependable preparation is made by boiling together 1 part of quick-lime and 2 of sulphur with 10 of water; this should be constantly stirred till well mixed, and then the liquid poured off for use; it is too strong to be rubbed in like sulphur ointment, but should be applied lightly with a brush, and afterward removed with a warm sponge, if necessary (Lancet, i., 1865). Pharmaceutists now commonly make such a preparation under the name of liquor calcis c. sulphure (vol. i., p. 33).