"When this is either purely nervous or neuralgic, Sir H. Marsh* found great benefit from small blisters, applied simultaneously to the pit of the stomach and to the spine. In some instances, this treatment was attended with speedy and permanent benefit; in others, the relief was only temporary.
In many acute as well as chronic diseases of the eye, blisters are valuable auxiliaries to other treatment. They may be applied to the temples, behind the ears, or to the nape of the neck; the last position is the most favourable, as it does not interfere with the application of leeches, &c, in the immediate region of the diseased organ. In scrofulous affections of the eye, their use is generally contra-indicated. In Amaurosis, blisters are recommended by Travers, Laurence, and other high authorities. The temples, or the forehead above the eyebrow, are the best situations for them. In Hemeralopia or Night Blindness, Mr. Bampfield states that the most efficacious treatment consists in a succession of small blisters (about an inch and a half in diameter) close to the external canthus of the eye. He states that this plan succeeded in every case of idiopathic Hemeralopia which he treated. In purulent Ophthalmia, blisters behind the ears often prove serviceable.
In Erysipelas, it has been advised by Dupuytren,* and other French surgeons, to apply blisters to the inflamed surface, and they state that the best effects follow their application. Such a course appears dangerous, and in ordinary cases can never be necessary; when, however, as Mr. Liston observes, the translation of erysipelas to any important part has taken place, blisters may be applied to the surface that it has left, or to any other in the neighbour-hood, with a view of recalling the disease to its original and less dangerous situation. In Herpes Zoster, Mr. Plumbe found that the application of a blister over the part where the eruption should next appear, not only checked the extension of the disease, but produced a shrinking of the vesicles already formed, and served to cut short the progress of the disease. It should not be placed over the vesicles, gangrene having, in some cases, supervened upon so doing. (E. Wilson.) In Ringworm, Dr. Maclagan § found a small blister over the affected part soon effected a cure. In Acne Indurata, blistering successive portions of the skin is advised by Biett.
* Dub. Journ., vol. xxiii. p. 452.
Med.-Chir. Trans., vol. v p. 47.
In Sciatica, Dr. Fiorvante found blisters to the heel an effectual cure, in numerous cases. In my own practice, this treatment has proved most successful, move so than any other means with which I am acquainted.
2987. In Tetanus, it has been recommended to apply a blister to the whole length of the spine. In some cases it appears to have a beneficial effect; but, like all other remedies in this formidable disease, it very frequently fails, and it is objectionable on account of the irritation which it causes.
2988. In Hydrarthrosis or Effusion in the Joints, blisters are often strikingly beneficial, and will in some instances effect a cure without the aid of other remedies. A succession of blisters, conjoined with perfect rest of ■ the part, should be enjoined. They are particularly useful in effusion into the knee-joints.
Brodie|| states that he has found a blister of great service. By promoting inflammation, not only of the skin, but of the deeper parts, it facilitates the union, lymph being poured out more freely. It only answers, however, in the superficial bones, and is of little comparative value in fractures of the femur.