468. In Delirium Tremens, Belladonna Occasionally Proves Useful

A very aggravated case is related by Mr. Flood,** in which opium, tartar emetic, and other remedies, had tailed to produce any mitigation of the symptoms, but in which Belladonna, employed in the following manner, exercised a very decided influence: - A large blister having been placed between the scapulAe, the cuticle was removed from a space three inches long by two wide, and a plaster of the pure Extract of Belladonna applied to the denuded surface. The patient, who at the time of the application had not slept for twelve days, was in a state of furious delirium, the pupils contracted, pulse 110. Within nine minutes from the first application of the Belladonna, he was completely subdued; the pupils dilated to their fullest extent, and he fell into a deep sleep, which lasted for seven hours. When he awoke, he was quite rational. Two days after, the symptoms returning, the application was repeated with the Fame good effect. The patient perfectly recovered. Another case is mentioned by Dr. Greive,* in which the Extract rubbed in on the eyelids had a remarkable effect in alleviating the symptoms and procuring sleep. In this case there was marked contraction of the pupils.

* On the Use of Belladonna in Disorders of the Face, &c. 1818. Lancet, vol. ii. 1842-13, p. 830. Ibid., Oct. 7, 1S43. § On Tic Douleureux, Lond. 1844.

|| Mem. Soc. Ital. Scienza Modena, t. xvii. ¶ Lancet, May 25, 1844. ** Ibid., vol. ii. 1842-43.

469. Diseases Of The Eye

Belladonna, from its property above-mentioned of dilating the pupil, is a valuable agent in the treatment of diseases of the eye and in ophthalmic surgery. It assists materially in allowing the surgeon a fuller view of the disease thereby affording further scope for his manipulations. Dilatation of the pupil by means of Atropine or Belladonna is a necessary preliminary to examination with the ophthalmoscope.

470. In Iritis, whether Syphilitic or Idiopathic, it is of importance to keep the edge of the Iris free, and to allay the deep-seated pain which so generally accompanies this disease. Both these indications are answered by the Extract of Belladonna, which may be smeared around the eye, or a drop or two of a filtered solution (gr. xx., Aq. fl. oz. j.) may be dropped into the eye. The extracts of Stramonium or Henbane may be substituted.

471. In deep Ulcers of the Cornea, it is desirable that the pupil should be well dilated, in order to prevent the Iris becoming implicated in the ulcerative process. This is particularly necessary when the ulcer is situated near the centre of the cornea. The Extract should in these cases be applied to the eyebrows or eyelids.

472. In Cataract, Many Advantages Are Derived From Belladonna

It is generally admitted that an operation for Cataract should be deferred until the Cataract is mature; that is, until the sight has totally failed. To ascertain this point, a drop or two of a filtered solution of the Extract (gr. xx., Aq. fl. oz. j.) should be dropped into the eye, night and morning, so as to dilate the pupil fully. When, after this application, the patient is unable to distinguish objects, the Cataract may be considered mature, and the time arrived for an operation. Previous to having recourse to this manipulation, the solution (as above) may be dropped into the eye, to allow the operator a full view of the seat of disease, and to facilitate the operation.

473. In Rheumatic Inflammation of the Eye, a great amount of relief is derived from the daily application of an ointment, composed of equal parts of Ext. BelladonnAe and Ung. Hydrarg. Fort., to the eyebrows and temples.