viij. of powdered Cantharides in fl. oz. iv. of Acetic Acid for twenty-four hours, and then percolating the mixture with Oj. of Ether till fl. oz. xx. are obtained). Employed for the purpose of blistering. One application is generally sufficient. It is much more effectual as a blistering agent than the Acetum Cantharidis (Pharm. Lond.). The latter, however, may be advantageously employed as a rubefacient. The Linimentum Cantharidis should be used with caution.
j.; Yellow Wax oz. j.; Olive Oil fl. oz. vj.). An irritant dressing for blisters, issues, &c.
Occasional Symptoms. Salivation, vomiting of tenacious mucus, or apparently of the mucous membrane itself, redness of the eyes, lachrymation, and violent nausea.
Post-mortem appearances. Inflammation of the whole alimentary canal, and of the urinary and genital organs; the brain gorged with blood. The powder of Cantharides has been found in the stomach, nine months after death.
The smallest quantity of the Tincture which has proved fatal is fl. oz. j.; of the powder, 48 grains; in two doses of 24 grains each. Fatal effects have followed its external application to the skin, the active principle being absorbed into the system. (Dr. Guy.)
Treatment of an over-dose. Copious diluents, vomiting by emetics, or warm liquids, emollient and opiate enemas, opiates by mouth, bleeding (local or general), and strict antiphlogistic diet.
* Med. Chir. Rev. No. lx. p. 603. Forensic Medicine.
Dewees* places much confidence in the internal use of Tincture of Cantharides. He commences with a dose of gutt. xx., and gradually increases the quantity to gutt. xxxv. or xl. If it does not succeed in these doses, he does not consider that it will prove ultimately useful.
695. In Lencorrha, the internal use of Cantharides was first recommended in 1806, by Dr. Robertson, of Edinburgh. He relates ten obstinate cases which yielded to its use. It was afterwards successfully employed by Dr. Dewees, who speaks in the highest terms of its efficacy. He advises the Tincture to be persevered in, until it produces slight strangury, which he considers a favourable symptom, although the medicine must be discontinued when this is first observed. Dr. D. Davis§ was a strong advocate for the employment of Cantharides in Leucorrha. The following is a summary of his experience in the use of this remedy: -
1. Preparations of Cantharides have an undoubted remedial power, proving eventually perfectly curative of many varieties of Leucorrha.
2. They sometimes exert their remedial power without occasioning strangury or any other visceral disturbances; but they frequently give rise to these symptoms, which, however, are of a temporary nature, and completely yield to emulsions, mucilaginous drinks, fomentations, &c.
3. The Tincture is the best form: of this, 20 drops may be taken in a demulcent draught three times a-day at first; the dose may be subsequently increased to 40 or 50 drops, until it produce slight tingling of the parts, when it may be suspended, or the dose diminished.
4. The average period of cure is about four months; some yield in five or six months; in a few cases it exceeded a twelvemonth.
5. The general recovery has been rapid or tedious, as the malady has been of longer or shorter duration, before the commencement of treatment.
6. In a great number of cases, not only has the Leucorrha been removed, but the tone and functions of the uterine system have been greatly restored.
7. The administration of Cantharides is as safe during menstruation as at other times.
696. In Incontinence of Urine dependent on an atonic state of the bladder, the Tincture of Cantharides may often be given with excellent effect. It appears to act locally upon the urinary organs, stimulating the parts, and restoring to the bladder its healthy tone. In a case recorded by Dr. Roots,* he administered it in doses of exv., every six hours, suspended in mucilage. Although a long standing case, a perfect cure was effected in a few days. In Impotence, it is occasionally employed as a stimulant of the generative organs. It is of doubtful efficacy.
* Diseases of Females, p. 122. Treat. on the Powers of Cantharides, 8vo. 1806.
Op. cit. p. 75.
§ Obstetric Medicine, 2nd Ed. p.