§ 227. Enteritis, mucosa infantum.

This disease is of frequent occurrence among children. It is both acute and chronic. It commences with increased stool, frequently without fever. The evacuations gradually increase in frequency, and are sometimes preceded by restlessness, starting, on account of the pain and convulsions; during the evacuation the children moan and cry. The stools are of a brown-reddish colour, sometimes mixed with bloody, flocculent, slimy, and purulent substances, or they look green and stirred, or they are watery and of a dark colour, or undigested. The anus becomes sore and erythematous; sometimes tenesmus is present, and diarrhoea alternates with constipation. These symptoms are accompanied with burning heat, frequent pulse, bright-red tongue, which afterwards becomes dry and crusty; there is vomiting and constant drinking; tympanitic distention of the abdomen, which is sensitive to pressure, and hot, with decline of strength and loss of flesh; the face is sunken, looks old, with dim and faint eyes, sallow skin. The phenomena of this disease are frequently rendered obscure by symptoms pointing to a cerebral or pulmonary affection.

* These symptoms frequently set in in persons suffering with nervous irritation, and then yield to Aconite, as their most certain specific. - Hempel.

The disease frequently terminates fatally, particularly among new-born infants; but even among larger children it is sometimes very dangerous.

In regard to treatment, I would observe that it should invariably be commenced with Aconite. We know, from thousands of cases of post-mortem examination, that a vast majority of the affections of children are characterized by inflammatory conditions, and that the little beings might have been saved if physicians were more willing to heed all the indications of suffering in the infantile organism. It is true that Hahnemann teaches that the homoeopathic physician need not trouble himself about anything but the symptoms of the disease; but we ought not to forget that both the external and internal phenomena constitute the true and complete character of the disease, and that it is, therefore, the physician's duty to understand this character fully. Although I am an old practitioner, yet I keep up with all the improvements in medicine which lead to a safer and more correct diagnosis, and it is owing to this progressive initiation into the internal conditions of disease that I have accustomed myself to commence the treatment of most of the affections which befal children, with Aconite. This remedy moderates the violence of the symptoms, and frequently removes them altogether.

Next to Aconite, Chamomilla deserves to be recommended, when the thin and fluid discharges from the bowels, or the corrosive discharges of white or green mucus are attended with violent pains, when they occur most frequently at night, and the night's rest is frequently interrupted by cries and starting.

Pulsatilla is indicated by sudden alternation of heat and chilliness, with sleeplessness, except a little slumber towards morning, constant moaning, and frequent discharges of corrosive mucus, with vomiting.

Nux v. and Bryonia are indicated when constipation is present, the latter particularly when the abdomen is sensitive to pressure.

Belladonna and Hyoscyamus may prove useful when the inflammation is sub-acute, or when the inflammatory symptoms are accompanied with periodically-recurring spasmodic phenomena.

Coffea requires to be used as an intermediate remedy, to allay the nervous irritation, which sometimes exceeds the vascular excitement.

For the other remedies, we refer the reader to preceding paragraphs.