A large number of drugs act upon the bowels; cathartics is a technical name for these. Only a few of them need to be considered in connection with our present plan.

Rhubarb is adapted to a greater variety of cases than any other medicine for the simple purpose of relieving constipation. Simple syrup of rhubarb is very good for this use with babies. Younger yet, however (under a year), sweet oil (olive oil) is mildest of all, unless it be manna or glycerine Fluid extract of senna, with one drop of oil of aniseed or oil of fennel in a teaspoonful of it, is also a good infantile laxative. Castor oil comes 488 next, when a more active purge is wanted; or, when there is sourness of stomach, magnesia.

At any age, magnesia is the best antacid laxative. Castor oil is to be preferred when colic or irritation of the bowels is present. [Give it in twice as much spiced syrup of rhubarb, well mixed up.]

Saline purgatives are useful generallv at an early time of attacks of sickness with fever. Take citrate of magnesium or Tar-rant's Aperient. Seidlitz powders are of similar cooling effect; and the same is true of Rochelle salt and cream of tartar. Pullna and Hunyadi mineral waters please the taste of some.

At the beginning of acute attacks of disease with fever, the use of some purgative medicine, especially of the saline kind, is very serviceable and important. This is true, as a rule, of measles, scarlet fever, whooping-cough, small-pox, and varioloid; and, with more discrimination of cases and moderation in doses, also of diphtheria and typhus fever. Typhoid fever has diarrhoea as an early symptom generally. If, in it, the bowels are exceptionally costive, only a tea-spoonful of castor oil had better be ventured upon to relieve the bowels. In measles the bowels sometimes incline to be too free; but this should not prevent our making sure of their full movement during the first two or three days. When, after that, they become too loose, a weakening excess of purging may be checked by suitable means, such as will be presently mentioned.

For habitual costiveness, either chewing at bedtime a small piece of Turkey rhubarb root (as big as a pea), or taking at that time a rhubarb pill, will be the best thing to begin with. If that fails, take another piece, or another pill, also before breakfast.

Compound rhubarb pills are stronger ; they will, with most people, purge rather actively. Compound cathartic pills, of the United States list, are too strong to use except when a very decided purgation is needed.

Often, when the mildest and least disturbing way of emptying the lower bowel is required, an enema (injection into the bowels) will be the best. For this, a simple and generally satisfactory mixture will be made by dissolving a thumb-sized piece of

Practically speaking, of blue pill, a small dose for indigestion, with signs of participation by the liver, will be one grain at night, and again the next morning ; and perhaps again the second night. Compound gentian pills may be taken for two or three days, if entire relief does not come sooner. This is the prescription :

Take of blue mass, five grains ; powder of rhubarb root, and extract of gentian, each twenty grains; oil of cloves, four drops. Mix these together, and divide the whole into twenty pills. One or two should be taken at once.

When there is lingering indigestion, after an attack, with some flatulence, the bowels not being sufficiently free, yet not requiring a strong purge, two of the above pills may be taken, twice daily, for two or three days ; not longer at one time, on account of their containing a small amount of mercury.