See Sphincter ani. There is also a nerve so called. See Cervicales.

Cutaneus internus servus. It rises from the union of the seventh cervical, and first dorsal pairs, runs over the other brachial nerves, and passes down on the inside of the arm, between the muscles and integuments; it divides into two branches, which accompany one another as far as the inner condyle on one side of the vena basilica, being covered by the ramus medianus of that vein; then runs down towards the wrist, where it spreads, and on the beginning of the palm of the hand. The other branch passes backward along the integuments, and down to the little finger. Cutch. See Terra Japonica. Cuticula, (a dim. of cut's, the skin). The scarf skin. The Greeks call it epidermis, because it is placed upon the true skin as a covering. It is more compact than the true skin, full of pores for the evacuation of what transpires through it from the body, though the best glasses do not enable us to discern them: it hath neither blood vessels nor nerves, therefore it is void of sense. Dr. Hunter thinks it an organised body, though its organization cannot be demonstrated; and there is not the slightest reason from its functions or diseases to consider it as such. The pores described by Leuwenhoeck have not been found by later observers. When abraded it is rapidly reproduced, and is greatly thickened by pressure, either external or from tumours below its internal surface.

The integuments, or the universal covering of the body, are the cuticle, the rete mucosum, the cutis, and the membrana cellularis: besides these, the old anatomists reckon the membrana communis musculorum, which does not exist; and the panniculus carnosus, which is only found in brutes. The rete mucosum is added by the moderns, and is found between the skin and the cuticle.

The cuticle is continued only over all the external parts of the body: in the cavities, as in the mouth, oeso-phagus, aspera arteria, intestines, etc. it becomes almost imperceptible, and not to be distinguished from the cutis vera. The external covering of these internal parts is called the epithelium; and the surface is rendered irregular by innumerable papillae. No nerves nor vessels can be demonstrated to exist in the true cuticle.

In examining the pores, the cuticle seems to insinuate itself into them, to complete the excretory tubes of the cutaneous glands. The fossulae of the hairs have likewise the same productions of the cuticle, and it seems to give a sort of coat to the hairs themselves.

The best method of separating the cuticle for examination is to macerate it in water, or to suffer some putrefaction to take place.

The cuticle is a medium betwixt the skin and the subjects of feeling, and moderates the impressions, which, without it, would be too painful. It is also said to moderate the perspiration, which, without it, would be too copious. This, however, is hypothetical. It seems to be a sheath which, in some degree, compresses the whole body, and gives a tone to the extreme vessels. To its relaxation the effects of warm bathing, a moist or a humid atmosphere, have been attributed. Yet, as a simple solid, it can be but inconsiderably contracted by cold or expanded with heat; and though we cannot deny it some power as a counterpoise to the distention of the subcutaneous vessels, that power is probably trifling.

The cuticle is very incorruptible, even when the subjacent parts are destroyed by sphacelus; and suffers the effect of caustics to act on the subjacent parts without itself being destroyed.

The colour of the cutis differs in different persons, and also in different parts of the same person; but it is owing to the difference in the rete mucosum that complexions are so opposite to one another. See Edinburgh Med. Essays, vol. iv. page 79.

In the second volume of the Medical Museum is a remarkable instance of a young man losing the use of his hands, by the cuticle being thickened and hardened in an extraordinary degree. He was a dyer, and by frequently cleaning brass wire in the mixture, which consists of the oil of vitriol, tartar, and alum, this complaint was gradually produced. His hands were quite stiff from the hardness of the cuticle; and on endeavouring to straighten the fingers by force, blood started from every joint. As the acid seemed to contribute much to the disease, an emollient liniment, with equal parts of olive oil and aqua kali, was ordered. After a few days one half of the aqua kali was omitted, and the yolks of two eggs added. By this means the hardened cuticle began to peel off; a new flexible one appeared underneath; he began to have some use of his fingers; and, after little more than two months, he obtained a perfect cure.