Lungs, in anatomy, denote the two viscera or lobes in the cavity of the breast, by which we breathe. They are connected with the neck, and situated on the right and, left .side of the heart. Being furnished with innumerable cells, which are formed by the descent of the wind-pipe into the lungs, those bronchial tubes communicate with each other and the whole appears not unlike a honey-comb.
The most important use of the lungs is that of respiration, by which the circulation of the blood is supposed to be effected ; and by the consequent alternate pressure of the different parts'of the lower belly, the digestion of food is promoted, Besides, not only thepulsion of the feces and urine greatly depends on the constant action of the lungs, but likewise the sense of smelling is enjoyed by inhaling the air and it is chiefly by the organic structure of these vessels, that mankind are enabled to speak.—Lastly, they perform the-office of excretion, and expel those useless matters which, if retained in the system, would be productive of fatal consequences.
The organs of breathing are subject to various affections, such as Asthma, Catarrh, Cough, etc. which are discussed in their alphabetical series. Hence, we shall at present treat only of the Peripneu.-monia, or Inflammation of the Lungs.—This dangerous affection manifests itself by a moist cough, in which the expectorated matter is frequently streaked with blood -by an obtuse, dull pain under the breast:bone, or between the shoulders.; anxiety and difficulty of breathing ; the face is swelled, and appears of a purplish hue. It chiefly attacks persons of gross habits, who eat strong food, and drink viscid liquors : it is generally fatal to the asthmatic, especially if they be of an advanced age.p>
Causes : An inflammation of the lungs is not always a primary disorder, but more frequently is the consequence of a quinsy, pleurisy, catarrh, and other diseases. It also arises from an obstructed perspiration induced by cold ; from the wearing of wet clothes'; from too violent exercise; fractures or other injuries of the ribs ; suppression of the itch, rose, and other cutaneous eruptions ; as well as from the exhalation of noxious. sulphureous particles ; anil lastly, from worms
The peripueumony is divided into the spurious, which is occasioned by pituitous or viscid matter obstructing the lungs ; and the catarrhal, which may originate from any of the causes already specified, but more especially from a defluxion of thin acrid matter on these organs. The treatment of both, however, being similar, we shall briefly state the chief points relative to this subject.
Without exception, the most efficacious remedy in pulmonary inflammation is blood - letting, which may be performed in either arm; and the quantity of blood to be taken away must be in proportion to the patient's strength.— Leeches may also be advantageously applied; and, if a large portion of blood is to be drawn, it will be safer to have recourse to cupping and scarification, as nearly as possible to the part affected. Next to bleeding, the antiphlogistic or cooling regimen should be strictly adhered to ; the patient not be indulged in feather-beds, or warm couches, as long as he can support himself; and warm diluent drinks, impregnated with vegetable and nitrous acids, should be given in copious draughts.
Poultices and fomentations have also been applied to the painful side with considerable success ; but the repeated use of blisters has been found more effectual. Much, however, depends on an easy expectoration, for which purpose linseed-oil, or other mucilaginous demulcents, are eminently serviceable. De Haen recommends the use of oil mixed with opium ; Dr. Hamilton found the latter drug, when combined with calomel, to be very beneficial in this and other inflammatory diseases; and his experience of this medicine has been amply confirmed.
Among the various remedies proposed with the view of affording relief in the commencement of this formidable disease, few have been more efficacious than the steam of warm water impregnated with vinegar, and copiously inhaled by means of Dr. Mudge's machine, of which we have already given some account, in p. 451 of our 1st volume.—One of the most powerful expectorants, however, appears to be the tartarized antimony, given in very small or nauseating doses. And, as inflammations of this nature frequently terminate in what are called critical and spontaneous sweats, these ought to be cautiously promoted, but without the aid of stimulant medicines.—Lastly, the diet cannot be too slender ; it should, indeed, consist chiefly of weak broths, slightly acidulated with the juice of oranges or of lemons; and the patient's drink ought to be thin water-gruel, sweetened with honey, or a decoction of liquorice, the roots of fennel, and the like, in which a small portion of currant, or similar jelly, may be dissolved.
Inflammation of the Lungs, in Farriery, a disorder to which horses are occasionally subject. It is indicated by the animal's restlessness, as he never lies down during the prevalence of this malady : his fever is violent, and he breathes with difficulty. The mouth is generally open, whence a kind of ropy slime flows copiously, while a viscid reddish or yellowish water runs from his nose, and likewise adheres to the inside of his nostrils. The first remedy in this complaint is bleeding : three English quarts