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Two cafes, one of Hydatides coughed up from the Lungs; the other, of fudden Death from a Rupture of the Vena Cava, are next related by Dr. Doubleday of Hexham.
They are fucceeded by an Account of the Tree producing the Terra Japonica, in a letter from Mr. James Kerr of Bengal, communicated by Dr. Fothergill. To the defcription of the plant are added fome curious particulars concerning the use made of it by the natives of the country where it is produced.
The 17th Article is an effay on the Management proper at the Ceflation of the Menjes. By Dr. Fothergill. Its defign is to remove those groundless apprehenfions of the great hazard attending this period of female life, which have arifen from erroneous and abfurd notions concerning the nature of the menftrual discharge; and to lay down fuch a plan of treatment, varied according to particular circumftances, as may enable the young practitioner to conduct his patients fafely and easily thro' this conftitutional change. The many judicious and important obfervations which compofe this treatife, render an abridgment impracticable. It is fufficient for us to obferve that they evidently appear to be the refult of attentive experience and mature reflexion.
An Account of a fingular Caries of the Skull is next given by' Mr. Wathen, Surgeon. It is accompanied with two plates, exhibiting a moft formidable appearance of disease indeed, which it is scarcely conceivable how a human creature could fupport, as this patient did, for a confiderable time, with very little general complaint.
Article the 19th is a cafe of Hydrophobia, very particularly defcribed by Dr. Fothergill. A gentleman and his fervant maid were bit by a mad cat. They both took the celebrated Ormfkirk antidote, conformably to the directions given by the vender. About two months after, the gentleman was attacked with the dreadful disorder, the fatal event of which is here related. The fervant, who yet was first bitten, and one would therefore suppose must receive a greater proportion of the virus, remained free from complaint. The only caufe that can be affigned for this difference, is, that the wound in the girl's leg turned to an ulcer, which remained open for a long time, whereas the mafter's healed presently. From this circumftance fome practical inferences are deduced; and the Doctor farther pursues his reasoning on the subject in fome additional Remarks on the Treatment of Perfons bit by mad Animals, contained in the 26th paper. The general tenor of thefe is, to inculcate the propriety of using all our endeavours, by excifion of the bitten part, dilating the wound with the knife or cautery, fuction, cupping, and the like, to prevent the first abforption of the poifon into the blood; a mode of practice the more neceffary,
fince the inefficacy of every prophylactic remedy hitherto propofed is now evinced by unquestionable facts.
In the 20th paper, Dr. Cooper communicates to the Society a fecond inftance of the performance of the Cæfarian operation. A gradually advancing diftortion and foftening of the spine and pelvis, originating from a violent rheumatic fever, brought on, after feveral very difficult labours, the unhappy neceffity of having recourfe to hyfterotomy as the only poffible means of delivery. The operation proved fatal to the mother; but the child was alive, perfectly well, and about four months old, at the time of drawing up this relation.
Articles 21 and 22, are cafes of the Angina Pectoris, with Remarks, by Dr. Fothergill. The diffections are given of two perfons who died of this difeafe; and a number of circumstances are noted, which, all together, contribute to throw much additional light on its nature. But although it may now be ranked among the known and well defined maladies, little encouragement is obtained to hope that it can be effentially relieved by medicine. The means which Dr. Fothergill recommends as at leaft likely to palliate the moft urgent fymptoms, and retard the fatal event, appear judiciously adapted to the nature of the diforder, as far as it is yet inveftigated, and deferve the attention of practitioners.
Article 23, is a remarkable Cafe of the Softness of Bones, by Mr. Henry Thomfon, Surgeon to the London Hofpital.
The two next, by Dr. Percival of Manchefter, containing tables relative to the mortality from the fmall-pox and measles, have been offered to the Public in the third volume of that Author's Experimental Effays: of which volume an account will foon be given in our Review.
Some very curious Experiments and Obfervations on the Urine in a Diabetes, by Dr. Dobfon of Liverpool, are communicated in the 27th paper. The Author remarks that the fweetnefs of urine, which by fome writers has been accounted a diagnostic fign of this difteafe, has by others been denied to exift. Int nine diabetic patients, however, he found that the urine was always fweet in a greater or lefs degree; and in one of them this quality was fo remarkable as to give rife to the experiments and obfervations here related. This perfon paffed the amazing quantity of 28 pints of urine in the 24 hours. Some of it fet by in an open veffel, in the heat of 52 degrees of Fahrenheit's thermometer, underwent a fermentation which was evidently of the vinous kind; this at length changed to the acetous, and laftly to the putrid. This urine was neither coagulated by the boiling heat, nor by admixture of the mineral acids. On evaporating two quarts to drynefs, a white cake was obtained weighing 3iv. 3ij. and ij. which was granulated, broke eafily
between the fingers, and neither by fmell nor tafte could be diftinguished from fugar, except that it left a flight fenfe of coolness on the palate. It did not effervefce on the addition of acid elixir of vitriol; but a more concentrated vitriolic acid occafioned an effervefcence, with fumes which had the pungent smell of the marine acid. Several very ingenious obfervations and queries are deduced from thefe and other experiments, which lead the Author to confider the diabetes as a species of imperfect digeftion or affimilation, and a disease of the system in general, rather than of the liver, or fecretory veffels of the kidneys, as fome have fuppofed it.
The Culture of the White Poppy, and Preparation of Opium, in the Province of Babar, is next defcribed by Mr. Kerr of Bengal. As this Article may afford entertainment and inftruction to a much larger class of Readers than thofe of the faculty, we shall infert it at length:
SOIL.-The foil of Bahar confifts of clay, and a large proportion of cryftalline and calcareous fand. In many places white glimmer (mice) abound, in other calcareous grits, which the natives burn into lime; upon the furface natrum, nitre, and alimentary falt frequently vegetate, and felinitic falt is often found.
The earth is of a pale colour, readily diffufing in the mouth, effervefcing violently with the nitrous acid, which quickly diffolves the calcareous particles.
CULTURE.-The field being well prepared by the plough and harrow, and reduced to an exact level fuperficies, it is then divided into quadrangular areas of feven feet long, and five feet in breadth, leaving two feet of interval, which is raifed five or fix inches and excavated into an aqueduct for conveying water to every area, for which purpose they have a well in every cultivating field.
The feeds are fown in October or November. The plants are allowed to grow fix or eight inches distant from each other, and are plentifully fupplied with water. When the young plants are fix or eight inches high, they are watered more fparingly. But the cultivator ftrews all over the areas a nutrient compoft of ashes, human excrements, cow-dung, and a large portion of nitrous earth, fcraped from the highways and old mud walls. When the plants are nigh flowering, they are watered profufely to increase the juice.
"When the capfules are half grown, no more water is given, and they begin to collect the opium.
At fun-fet they make two longitudinal double incifions upon each half-ripe capfule, paffing from below upwards, and taking care not to penetrate the internal cavity of the capfule. The incifions are repeated every evening, until each capfule has received fix or eight wounds; they are then allowed to ripen their feeds. The ripe capfules afford little or no juice. If the wound was made in the heat of the day, a cicatrix would be too foon formed.-The night-dews, by their moisture, favour the exftillation of the juice.
Early in the morning old women, boys, and girls, collect the juice, by fcraping it off the wounds with a fmall iron scoop, and depofit the whole in an earthen pot, where it is worked by the hand in the open fun-fhine, until it becomes of a confiderable fpiffitude: it is then formed into cakes of a globular shape, and about four pounds in weight, and laid into little earthen bafins to be further exficcated. These cakes are covered over with the poppy or tobacco leaves, and dried until they are fit for fale. Opium is frequently adulterated with cow dung, the extract of the poppy-plant procured by boiling, and various other fubftanees which they keep in fecrecy.
USE and ABUSE.-The feeds are fold in the markets, and are reckoned delicious eating; they are used in emulfions, and enter into the cooling prefcriptions of the Hindoftan phyficians.
Opium is here a confiderable branch of commerce. There are about fix hundred thousand pounds of it annually exported from the Ganges, most of which goes to China and the Eastern Islands, where it is ufually fold from two Spanish dollars and a half, to fix or seven dollars per pound. But the poor cultivator is obliged to fell his opium for less than half a dollar per pound, and pay out of that his rent, taxes, fervants, and all charges. This may feem incredible to those who have not confidered what monopolies can produce.
The good and bad uses of opium are well known, and described in European books: the natives apply it to the fame purposes, only they make a bolder use of it: they take it internally as a cordial, by which they are agreeably inebriated at a small expence. It is fup. pofed to give vigour and courage, and is taken previous to all daring and arduous attempts; but too frequent use of it emaciates the perfon, and a languid ftupefaction appears in his countenance.—In the late famine 1770, it was purchased by the unhappy fufferers at exorbitant prices, to allay the cravings of hunger, and to banish the dreadful profpect of death. Opium is beat up with a few cooling feeds in form of a cataplafm, fpread upon a leaf of the Ricinus, and applied to tumefied glands, particularly to difcufs fwelled testicles; for which purpose it is not inferior to any European prescription.
The Chinese smoke opium with their tobacco as the greatest delicacy; and after the ceremony of falutation, it is the first compli ment paid to a visitor or stranger.
The Melays both fmoke and chew opium to excefs.
I have omitted the defcription of the plant, as it is to be found in every botanical writer: it is the papaver somniferum of Linnæus : it grows in Britain without care, to be a much fatelier plant than in this country with the utmost art. Opium may probably be produced in Britain or America upon grounds of little value, and give employment to the aged and young, who are unfit for laborious work. One acre yields fixty pounds of opium, which valued only at nine fhillings per pound, gives 27 1. per acre produce.
Art. 29, is an account of the Amputation in the Ankle with a Flap, by Mr. James Lucas, Surgeon in Leeds. A lift of nine patients on whom it was performed in the Leeds Infirmary is given, with fome remarks on the cafes, and on the operation
in general. Although the cure feems to have been tedious in all these inftances, yet Mr. Lucas gives his teftimony in favour of the operation, on account of the advantages refulting from the power of preffing the ftump, when healed, against the bottom of the artificial boot; without which, fuch a machine as preferves the use of the knee joint can fcarcely be ufed,
In the 30th, Mr. Ford, Surgeon in London, gives an account of an extraneous Body cut out from the Joint of the Knee. The operation was attended with perfect fuccefs; but it may not be improper to infert a note fubjoined to this paper by the Medical Society:
"The Society have been informed of feveral cafes in which this "operation has been performed; fome, like this, have healed up, "without any trouble; others have been followed with violent in"flammation, fever, and death itself. And a diligent obferver of "such cases thinks, that the fuccefs in fome, is owing to the healing "of the wound by the first intention, and that the danger and fatality "of others proceeds from a fuppuration coming upon the wound, "which prefently diffufes itself over the whole cavity of the joint "and adjacent parts. And, therefore, that befides fuch chirurgical management as may be thought beft for keeping the lips of the "wound in perfect contact, the limb fhould be kept immovable, "and as in this cafe, every thing fhould be avoided that can either "irritate the part, or heat the body."
Article 31, is the cafe of an encysted Tumour in the Scrotum, which took its Origin from the Urethra, and contained a great Number of calculous Concretions as well as Urine; by Mr. Jofeph Elfe.
Then follows a cafe of Suppreffion of Urine from a Slough in the Urethra, by Mr. John Andree.
Some further Remarks on the Treatment of Confumptions, by Dr. Fothergill, are contained in the next Article. They are defigned as fupplemental to an excellent paper on the use of refinous medicines in this complaint, communicated to the Public by the fame Author, in the laft volume of Medical Obfervations. The fubjects of the prefent effay are others of the capital remedies employed in phthifical cafes; the bark-elixir of vitriol-repeated bleedings-veficatories-Bristol water-change of air and climate-and exercife. It is impoffible for us to give an abridged view of a fet of obfervations, related with all poffible concifenefs, unconnected by any fyftematic plan, and very various in their fubjects. Practitioners will, we doubt not, receive much pleasure and improvement from the fentiments of fo eminent a physician on these interesting topics.
Dr. Fothergill clofes this volume, to which he has contributed fo liberally, with Obfervations on Disorders to which Painters in Water-colours are expofed. He had frequently found artifts in this branch violently afflicted with the difeafe ufually diftinguished by the name of Colica Pictonum. This he was led,