E. A. Farrington was born in Williamsburg, NY, on January 1, 1847. In 1866 he graduated from the Homeopathic Medical College of Pennsylvania. In 1867 he entered the Hahnemann Medical College, graduating in 1868. He entered practice immediately after his graduation, establishing himself on Mount Vernon Street.
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Stramonium differs somewhat from Belladonna. The mental symptoms which lead us to the choice of the remedy are these: The mania or delirium is of a wild character, the face being of a bright red; the eyes have a wild and suffused look, although they are not as thoroughly congested as under Belladonna. The hallucinations terrify the patient; he sees objects springing up from every corner; animals of every impossible kind arise and terrify him. The patient, if a child, cries for its mother when perhaps she is by it. The eyes are open and the pupils widely dilated. If an adult, he is decidedly loquacious in his delirium. At times he manifests a merry mood in his loquacity, and at others he has the horrors. One moment he will be laughing, singing and making faces, and at another praying, crying for help, etc. He often has photomania or desire for light. He seems to have a perfect fear of the dark. Sometimes he insists upon it that he is conversing with spirits. Sometimes the mania assumes a. silly character. He talks in a foolish and nonsensical manner and laughs at his own attempts at wit. This loquacity differs from that of LACHESIS. In Stramonium the loquacity consists of a simple garrulousness, whereas in Lachesis it is a simple jumping from subject to subject.
AGARICUS seems to stand between Stramonium and Lachesis, having some similarities to both.
A condition simulating that of hydrophobia sometimes calls for Stramonium. In this state any bright object causes furious delirium, spasm of the throat and horrible convulsions.. The delirium, especially in typhoid conditions, is very excessive and seems to exhaust the patient completely.
The spasmodic motions of Stramonium are characterized by gracefulness rather than angularity; they are more gyratory than jerking. Especially is this condition noted in cases of the exanthemata with nonappearance of the eruption in young children. Stramonium acts better on children and young infants than does Belladonna. Take, for instance, a case of measles ; the rash does not come out properly; the child is hot; it tosses about, crying out in a frightened manner as soon as it falls asleep; it knows no one; you notice that its movements, though convulsive, are not jerking and angular, and the face is bright red. This is a case for Stramonium.
Similar to Stramonium in these cases is CUPRUM, which has, like the former remedy, aggravation on arousing from sleep, and this same terror. It is characterized by the violence of its symptoms. The abnormal movements are decidedly angular. The face is apt to be of a bluish color. It is especially indicated when the rash has been repercussed and these violent cerebral symptoms appear.
Another remedy similar to Stramonium is ZINC. This, too, has crying out in sleep and awaking from sleep terrified. There is considerable evidence of debility, the child being so weak that it has not sufficient strength to develop an eruption.
Stramonium is also indicated in locomotor ataxia. The patient cannot walk in the dark or with his eyes closed. If he attempts to do so he reels and staggers. Mental abnormalities as to shape seem to be characteristic of the Stramonium patient. For instance, he imagines that he is very large, or that one arm is very large. Sometimes he feels as if he were double or that he had three legs instead of two. These errors as to shape and size in the Stramonium patient remind you of other remedies, particularly of BAPTISIA, which does not, however resemble Stramonium in other symptoms in the least. It is to be remembered that both of these remedies have these illusions as to shape. The Baptisia patient feels that he is double or, what is more characteristic, that his body is scattered about and he must try to get the pieces together. Other remedies have this symptom ; we find it under PETROLEUM and THUJA. Under the latter remedy the patient imagines that he is made of glass and he walks very carefully for fear that he will be broken.
During the delirium of the Stramonium patient he frequently attempts to escape, as under all the narcotics.
In erysipelas, with involvement of the brain, you may find Stramonium rather than Belladonna indicated when the disease assumes an adynamic type. The symptoms are very much like those of Rhus tox., but you distinguish it from the latter by the violent cerebral symptoms, the delirium, the restlessness and the screaming out as if terrified.
As in all remedies that irritate the brain, we find grinding of the teeth. We may also find stuttering, which, by the way, has been compared to the spasmodic urination of children, when the least excitement will cause them to pass urine in little jets; in a similar way are the words jerked out. Particularly does the patient find it difficult to combine vowels with consonants.
Another remedy for stuttering or stammering is BOVISTA.
The tongue of the Stramonium patient is red or whitish and covered with fine red dots, and is dry and parched. In some cases it is swollen and hangs out of the mouth.
Stramonium may excite a decided nymphomania, during which the woman, though very chaste when in her normal condition, becomes exceedingly lewd in her songs and speech. She may become very violent in her manner. Often these symptoms occur in women before menstruation, in which case Stramonium acts most admirably. The menstrual flow is apt to be very profuse, showing that it is the high degree of congestion that produces the nymphomania. There is a strong odor about these women reminding one of the odor of animals in the rutting season.
I would also like to call your attention to the diarrhoea which Stramonium cures. The stools are very offensive, smelling almost like carrion. They are apt to be yellowish. They may or may not be dark, but the offensiveness is the most important symptom.
Absence of pain is characteristic of Stramonium excepting in abscess, particularly when it affects the left hip-joint, in which case it may be so intense as to throw the patient into convulsions.
The antidote for Stramonium poisoning is lemon-juice.