Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Scatological Medication, article in Western Druggist 1892

Scatological Medication, article in Western Druggist 1892

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Discussing skatological literature, the British Medical Journal says:

Probably most of us who have studied ancient prescriptions, and read with disgust the list of horrible ingredients which patients in the olden time had to swallow, thought that the Greek, Roman and mediaeval physicians had very nasty ideas, and prescribed filthy remedies without any other reason than caprice and the desire to be mysterious. Investigators of folk-medicine are not inclined to dismiss the subject of the pharmacy of the past quite so contemptuously, and, as the ethnologist does not call anything "common or unclean" which throws light on the habits and ideas of the human race, it is scarcely surprising that learned treatises are being written on ordure and urine in medicine. Occult influences have been everywhere ascribed to ordure and urine and other excrementitious remedies. Hair, human saliva, ear wax, human sweat, after-birth and lochia, catamenial fluid, human semen, human blood, brain, moss growing on human skulls, lice, the tartar from human teeth, renal and biliary calculi, human bile, bezoar stones, and a host of other disgusting "remedies" have been used from time immemorial, and some are used at this day as medicines for various ailments. Pills made from the dung of the Grand Llama of Thibet are used as infallible antidotes to disease. From the days of Pliny the dung of almost every kind of animal has been used in medicine. Dog dung mixed with honey was prescribed for sore throat, and wolf dung as an anticolic. Goat dung was considered of great value in tumor of the spleen, and cat dung for gout in the feet. Lion dung was an antiepileptic, and mouse dung in the constipation of children. Dr. Jacob Hunerwolf, in 1694, actually wrote a treatise on mouse dung as a laxative, in which he very highly extolled the remedy. Human urine is considered in many places as a most valuable tonic medicine. Daniel Beckherius ("Medicus Microcosmus," London, 1660,) recommends a drink of one's own urine, taken while fasting, for obstruction of the liver and spleen, for dropsy and jaundice. The urine of boys was recommended in fevers, and a "spirit of urine" was distilled for the gout.

Although "Mark Twain" credits homoeopathy with driving such products from medicine, similar products are used now by homoeopathists alone, and for sale with similar products like psorin or itch pus among the "nosodes" of a homoeopathic pharmacist.

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