|BOOKS ON OLD MEDICAL TREATMENTS AND REMEDIES
HOME PHYSICIAN AND ENCYCLOPEDIA OF MEDICINE The biggy of the late 1800's. Clearly shows the massive inroads in medical science and the treatment of disease.
ALCOHOL AND THE HUMAN BODY In fact alcohol was known to be a poison, and considered quite dangerous. Something modern medicine now agrees with. This was known circa 1907. A very impressive scientific book on the subject.
DISEASES OF THE SKIN is a massive book on skin diseases from 1914. Don't be feint hearted though, it's loaded with photos that I found disturbing.
Part of SAVORY'S COMPENDIUM OF DOMESTIC MEDICINE:
19th CENTURY HEALTH MEDICINES AND DRUGS
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Pediculosis pubis, or, as it is sometimes designated, “crab-lice,'’ or
“crabs,” is due to the presence of the pediculus pubis or crab-louse, and
is characterized in most instances by more or less itching about the
genitalia, together with excoriations, papules, pustules, and other in
flammatory symptoms. Cases vary very widely in the amount of
irritation: it may be extremely slight and even wanting, more espe
cially in females, and even when the parasites are present in great
number; or, on the other hand, it may be sufficiently severe to exhibit
a decidedly eczematous aspect. While the irritation and lesions are
practically limited to the pubic region, in some instances the excoria
tions and other lesions are seen extending up on to the lower abdominal
surface. As in the scalp variety, several or more ova can often be found
glued to a single hair-shaft. The parasite may be discovered upon close
examination seated near the root of the hair, clutching the hair, its head
downward, and often slightly buried in the follicle. Sometimes, in
association with the malady involving this region, and occasionally inde
pendently, the crab-louse is found upon other situations, as the hairy
part of the breast, axillæ, the legs, beard, and even the eyebrows and the
eyelashes, producing on these regions similar but variable irritation.
Involving the eyelashes (phthiriasis seu pediculosis palpebrarum)1
the appearances are roughly suggestive of an eczema or blepharitis.
The parasites, looking not unlike minute scabs, can be detected upon
close inspection on the edge of the lid clinging to the hair, and often
with the head somewhat hidden in the follicle. Ova attached to the
eyelashes are quite easily to be seen. A noticeable feature, and one
which first attracts one’s attention, is the presence of the excrement—
1 Both de Schweinitz (Univ. Med. Mag., March, 1889) and Jullien (Annales, 1891,
p. 1006) describe cases and show that it was much more common on this region in
ancient times, citing numerous descriptive accounts by older writers. Several in
stances, of which the first was reported (Arch. Derm., 1881, p. 301), have come under
my notice. Winfield (Jour. Cutan. Dis., 1889, p. 331) reported 4 cases and also reviews
reddish or blackish specks—on and beneath the lower lids, resembling
specks of iron rust.
There are lesions associated with pediculosis pubis known as maculœ
cæruleæ (taches ombrées, taches bleuâtres, of the French). They are
pea- to finger-nail-sized, of a steel-gray tint, not elevated, with no
thickening, and not disappearing upon pressure, consisting, in fact,
simply of stains. They are seen most commonly or typically in those of
clear, white, transparent, skins usually, therefore, predominantly in
blondes; and are found scantily or somewhat abundantly, chiefly on the
sides of the thorax, abdomen, and inner aspects of the thighs and upper
arms. Inasmuch as in the careful hunt for rose-spots in typhoid fever
these lesions were occasionally observed, it was at one time thought they
were peculiar to this malady, but it is now known that they are also
found in association with other diseases, and also independently.1 They
are simply pathognomonic of the presence of the crab-louse.2 The view
held as to the spots being hyperemias or hemorrhages is not supported
by their appearances or behavior. According to Duguet’s successful
inoculation experiments with the crushed crab-louse, they result from
pigment introduced by the parasite in the act of feeding; and which, as
Pellier’s investigations3 also indicate, is secreted directly by the pedicu-
lus. There is, however, a certain predisposition necessary, as they are
by no means observed in all those infested with the pediculus. Duguet
was able to produce the lesion experimentally in all instances in those
who already had them, but only occasionally in others. Both Jamieson
and Payne4 have noted in these cases a remarkable absence of the signs
of scratching or any complaint of irritation.
Pediculosis pubis, as to be readily inferred, occurs chiefly in adults,
although also seen in adolescents. Its contraction is generally believed
to be through sexual intercourse, but this is by no means always so, for
there are many other ways in which the parasite might gain access.
In children the crab-louse seems to have as its special field the eyebrows
The diagnosis of pediculosis pubis is to be based upon the region
involved, itching, variable amount of irritation, papules, excoriations,
etc., and, above all, by the presence of the pediculi and their ova. The
former can be detected upon close inspection close to the skin, grasping
a hair-shaft, with the head usually downward; the ova are easily found
attached to the hairs. It is to be noted that lesions of irritation are
quite frequently to be seen beyond the actual markedly hairy limits.
The fact, too, that the pubic louse may not confine his presence or
1 See Jamieson’s paper (loc. cit.) and that by Leviseur, Jour. Cutan. Dis., 1889, p.
2 The reader interested in the important earlier literature of these spots is referred
to the papers by Moursou, “Nouvelles recherches sur l’origine des taches ombrées,”
Annales, 1877-78, vol. ix, p. 198, and Duguet, “Sur les taches bleues; leur production
artificielle et leur valeur semeiologique,” Gaz. des hôpitaux, April 20, 1880, and An-
nales, 1880, p. 544; and by Duguet and Gibier, “Les taches bleues et le phtirius,”
Compt. rend. d. la soc. de biol., 1882, p. 617, and Annales, 1881, p. 357.
3 Pellier, Monatshefte, 1909, vol. xlviii, p. 56; Tièche, Archiv, 1908, xci, p. 327,
gives good review of the subject of the spots.
4 Payne, Brit. Jour. Derm., 1890, p. 209.
effects to the pubic region alone is to be borne in mind. The features
of the condition elsewhere are, however, practically the same—if the
possibility of such is remembered, a mistake can scarcely occur; the
ova and pediculi are always to be discovered, whether in axillae, on the
short body hair regions, on eyelashes, or on eyebrows.
Treatment.—The classic treatment by blue ointment, while
efficient, is nasty, and often excites a dermatitis or veritable eczema.
The cleanest method is by means of corrosive sublimate lotion, ½ to 2
grains (0.033-0.133) to the ounce (32.). Fournier commends one con
sisting of 1 part of corrosive sublimate, 100 parts alcohol, and 400 parts
water; and also one of 1 part of this drug to 300 parts of vinegar, to be
applied diluted with 1 or 2 parts water. A 5 to 10 per cent, ammoni-
ated mercury ointment or same strength ß-naphthol ointment will also
prove useful. Repeated washings with vinegar or dilute acetic acid or
with alkaline lotions will free the hairs of the ova; a daily shampooing of
the parts will accomplish the same purpose. In cases involving many of
the body or leg hairs, baths of corrosive sublimate can be employed.
Such cases do well with a daily washing with a naphthol-sulphur soap.
In pediculosis palpebrarum the best and quickest plan is to remove the
parasites and ova with small forceps. A weak citrine ointment can also
be carefully applied to the edge of the lids.
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