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DAPHNE MEZEREUM-MEZEREON-SPURGE OR PURGE OLIVE.
(Mezereum, from the persian, mazariyun, the chamellia, Daphne, the laurel, or rather the bay-tree) Mezereum, a shrub three two four feet in height,with very fragrant red flowers, is native of Northern and Central Europe. It was first proved by Hahnemann, and it is of interest to know that associated with him as one of the provers was Constantine Hering, who at that time was a medical student at Leipzig. For many years members of the senior class of this college used to go to Philadelphia to call on and pay their respects do Dr. Hering, the eminent homoeopath and former student of Hahnemann's Dr. Hering died in Philadelphia, July 23, 1880. Mezereum was first used by the old school in the attempt to find something to replace mercury in the treatment of syphilis. At the present time the best that they have to say of it is, that it is"reported to be useful in syphilis" (Ringer).
We use mezereum, with success, in certain syphilitic conditions and in periosteal pains, whether syphilitic or otherwise, but our most frequent call for the remedy is in cutaneous affections. Mezereum is useful for the bad effects of mercury (139) and it is an excellent antidote "especially," says Farrington, "when the mercurial poisoning has invaded the nervous system and neuralgia has developed." There is apt to be in Mezereum an aggravate from heat (8), and this is especially noticeable in the neuralgia and the sin lesions. In the head we have "bone pains in the skull" (Chr. Dis), or pains involving the periosteum of the vertex and occiput, with sensitiveness of the parts to touch (91), but it is of particular sensitiveness of the parts to touch (91 The pains may be burning, boring (106) or jerking and are worse at night and from heat (95). We have supraorbital (76) and infraorbital neuralgias, with great sensitiveness of the parts to touch (91), the pains followed by numbness (146). The pains often extend from the head to the eye, causing profuse lachrymation, to the teeth, involving both upper and lower jaws, and may even extend down to the shoulder. I can get to satisfactory description of these pains from any author that I have had access to. What has been given is from the Handbook and is the best that I could find, but it does not satisfy wholly as it fails to lay sufficient stress on the4 severity of the symptoms. I can add but little as I have never been able to get a good description of the pains from a patient. They appear to be overpowering and the most that the sufferer seems able to say,when you ask what the pain is like, is to use the word "awful." There is no excitement, as there is belladonna and Glonoine; they do not thrash around in bed, as they do in mg. carb. and mag phos; they do not cry, as we see in Pulsatilla, nor lay all the blame on the doctor as we get in Ignatia, but they lie perfectly still and respond only to questions that can be answered by yes or no. You will find that the pains are on one side (one the r. it often seems, but the pathogenesis given on one side a decided preference), or ever the whole head; the teeth are apt to be affects, and if in addition I find that the malar bons are attached (80) and very sensitive to touch, I feel that Mezereum is the remedy. It is very valuable for neuralgia of the face and head following herpes zoster (116). There is toothache, especially in decayed teeth (187), with burning,boring pains, involving the bones of the face and head, and temporarily better when drawing cold air into the mouth (187). it is of value for periostitis of the lower jaw, with swelling and burning pain. In the eye we have twitching of 1.upper lid 979) and of the muscles of the r. cheek" (Chr. Dis), which may of may not be associated with neuralgic pains. It is useful in ciliary neuralgia (75), wit radiating pains, a feeling of cold air against the eyeball (77) and especially with soreness of the bones of the orbit. It is also useful for ciliary neuralgia after operations, especially after removal of the eyeball. In the ear it is of value in chronic inflammation of he middle ear, with feeling as if cold air were blowing against the dry, and for eczema behind the ears (64), with itching that is worse at nigh and from heat. In ozaena (148) it is of great value, whether due to syphilis or hot, with burning pains in the bones or the nose and face and sensitiveness to touch (142). It is useful in syphilitic ulcerations of the pharynx, larynx and esophagus, with dryness, soreness and burning, which latter is relieved by drawing in cold at through the mouth. In the stomach Mezereum presents at least one point of great interest,and that is in reference to gastric ulcer (181). Many cases of ulcer of the stomach have been cured or greatly relieved by this remedy, always with uneasiness, rawness or burning (178) in the stomach, temporarily better from eating (174), hence constant desire to eat. In the diarrhoea calling for this remedy, the stools are sour (59), watery and undigested (60),sometimes unaccompanied by colic, and followed by chilliness (61). This diarrhoea is often found in children having the Mezereum scalp eruptions, which will be spoken of later. In constipation the stools are dark brown and very hard (35), with a feeling as if they would split the anus on passing, followed by blood (34) and stitches in rectum, and it times with prolapsus (160). Mezereum is useful for gleet (83)., with watery discharge, worse from exercise,and with soreness and burning, particularly in the anterior portion of the urethra. It is of value in periosteal inflammation of the long bones, the femur and especially the tibia, with soreness and intolerance of touch, and with violent burning pains worse at night. with this inflammation of the periosteum, there is tendency to erysipelatous swelling and to suppuration. It is to be thought of for varicose4 ulcers (205) of the leg, surrounded by bluish-red discoloration (206), with great sensitiveness, and the slightest pressure causes the most intense burning pain. Mezereum is of great value for herpes zoster (114), with great itching and burning and the characteristic eruption of the remedy, and especially for the neuralgia following herpes, whether intercostal (120) or of the head (100) or face (116), with the general conditions of extreme sensitiveness to pressure, burning pains, and aggravation at night and from heat. We now come to the skin symptoms, which have been simply hinted at previously, but they are probably the most important group under the remedy. The eruptions are herpetic or eczematous as a rule. They often ulcerate and form thick (66) and fat scabs (66), from under which there exudes thick , purulent matter. This formation is especially noticeable on the scalp. There is intolerable itching, which is worse at night and from the warmth of the bed (122) and worse from scratching, which causes intense burning (122); the itching is usually relieved in the open air. It is very valuable for eruptions of the face and scalp milk crusts., etc., especially when thick crusts form. which are loose and thick, yellow, purulent and excoriating matter collects under them; there is great itching., which is worse at night and from heat,and the child constantly removes these scabs by scratching, leaving raw and sore spots. With this eruption we have matting (88) and falling out of the hair. It is valuable for eczema on the backs of the hands (65) and wrists, and for psoriasis (158) of old people, the itching worse after getting warm i bed,a nd temporarily relieved by drinking wine or coffee; at times with the itching there may be chilliness. I use Mezereum 6th.