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SYMPTOMATOLOGY OF GANGLIASTHENIA.
Frontal headache is reflected from the congested stomach. Suffusion of eyes, lacrymation, is due to congestion of the lacrymal gland.
Asthenopia, blurred or distorted vision, is occasioned by congestion of the retina.
Soreness of the lids is due to congestion of the palpebral conjunctival membrane.
Ptosis, or convulsive closure of the eyelids, is purely a sign of gangliasthenia. Ganglionic fibres unite with the nerves which supply the levatores palpebrarum. When tears are shed as the expression of emotion, the lids are partly closed by the action of the sympathetic portion of the nerves which supply this muscle. When "crocodile tears" are poured out, the lids never quiver or drop, because the sympathies are not touched. This sign finds its intensest expression in cholera.
The sense of a swelling or bulging in the eyes, exophthalmos, is also gangliasthenic, and is due to contraction of the orbito-ocular muscle behind the globe, which causes the protruding.
Injected and congested conjunctivæ exhibit the condition of the arterioles throughout the body.
Icteroid conjunctivæ show how easy tissue is pervaded by pigmentary matters of the bile. Icterus is occasioned by gangliasthenia.
Excessive sweating in congestive disease is due to the ganglionic condition.
Sleeplessness and disagreeable dreams are evidence of debility. The phantasmagoria of the waking hours, as processions of men, women and animals, looking and mocking the patient, pass before him in endless array.
Anorexia, nausea, vomiting and retching, are due to different degrees of congestion of the stomach.
Coldness of the extremities indicates gangliasthenia.
Stiffness, numbness and swelling of the hands are due to their congestion.
Sweating hands are often an idiopathic affection. The "washerwoman's hand" is an objective symptom of cholera,
typhus, and yellow fever, which diseases are nosologically related. The palm of the gangliasthenic individual exudes a greasy sweat.
Discoloration under the nails is an eloquent tell-tale. In arterio-motor gangliasthenia the color is purple; in the venomotor, it is blue.
Pain in the nape of the neck running up or radiating into the occiput, is reflected from the congested lungs.
Pain between the scapula is reflected from the congested stomach.
Pain at the upper lumbar vertebræ is reflected from congested kidneys.
Pain at the sacro-spinal junction is reflected from congested
Pain in the shoulders is reflected from congested liver. Pain in the elbows and knees is reflected from congested colon.
Pain in the bones is due to congestion of their medulla. Weariness or muscular debility, pain and cramps in the legs, are reflected from the congested small intestine.
Edema of the feet and ankles denotes the general gangliasthenic condition.
Hæmorrhages due to congestion occur as the secondary consequences of arterio-motor gangliasthenia. When they occur idiopathically they are diseases; as hæmoptysis, hæmatemesis, menorrhagia and the like. But when occurring as an intercurrent affection, the phenomenon is regarded as a symptom of congestive disease, as the black vomit of yellow fever, the intestinal hæmorrhage of typhus or scurvy, and of catamenial excess, or metzorrhagia. When intestinal hæmorrhage takes place in typhus, it is erroneously attributed to ulceration of the bowels.
In the veno-motor gangliasthenia of cholera, serum is copiously evacuated; but when reaction takes place, the ganglionic condition changes to arterio-motor depression, and hæmorrhage ensues. This change shows that the two conditions are intervertible and closely allied.
Despondency, irritable temper, lassitude, languor, listless
ness, hot flushes and cold chills are all expressive of mild gangliasthenia.
The atonic or feeble voice belongs to the same category. Drowsiness in daytime is generally the sequence of sleeplessness in the night.
Tinnitus aurium, a humming in the ears, is due to congestion of the labyrinth.
The sense of constriction around the chest is from congestion of the diaphragm.
The sense of chilliness is generally present in incipient gangliasthenia, and denotes the beginning of passive congestion. The feeling is experienced in the warmest days and is excited by the gentlest zephyr. It is of most valuable import to the diagnosticator, and he should in all cases ascertain its existence by direct enquiry.
Diarrhoea is both a symptom and a disease; as a symptom it is a direct sign of gangliasthenia and is due to congestion of the small intestine.
The results of gangliasthenia are immediate and remote. The immediate consequence is passive congestion, and the remote effects are the results of passive congestion. These are principally changes in the character of the blood, and in the relation of the blood to the vessels. Alterations in the character of the blood take place slowly or rapidly, according to the kind and form of gangliasthenia. Permanent changes of the tissue or structure of the ganglia caused by disintegration, softening or other morbid process, may be considered as the resultant effects of gangliasthenia.
CAUSES OF GANGLIASTHENIA AND THE REMEDIES.
Every agent which tends to lower the spirits and moral power of the individual is likely to impair the nervous energy. Dr. Ward enumerates among the depressing causes the varying conditions of the atmosphere in general, that part of it which the individual breathes; the social relations which each sustains to others; the circumstances of life as regards food, clothing, labor and sleeping arrangements; in short, every thing that affects the corporeal existence from within or with
The particular type which the disease assumes which is occasioned by gangliasthenia, is determined by the environments of the individual.
The treatment of gangliasthenia should always be directed to the mild form, thus preventing disease.
There is much to admire, very much to approve in these statements. All medical science that does not penetrate with its light to the root of our physical maladies and sufferings, but applies its remedies only to visible effects, and to the removal of temporary symptoms, is superficial and unphilosophical. The name, too, seems most appropriate. The peculiar symptoms enumerated, involving the impairment of nervous force, weakness and vacillation of will, lack of decision, depressing emotions, irregular action of the muscles, are not in an essential sense to be referred to cerebral trouble. They belong to the organic centre itself,-to the solar ganglion.* The great sympathetic nerve is endowed with a specific and independent energy, to which the brain and spinal cord are subordinate. The vital stimulus proceeds thence, and sustains every functional action of the body.
THE MORAL NATURE.
While the brain and spinal cord constitute the organism by which man sustains relations toward the external world, the ganglionic system is the origin of subjectivity. He feels with it, and from this instinctive feeling co-ordinating with the reflective faculties, he forms his purposes. "We will find," Dr. Kerner truly remarks, "that this external life is the dominion of the brain-the intellect which belongs to the world; while the inner life dwells in the region of the heart, within the sphere of sensitive life, in the sympathetic and ganglionic system. You will further feel that by virtue of this inner life, mankind is bound up in an internal connection with nature." Dr. Richardson is equally positive: "That organic nervous centres are the centres also of those mental acts which are
*I do not believe in the "Germ-Theory" of disease, which seems now to be the popular craze, but rather in the Disease-Theory of Germs. The notion about bacilli, fungi and malaria, are all of a piece, pessimistic and unphilosophical.—A. W.
not conditional, but are instinctive, impulsive, or, as they are most commonly called, emotional."
It must follow, then, that all emotions will make themselves manifest through this part of the physical structure. We observe this at every hand. Every new phase of life, every occurrence or experience that we encounter, immediately indicates its effects upon the central organs of the body and the glandular structures. Every function is influenced by emotional disturbance. We lose our appetite for food, we are depressed and languid, or cheerful and buoyant, at the gratification or disappointment of our hopes, or at some affectional excitement. A comparison with the several forms of disease will show analogy and resemblance between each malady and some type of moral disorder. These influences prolonged and carried to excess would bring about permanent disease; and hence that maxim of Pythagoras cannot be too carefully heeded: "Nothing in excess."
I will agitate no dogmas here about the possible existence of the soul and moral nature apart from the body. Enough that I heartily accept the faith of an eternal life, which was before our birth upon this earth, which will be after our existence here shall cease, and that of that life and of that eternity we are an essential part. It is my purpose here to consider our relations as living essences with the physical structure to which we are attached. That the psychic entity pertains to the ganglionic rather than to the cerebral system as its informing principle is apparent. We love and hate, hope and fear, trust and doubt with this principle, and what is more than all, perceive the Infinite and Beyond.
This knowledge is invaluable in regard to the Higher Medicine. It is not to be supposed that the methods now in vogue, composed as they are of temporary expedients, unphilosophical conjectures, and a medication which conflicts with the vis medicatrix in the body, can always predominate. There must be an endeavor to recruit as well as sustain the vital forces. The dreams of old sages and prophets were not altogether visionary. Virtue can pass from one to another and so heal the sick as well as cheer the despondent. What little is known of animal magnetism proves as much. This agency is