Sources: Papers On Health

These will be found dealt with under many headings throughout

this book (see Abscess; Bone, Diseased; Blood; Boils; Breast; Cancer;

Carbuncle; Cauliflower Growth; Eruptions; Erysipelas, etc.), therefore

we here only treat generally of two kinds of common sores. The first is

the surface sore, which eats inwards; the second, the deep-seated sore,

which eats outwards. The first usually begins as a small pimple like a

pin's head, and, if neglected, breaks, and gradually increases in size.

Its origin is something which has caused the minute vessels of the skin

at the spot to give way, so that they remain congested with bad blood,

which soon becomes practically poisonous, and so the sore enlarges and

eats into the surrounding tissue. If such a sore appears on the leg, it

is often due to over-pressure through too much standing. Rest, with the

leg kept horizontal or inclined slightly upwards to the foot, will

often be enough to cure. When complete rest cannot be had, a thigh

bandage (see Veins, Swollen) should be worn.

To treat the sore, it should be washed twice a day with BUTTERMILK

(see), and afterwards thoroughly soaked with weak ACETIC ACID

(see), and dressed with antiseptic lint, or, if that cannot be had,

with buttermilk cloths. A buttermilk poultice (see Potato Poultice)

may be used. But if no rest can be had, the sore will be extremely

difficult, if not impossible, to heal.

The second kind of sore, arising from an abscess under the part, or

diseased bone or membrane far down beneath the skin, is to be treated

on the same principles, using weak acetic acid for the syringing, and

buttermilk only for the surface. The method of treatment is such as

will secure the contact of the weak acid with every part, even the

deepest, of the wound. Procure a small pointed glass syringe, which

must be kept thoroughly clean. The point of this may be inserted into

the sore, and care taken that the weak acid penetrates into the very

bottom, and thoroughly soaks all the diseased parts. This syringing

should be repeated until the wound is thoroughly clean in every part.

If pain is set up, the acid is too strong. Syringing with lukewarm

water will at once relieve this, and then weaker acid may be used. This

treatment may be given twice a day, and the wound properly dressed

after it. Attention must be paid in all treatment of sores or wounds to

the proper cleansing and boiling of all materials and instruments used.

Wash the hands in hot water and M'Clinton's soap, using a nail-brush,

before touching or dressing a sore.

Boil some soft clean rags for five minutes, and wash the sore with

these, using water that has been boiled and allowed to cool to

blood-heat, to which a few drops of acetic acid have been added, but

not so much as to be painful on the sore.

If a syringe is used, boil it before using, and only use boiled or

distilled water in all operations. This secures the destruction of the

germs (or Bacteria), which are now known as the cause of the

inflammation and suppuration of wounds and sores of all kinds.