site logo

Of Inflammation Of The Knee

Sources: Application Of The Lunar Caustic In The Cure Of Certain Wounds And Ulcers

Servant women, I suspect from much kneeling in scouring stairs, &c.

are subject to a species of inflammation of the knee which is

frequently extremely troublesome.

In one case suppuration of the integuments took place in the forepart

of the knee, and the patient was obliged to leave her situation and go

to her friends at a distance, although every antiphlogistic means was

tried for her relief.

In two other cases, after the application of twenty leeches and the

administration of an emetic and purgative medicine, I applied the

lunar caustic freely over the whole surface of the knee previously

moistened with water. In a few hours the cuticle was raised and

vesicated; I evacuated a viscid puriform fluid, and I directed the

constant application of the cold poultice and lotion.

In a few days all inflammation subsided and the patients remained


These three cases having occurred to me at the same time, and being

apparently equally severe, I was enabled to judge of the efficacy of

this use of the caustic, and I can strongly recommend it to a future

and further trial. Its application causes more pain than a blister,

but not so much as to form an obstacle to its employment.

It may not be unimportant, here, to suggest the trial of the caustic

in other cases of inflammation, in which a more than usually active

local remedy is required.

5. Of Tinea Capitis, &c.

In this place I have only to observe that I have in some cases

completely succeeded, in others completely failed, in the cure of

tinea capitis, by the lunar caustic. As I have not hitherto

distinguished these cases from each other; and as I could only offer

conjectures on the subject, I think it best to leave it for future


The same observation applies to some other cutaneous affections which

I need not specify more particularly at the present.