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Punctures Case Vii

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

Mr. Parr, aged 30, of delicate habit, trod upon a needle which pierced

the ball of the great toe; a free crucial incision was made but the

needle could not be found; a poultice was applied to the wound and

over the poultice a cold lotion.

In the course of a week part of the needle came away. He did not rest

as he was enjoined to do, and, in consequence, severe inflammation

came on, and in two days time, f
uctuation was perceived over the

joint, opposite to the puncture; a free incision was made, and some

pus was evacuated.

On the following day there was a free discharge, but very considerable

inflammation had taken place on the side of the ball of the toe; a

free incision was made in this part, and a fresh quantity of pus was


On the succeeding day, the inflammation was somewhat abated; but on

the next day, it had again become exasperated, and the openings made

for the evacuation of matter were somewhat closed by the swelling. I

now introduced the lunar caustic very freely into these openings, and

reapplied a cold poultice and lotion.

On the following day, I found that my patient had slept well for the

first time since the developement of inflammation, and had suffered

far less, after the smarting pain from the application of the caustic

had subsided, than before; the punctured orifices were open, and the

skin, which was extremely tense the day before, was become soft and


From this time, I found nothing necessary but to repeat the

application of the caustic about every third day to subdue

inflammation and to keep the wounds open, which it always effected.

The joint ever afterwards remained stiff, from which we may infer the

violence of the inflammation; and when we consider what was the

constitution of my patient, we cannot, I think, doubt that the caustic

prevented many serious events usually consequent in such cases under

the ordinary treatment.

It is highly worthy of remark, that the good effects of the

application of the caustic, in this case, were too immediate and

distinct to be mistaken.