Categories: Digestive Organs
This is a rapidly spreading gangrenous affection
of the cheeks and forms a rare occurrence and ending fatally in most
cases. The trouble may extend to the jaws and lips.
Causes. It is more common in girls and boys and usually appears between
the ages of two and five years. It is worse in the low countries like
Holland, but it is not contagious. It is more likely to attack the sickly
children suffering from the e
fects of overcrowding. It may follow
diseases like scarlet fever, typhoid fever, smallpox, etc.
Symptoms. It usually affects first the mucous membrane of one cheek, near
the corner of the mouth, as a dark, ragged, sloughing ulcer and spreads
for two or three days before the substance of the cheek is infected. If
you grasp the cheek between the thumb and finger you can then feel a hard
and sensitive lump. The cheek may be eaten through by the third day,
though a week generally passes before this happens. There is a burning
watery discharge from the unhealthy wound. The breath smells terribly and
it is almost unbearable. The gangrene may spread over one half of the face
of the side affected.
TREATMENT. The death rate is eighty to ninety per cent. This is a very
dangerous disease and a doctor must be in attendance. Cut, away all the
dead tissue by using burning caustics, such as fuming nitric acid, solid
zinc chloride, nitrate of silver, carbolic acid on the actual canker.
Sometimes mild applications like sub nitrate of bismuth, chloride of
potash or the following do well:--
Sulphate of copper 2 drams
Powdered cinchona 1/2 ounce
Water enough to make 4 ounces
Mix and apply. Peroxide of hydrogen is good as a disinfectant or boric
acid solution, etc., may be used. Keep up the patient's strength.
Fortunately this disease is rare. I have never seen a case in practice.
Salivation. Stop the mercury, keep the bowels open and use the same
antiseptic washes as directed for sore mouth.
Chlorate of Potash Solution, Soda Solutions, Boracic Acid
Solutions. Brush the ulcers with nitrate of silver sticks. Keep the mouth
clean with hot water washes and some of the antiseptics put in the water
as boric acid, soda, glycothymotine, listerine, etc.