Cullen

The Consultation Letters of Dr William Cullen (1710-1790) at the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh

 

[ID:1088] From: Dr William Cullen (Professor Cullen) / To: Mr Richard Walker / Regarding: Miss Hodgson (Hodgeson) (Patient) / 19 February 1781 / (Outgoing)

Reply, 'For Miss Hodgeson'. Directions to Richard Walker for Miss Hodgeson, with a diaphoretic recipe. Cullen states that he can give only a very general view, as '[i]t is a greatly disordered system which for a dozen of years past has exhibited almost every different shape of disease'. He admits: 'Miss H's constitution is singular in admitting feverish & inflammatory affections. In this view of so variously complicated a disorder it is very difficult to advise'.

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Metadata

FieldData
DOC ID 1088
RCPE Catalogue Number CUL/1/1/13/142
Main Language English
Document Direction Outgoing
Date19 February 1781
Annotation None
TypeScribal copy ( includes Casebook Entry)
Enclosure(s) No enclosure(s)
Autopsy No
Recipe Yes
Regimen No
Letter of Introduction No
Case Note No
Summary Reply, 'For Miss Hodgeson'. Directions to Richard Walker for Miss Hodgeson, with a diaphoretic recipe. Cullen states that he can give only a very general view, as '[i]t is a greatly disordered system which for a dozen of years past has exhibited almost every different shape of disease'. He admits: 'Miss H's constitution is singular in admitting feverish & inflammatory affections. In this view of so variously complicated a disorder it is very difficult to advise'.
Manuscript Incomplete? No
Evidence of Commercial Posting No

Case

Cases that this document belongs to:

Case ID Description Num Docs
[Case ID:987]
Case of Miss Hodgson [Hodgeson] with a very long history marked by a complex range of changing symptoms and self-medication. She is a chronic invalid who cannot turn herself in bed without aid.
4


People linked to this document

Person IDRole in documentPerson
[PERS ID:1]AuthorDr William Cullen (Professor Cullen)
[PERS ID:1884]AddresseeMr Richard Walker
[PERS ID:2273]PatientMiss Hodgson (Hodgeson)
[PERS ID:1884]Patient's Physician / Surgeon / ApothecaryMr Richard Walker
[PERS ID:1]Patient's Physician / Surgeon / ApothecaryDr William Cullen (Professor Cullen)

Places linked to this document

Role in document Specific Place Settlements / Areas Region Country Global Region Confidence
Place of Writing Cullen's House / Mint Close Edinburgh Edinburgh and East Scotland Europe certain
Destination of Letter Stockton-on-Tees North-East England Europe inferred

Normalized Text

[Page 1]
For Miss Hodgeson


I can only take a very general view.


It is a greatly disordered system which for a dozen of years
past has exhibited almost every different shape of disease.


It is a weakened nervous system giving a tendency to Par¬
alysis
& liable to the most violent spasmodic affections and
notwithstanding the general state of nervous affections
Miss H's constitution is singular in admitting feverish &
inflammatory affections. In this view of so variously
complicated a disorder it is very difficult to advise ––


If anything clearly inflammatory, or even if spasmod¬
ic affections
be attended with fever a little blood may be drawn
but otherwise bleeding is not suitable to the general ailments.
For these I would support the vigour of the Nervous and
Sanguiferous system by medicines compatible with an
inflammatory state
. Such I hold guaiac and for a form¬
ula see below – The doses must be according to the effects on
the belly. i.e. regular without purging. The proportion of
Tartar Emetic in it must be regulated by its effects on
the Stomach. It should not give much sickness else Miss
H. will not bear the repetition of it. If she can bear the
repetition of it she will also bear the Tartar Emetic



[Page 2]

gradually increased.


The only other medicine I would recommend is an
Opiate to be used more or less frequently or largely as the
spasmodic ailments
or her tendency to them may seem
to require. No other can be depended on. She may
amuse herself with any other she likes but I believe
the only other one from which she will have any benefit
will be a good Æther.


Some years ago Miss H. might have been much
the better for the farther use of Mercury but the opport¬
inity is past. Not very long ago I believe also she
might have been the better of sweating with Dover's powder
and if much Rheumatism were yet to return I should
wish it tried but in a constitution now so broken I
cannot pronounce the benefit would be equal to the
trouble it must give to her who cannot move herself.


Her diet must be directed by experience of the juvantia
& lædentia which I am not acquainted with and leave
to you.

Take 2 drachms of Gum Guaiacum and refined White Sugar. Rub into a fine powder, to which add 1½ ounces of coarse Gum Arabic paste. Again rub together thoroughly and gradually pour over 4 ounces of simple Alexiteric Water, 2 ounces of Nutmeg Water, an ounce of Orange Peel syrup, ½ an ounce of Diuretic Salts and 2 grains of Tartar Emetic. Mix. Label: Diaphoretic Mixture, a table spoonful twice a day; an hour or two before dinner & again at bed time; shaking the phial very well always before pouring it out


N.B. When an Anodyne draught is to be taken at bedtime
the Diaphoretic mixture may be taken at 7 p.m.

W.C.
Edinburgh 19th. February 1781

Diplomatic Text

[Page 1]
For Miss Hodgeson


I can only take a very general view.


It is a greatly disordered system which for a dozen of years
past has exhibited almost every different shape of disease.


It is a weakened nervous system giving a tendency to Par¬
alysis
& liable to the most violent spasmodic affections and
notwithstanding the general state of nervous affections
Miss H's constitution is singular in admitting feverish &
inflammatory affections. In this view of so variously
complicated a disorder it is very difficult to advise ––


If anything clearly inflammatory, or even if spasmod¬
ic affections
be attended with fever a little blood may be drawn
but otherwise bleeding is not suitable to the general ailments.
For these I would support the vigour of the Nervous and
Sanguiferous system by medicines compatible with an
inflammatory state
. Such I hold guaiac and for a form¬
ula see below – The doses must be according to the effects on
the belly. i.e. regular without purging. The proportion of
Tartar Emetic in it must be regulated by its effects on
the Stomach. It should not give much sickness else Miss
H. will not bear the repetition of it. If she can bear the
repetition of it she will also bear the Tartar Emetic



[Page 2]

gradually increased.


The only other medicine I would recommend is an
Opiate to be used more or less frequently or largely as the
spasmodic ailments
or her tendency to them may seem
to require. No other can be depended on. She may
amuse herself with any other she likes but I believe
the only other one from which she will have any benefit
will be a good Æther.


Some years ago Miss H. might have been much
the better for the farther use of Mercury but the opport¬
inity is past. Not very long ago I believe also she
might have been the better of sweating with Dover's powd.
and if much Rheumatism were yet to return I should
wish it tried but in a constitution now so broken I
cannot pronounce the benefit would be equal to the
trouble it must give to her who cannot move herself.


Her diet must be directed by experience of the juvantia
& lædentia which I am not acquainted with and leave
to you.


Gumm. guaiac. Sacch. alb. puriss. @ ʒij
Terito in pulv. ten. cui adde Muc. g. A. crass. ℥jſs
Terito iterum diligenter et paulatim affunde
Aq. alexiter. simpl. ℥jv –– nuc. mosch. ℥ij
Syr. e cort. aurant. ℥j Sal. diuret. ℥ſs tart. emet. gr. ij
ℳ. S. Diaphoretic ℳ. a table spoonful twice a day; an
hour or two before dinner & again at bed time; shaking
the phial very well always before pouring it out


N.B. When an Anodyne draught is to be taken at bedtime
the Diaphoretic mixture may be taken at 7 p.m.

W.C.
Edinr. 19th. Febr.y 1781

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