Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 23.djvu/204

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The mountain-cure remedies assist Nature only in an indirect way, but before the end of the first week the breathing power of the asthmatic lungs will revive as seeing and hearing awaken after a trance. The respiration is still short and quick, but becomes less and less laborious; the patient need not gasp for air; bis lungs have resumed business, and attend to all the details of its functions till it becomes entirely automatic.

Expectoration becomes less frequent; the source of the affection seems to retreat upward, the sputa come from the upper air-passages, and without the preliminaries of a worrying cough. Their quantity gradually diminishes, and the relief is permanent, while cough-medicines loosen the phlegm only by increasing its quantum, and discharging it with a tide of artificial mucus.

The night-sweats, too, soon disappear, for they can be cured on the slmilia similibus principle of the homœopathists—by day-sweats. Put on a flannel shirt, get an old axe and try your luck with a good sized bee-tree, or with the old log that obstructs the trail. Keep a tin cup about you, and assist Nature by frequent trips to the spring. No matter if you have to change your flannel shirts four times a day; depend upon it that you will not need them at night. The hectic fever abates; the cause has been removed. The sweats as well as the fever are induced by a pulmonary inflammation that increases the temperature of the body, but can be relieved by giving it a chance to eliminate the morbid matter. The four or five quarts of water that were excreted in the process of perspiration have circulated through every pore of the respiratory organs and depurated them more effectively in a single day than the repeated doses of a cough-exciting nostrum could do in a week. After the return from the mountains to the city (not before November, if possible) the occasional recurrence of the trouble will generally be limited to the rainy weeks of the first month, for the antipyretic influence of cold, clear weather rivals that of the perspiration-cure.

The danger of a hæmorrhage is generally passed when the cessation of purulent expectorations proves that the disease has become non-progressive, and that the ulcers begin to cicatrize. Hemoptysis, r blood-vomiting, is the only symptom of their disease which is liable to shake the characteristic hopefulness of consumptives. It generally frightens them considerably; they are apt to protest against out-door proceedings, and speak with bated breath, under the (erroneous) impression that a vocal effort has somehow induced the trouble. It can do no harm to humor that disposition; but keep the patient on his legs—lying down flat on the back after a heavy hæmorrhage is almost sure to bring on a relapse before the end of twenty-four hours. For the first three or four hours walk slowly up and down, try to keep up a deep and calm respiration, and, if possible, take the first nap in a sitting posture—propped up with cushions and pillows. At the end