Disordered State of the Nerves of the Skin.
Itching. Pruritus. This is supposed to be dependent on an altered condition of the nerves of the skin, and consists in a painful sensation of itching. There is no perceptible alteration in the appearance or structure of the skin. This itching is thought, generally, to be a result of sympathy, through the nerves, with some diseased and excited condition of a distant part. The itching is brought on by the most trifling causes, and for hours may deprive the sufferer of every particle of repose. It more frequently affects the fundament, or the private parts, particularly the scrotum.
Treatment. As this disease is only a symptom of several others, the constitutional treatment belongs under the heads of these other diseases. The local applications for relieving the itching are, a solution of sugar of lead (224), hydrocyanic acid (363), of corrosive sublimate (212), diluted nitrate of mercury ointment, and poppy fomentations. Also (223). Tonics are often of first importance. Weak solutions of carbolic acid or soda water at times suffice.
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