THIS is a sudden, jerking spasm of the midriff, occurring every few moments in bad cases, causing the air to be driven out of the lungs with such suddenness as to produce a noise something like the involuntary yelp of a puppy. It is generally caused by acidity of the stomach, which irritates the nerves distributed to its neighborhood, and is not difficult to remove; but when it occurs towards the close of some acute and grave disease, it is sometimes a sign that dissolution is at hand.
Treatment. Startle the person suffering, by exciting surprise, or fear, or anger; or let a few small draughts of cold water be taken in quick succession; or, let the breath be held as long as possible. If the stomach is sour, take a teaspoonful of bicarbonate of soda, dis. solved in half a tumblerful of cold water. To expel wind from the stomach, if it be present, take some warm aromatic essence of peppermint, ether, or compound spirits of lavender. But one of the most effectual remedies is heavy pressure made upon the collar bone8. It is simple, and very effectual. Cocaine, one eighth grain every fifteen minutes, is 4 very simple and often efficacious remedy.
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