Of the conductors of the shock in the human body - An excessive action of the
shock described - A moderate action an infallible cure of fever and inflammation -
A weak action peculiar to cases of debility - Of insolation, its action a direct stimulus
Proper mode of using it, &c.
Of the Conductors.
TO understand the manner in which the electric shock is conducted through the human body,
is a matter of no small importance to a thorough investigation of the subject of medical
electricity. To know whether it is conducted by the bones, muscles, fluids, or all three, is
a matter of enquiry, and demands our first attention, that we may know, in general, what effect the shocks
are likely to produce in the body.
Those who have been acquainted with electrical machines, must necessarily know that there is a great
dispartiy in the aptness of some conductors, compared with others; and that the shock will incline
together to that conductor which is the most apt or suitable. Thus
|1st. - quality,
||water, blood or liquids.
||drywood, earth and the like.
Let all these different conductors be preseented at once to convey an electric shock, and the most suitable,
viz. the metal, will receive and convey the whole, or nearly the whole quantity or charge contained
in the receiver. Again, if you remove the metallic vonveyance, and pass the shock as before, it will
fall upon, and be conducted by the pure liquid element; if you remove the pure liquid element, and pass
the shock it will fall on the human body, remove the human body, &c. and the shock will pass on the
green wood; and lastly, it will pass, though very imperfectly, upon dry wood, dry earth, and many
other the like substances; but the action could not be perceived in the human body, when these
deficient conductors form any part of the conveyance with the human body, admitting the quantity is not
I have placed the human body below pure fluids, and for this obvious reason; there is a scantiness
of fluids on the surface, especially at times, which impedes the motion or force of the shock,
and this impediment would be sufficient to turn its flight upon pure fluids, to which it has free access.
Let these reasonings be applied to the human body, and we shall discover at once, that the fluids are
the principal conductors of the electric shock; and as the blood makes the greater part,
the blood doth consequently receive and convey the shock through the body.