Van Deusen/Kosinski Collection

with electricity in manner and degree suited to the exigency of the case.

In treating fever by electricity, in constitutions more infirm and delicate, the operations must be made in a milder manner and degree; the shocks must be passed in the same directions as before described; the tension must be taken off in the lower extremeties first, (except in pregnant women, which circumstance will require a little different treatment:) there is less danger of inducing disagreeable sensations, such as faintness, trembling, &c. The system will be greatly rellieved, without passing a single shock upon the vital part. It is prudent to give a very weakly person all the relief possible by this first operation. It will sometimes be necessary to administer a dose of elix. parag. or diluted opium; or, if you please, in substance, to keep up the vital strength of the patient, after a short evacuation by perspiration.

It may be observed, that the weaker the constitution of the patient, the less will the tension of the fever resist the operation of the electric shock. The lesser quantity, then, will produce the same effect on a weak person, a child, &c. that a larger quantity will upon a sound, strong man. A shock that would scarcely take off any degree of tension in a strong man, would reduce a weak man, even in a fever, greatly beyond par. The operator must, as was said before, be acquainted with his own machine: He must observe the different degrees of the charge by the electrometer - must notice how well people are affected by them - must notice what degree will be felt in a well man, no higher than his wrists, when the shock is passed from hand to hand through the breast - what degree of the electrometer will jar the same man to his elbows - what degree will affect him to his shoulders; and, lastly, what degree will jar him in his breast.

This last is the highest degree that should ever be administered: It is hardly ever necessary, even in the highest degree of tension, in a strong man; it may as well be performed by an increased number of weaker shocks, which are much safer and easier for the patient.

I have frequently observed, that a shock which could be felt in a strong man, or woman, no higher than the wrist, would jar a weak person smartly in the breast, and would be almost the over-action of the shock in them.

Let the degree of the shock be what it may, if a person feels hurt in the breast with it, he is hurt indeed; it is the over-action of the shock to him. hence we infer the absolute necessity of commencing the operations in a reduced degree; and that they may be increased, partly by consulting the patient, especially if a delicate one, and partly by the operator's absolute judgment. In case of pregnancy, the shocks must not be passed obliquely, but passed from about the hip joints to the foot on the same side, and that but lightly; the legs must

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1 Title page
2 Preface
13 Chapter 1 - Animal and Vegetable Electricity
26 Chapter 1 - Astronomical
70 Chapter 2 - Of the Conductors
   97 Chapter 3  [Medical Conditions]   People and Links   Theory Links
97 People 97 Links 97 Fever
108 Peripneumony 171 Cholic 210 Involuntary motion
      of the eyelids
111 Pleurisy 174 Asthma 210 Hemmorage
114 St. Anthony's Fire 176 Diabetes 217 Hemorroids
115 Inflammatory Rheumatism 178 Urine suppressed,
  bloody and hot
217 Ulcers and Abcesses
115 Inflammatory Sore Throat 182 Menses obstructed 220 Rickets
122 Madness 185 King's Evil 221 Locked Jaw or Joints
131 Ague 186 Cancers 224 Bruises
138 St. Vitus's Dance 194 Quincy 229 Nerves contracted
140 Hysterics 195 Head-ache 230 Sprain or Strain
144 Epilepsy 196 Deafness 231 Felon or Whitlow
149 Consumption 197 Inflammatory Eyes 231 Pains in different parts
153 Palsy 197 Film 232 Wounds, etc.
158 Dropsy 199 Gutta Serena 234 Drowning
164 Gout 207 Cataract 237 Suppressed Perspiration
166 Dysentery 209 Fistula Lachrymalis 237 Burns and Scalds
242 Chapter 4  [Equipment]   Equipment Links
277 Thoughts on the Times
Electricity, or Ethereal Fire, Considered is presented here for historical purposes only, and should not be interpreted as medical advice.


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