the forehead or top of the head to the feet, and they have immediately recovered their senses.
This circumstance of the shock through the brain, being so very efficacious in giving relief in the epilepsy, has led me to suspect that the fit proceeds more from
the brain, or the heads of the nerves in the medullary substance of the brain, than hath been generally suspected:
the spasm, however, doth commonly, or always commence first in the head.
I have seen persons, in the commencement of the paroxysm, standing upon their feet, their eyes drawn erect, their bodies turning swiftly round, until they fell by
the universal spasm.
Admitting that the epilepsy proceeds from some defect in the seat of sensation and the source of volition, it is no wonder that the electric shock has such an ascendency over any other means that can be found;
seeing it is the only means that can act directly upon the brain and seat of the nerves:
but as there is such an intimacy of sensation and sympathy between the brain and the nerves proceeding from the brain, that it is difficult to determine
whether the defect is local in the head, or universal upon the nerves.
I have inserted these remarks and observations that those who have abilities may judge of their value, if they have any.
Decoctions of valerian root, alternated with opiates, are sometimes beneficial.
The patient must keep warm; one slight cold will bring on a paroxysm.
Cramp in the legs, or any other part, is always relieved for a time by taking a few light shocks upon the part affected:
if the part is kept warm, it will keep the cramp off a long time; but if you wet your feet, or let the part be cold, the cramp will return immediately.
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