By Ellis Barker J.
ON January 12th, 1937, I was visited by a Mrs. P.W.R., well-to- do London business man, who had been troubled with his bladder for a great many years. Ten years ago he underwent a large operation for papilloma, which was successful. The surgeon apparently thought that it might be cancerous or that it might become cancerous, and therefore he asked the patient to be examined every six months. The examination was done by means of the cystoscope, a rather large sized tube which is stuck into the bladder by way of the penis, which is furnished at the end with a little electric lamp and a reflector, by means of which the practitioners can look into and around the inside of the bladder.
The forcing in a large tube is a very painful process, and in order to avoid pain, the examination was done under a general anaesthetic in a Nursing Home. Examination by means of the cystoscope is a very dangerous and most undesirable undertaking, because of the fearful strain on the most dedicated tissues involved. I have seen many patients who have been terribly damaged by rash and callous insertion into the bladder of a huge tube, which lacerated the urethra and occasionally injured the prostate and the bladder. Mr. P.W.R. had never received any dietetic or medicinal advice, and had lived on whatever he fancies.
The patient was perfectly satisfied with his general health, but he had noticed a few months ago that he had passed in his urine bits of cotton and at last, a piece of red material; these things had obviously been left behind at the time of the operation.
There was a feeling of discomfort in the bladder; the bladder was weak and the urinary stream was poor, urine was cloudy and there was pain in the kidney region, and the patient suspected that the bladder trouble was getting worse, and he came to me in order to avoid the outrageously painful and dangerous examination by the cystoscope which is usually inflicted upon the bladder sufferer by the bladder specialist.
Mr. P.W.R. was 61 years, looked healthy and strong, had an excellent complexion, and had had comparatively little disease. He came from excellent stock, and had been an extremely powerful child; however, when he was seven years old he had contracted scarlet fever very badly; every since that time there had been trouble with the bladder, and the disease had pulled him down to such an extent that he was unable to hold his own against boys of his own age, and he remained a weakling for at least ten years.
Ten years before the bladder operation, for a growth which was filling the organ, he was suffering from an enormous number of polypi in the nose. At least thirty were removed in the course of years. Obscure growths, such as polypi and papillomas, suggest vaccinal poisoning. The patient had been vaccinated twice. Therefore, instead of adopting the orthodox view that the patient suffered from a local growth which should be cut out, I concluded that he suffered from vaccinal poisoning and scarlatina poisoning, in the first instance, that the scarlet fever had obviously affected the bladder, while vaccinosis had produced first numerous polypi in the nose, and then the bladder growth.
If, instead of removing the polypi surgically, the patient had been treated by medicines to antidote vaccinal poisoning, if he had been given Thuja and various other indicated medicines, the polypi would probably have dropped out, being cast off by the body, and the bladder growth need never have occurred. Nature endeavoured to create an outlet was destroyed by surgical action, a growth had to be formed elsewhere, and it happened to be formed in the bladder.
In prescribing for my patient I acted on the assumption that his trouble was probably due to scarlatina and vaccinal poisoning. Needless to say his condition was aggravated by an unsuitable diet which included meat, bacon, coffee two or three times a day, etc. I gave him a strengthening, blood clearing and eliminating diet, extremely rich in vitamins. As there was pain in the kidneys and his urine was cloudy and as there was a suspicion of kidney trouble, possibly with formation of pus, I gave him Chimaphila tablets, and Sarsaparilla tablets, both mother tincture, two tablets to be dissolved in a tumblerful of water.
The latter measure was to ensure that the patient would take vast quantities of liquid to wash out the kidneys and bladder. Concentrated urine is, to course, injuries to a weakened kidney and bladder. In addition I gave him a dose of Thuja 200, as a vaccination antidote, to be taken last thing every Monday night, and a dose of Scarlatina 200, as a scarlet fever antidote, to be taken every Saturday night.
I had, of course, not examined the patient by means of the cystoscope, or with a catheter, the use of which is also risky. I had examined him merely by way of the anus, and had observed him urinating. He complained about internal irritation when making water. Because of the burning sensation, I had, of course, greatly increased his intake of liquid, and had forbidden coffee, alcohol, spices and condiments. Further, I noticed that there was a very poor stream, and the urine was full of floating material, which came either from the kidneys or the bladder.
On January 24th, twelve days after our interviews, and about ten days after the beginning of the treatment, Mr. P.W.R. wrote to me: “For some months previously I have experienced a certain amount of internal irritation, especially when passing urine.
During the day time, especially when at the works, I have been conscious of these parts. Last week there was a sensible improvement in this respect. The urine is lighter in colour and has less odour. The number of specks floating in it (when held to the electric light) are fewer. I do not observe much improvement yet in freedom and power to evacuate the urine. On the whole I think it is slightly better”.
A week later, on February 1st, my patient reported: “I consider there is a sensible improvement in freer evacuation of the urine. I am having more refreshing nights of restful sleep. It has become a habit to wake at 2 to 3 a.m. and not get off to sleep afterwards. Last week I hardly opened a book during the night-an unusual happening.
On Thursday afternoon I took my wife to the cinema and sat out the whole performance of 2 hours 50 minutes without having to come out to relieve myself. On Friday I had appointments in London morning and afternoon. I felt less fatigue than for a long time past. At the end of the day I was not really tired at all. This is a great improvement.
On Saturday night I took the scarlet fever antidote as ordered. I do not feel quite as good as described above, but I expect to be all right by to-morrow. Taking the improvement all round I am satisfied. The urine is still cloudy but the specks and pieces of mucous have practically disappeared and the absence of odour (compared with the previous condition) is very noticeable. I want to do the fullest justice to al your instructions. I am most encouraged”.
Mr. P.W.R. experienced a most gratifying improvement in his bladder condition and in his general health in a short three weeks, after years of constantly increasing discomfort. During that time doctors and surgeons had attended to him in vain, and every so-called scientific examination by the cystoscope had done him harm. The physical eye, even if re-informed by microscope, ultra-microscope, cystoscope or whatever scopes there are, sees next to nothing. The mental eye can see much.
A little imagination is needed. The local condition of the patients bladder and kidneys was of no importance to me, and I did not take any notice of their state. After all I am not a surgeon, who is only interested in the local findings, and the physician, unfortunately, is guided by the surgeon and the surgeon;s methods, and studied only the local facts. I wished to find the cause of the trouble; I thought to discover it is an attack of scarlet fever which occurred fifty-four years previously and in vaccinal poisoning which occurred more than sixty years ago, when the patient was a baby.
It is surely not a coincidence that the patient reacted with prompt rapidity to the medicines given, and that a dose of Scarlatina 200 produced an aggravation, proclaiming that there was still hidden scarlatina poisoning.
The patient is still under treatment.
The diagnosis of the cause and the diagnosis of the remedy is infinitely more important than a diagnosis which merely gives the disease an orthodox name. Possibly the orthodox name would have been cystitis, pyelitis and trauma. Medicinal treatment on the basis of the orthodox diagnosis would probably have resulted in failure, and then the patient would have been told that there was nothing to do but to have an operation, with a view to draining the kidneys, or a further bladder operation might have been suggested. Bladder and kidney operations are extremely dangerous. The patient was not expected to recover after the first operation for papilloma.