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150 years ago: Nitrite of amyl: a most powerful and valuable medicinal agent. Practitioner July/August 2021;265(1850):30

150 years ago: Nitrite of amyl: a most powerful and valuable medicinal agent

26 Jul 2021Registered users

Mrs T. T…………… suffered from dilated hypertrophy of both ventricles, the dilation being in excess, accompanied by a very feeble circulation, and anasarca to an extreme degree extending upwards to the abdomen, slight pulmonary oedema, some lividity of face, but not much shortness of breath. I proceeded one evening to cup the loins. Two glasses were applied, one over each kidney. The blood flowed slowly, and when there was about a wine glass full in each glass it ceased to run. At that moment it occurred to me that it would be interesting to watch just then the effects of nitrite of amyl upon her. I applied ten drops on some lint to her nostrils. Soon the radial pulse throbbed, then the face became flushed, and at the same instant blood flowed freely into the cupping-glasses. The experiment was most striking, and clearly showed the influence of amyl on the circulation.

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