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Convulsions

child, physician and head

CONVULSIONS.- Violent and abnormal muscular contractions of the body. For causes, classifications, diagnosis, etc., see THE SFANDARD PHYSICIAN, PageS 337'339.

Treatment.- Pending a professional diagnosis of the case, loosen the patient's clothing about the chest and neck to prevent strangulaticm ; place wedges between the jaws if there be tendency to injure the tongue ; give the patient plenty of fresh air. If the temperature is high, an effort may be made to reduce it by cold applications or an alcohol sponge-bath, but a physician should be promptly consulted.

Convulsions in children may be due to a variety of causes, and in view of this it is always wise to summon a physician at once. Pending his arrival, keep the room well ventilated ; undress the child, and note whether it draws its legs up to its stdmach ; feel the pulse ; also feel the top of the head. If the legs are drawn up and the head feels hot, the blood-vessels of the brain pulsate, the fontanel protrudes or is tense, and the pulse full and throbbing, congestion is probably present. Put the child into a. hot-water and mustard-bath at once (temperature roj° Palm). Immerse it up to the

middle of its chest, and on the top of its head put an ice-bag containing crushed ice. If no ice is handy, substitute folded handkerchiefs that have been saturated with alcohol. The child should be in the bath four or five minutes.

In a case in which the head is cool, the fontanel normal or depressed, and the pulse not beating with increased force, immerse the child to its neck in a hot both, and as it is in the water rub its body and limbs, and apply smelling-salts (mild) to the nose.

On taking the child ont of the bath, wrap it up in a blanket that has been warmed. It is not necessary to dress it immediately. If the child does well, it will fall into a sound natural sleep, which should not be disturbed under any circumstances.

As soon as possible a physician should be consulted as to the cause of the convulsion. Remember that one of the most prolific causes of these attacks is overfeeding. For further details, see also TilE STANDARD PllYsiciAN, pages 337-339.