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however, passed away in a day or two after the act. In the course of
years, when involuntary emissions began to impair the constitution,
this condition became permanent. The throat always feels very delicate,
and there is often such irritability in it, along with this feeling
of the secretion of morbid matter, as to make it impossible to speak
without swallowing at every second or third word. This is felt even
in conversation, and there is a great disinclination to attempt to speak
at all. In many instances in which the throat has been supposed to give
way from other causes, I have known this to be the real one. May it
not be that the general irritation always produced by the habit referred
to, shows itself also in this organ, and more fully in those who are
required habitually to exercise it?"
_Nervous Diseases_.--There is no end to the nervous affections to which
the sufferer from this vice is subject. Headaches, neuralgias, symptoms
resembling hysteria, sudden alternations of heat and cold, irregular
flushing of the face, and many other affections, some of the more
important of which we will mention in detail, are his constant
_Epilepsy_.--This disease has been traced to the vile habit under
consideration in so many cases that it is now very certain that in many
instances this is its origin. It is of frequent occurrence in those
who have indulged in solitary vice or any other form of sexual excess.
We have seen several cases of this kind.
Failure of Special Senses.--Dimness of vision, amaurosis, spots before
the eyes, with other forms of ocular weakness, are common results of
this vice. The same degeneration and premature failure occur in the
organs of hearing. In fact, sensibility of all the senses becomes in
some measure diminished in old cases.
Spinal Irritation.--Irritation of the spinal cord, with its resultant
evils, is one of the most common of the nervous affections originating
in this cause. Tenderness of the spine, numerous pains in the limbs,
and spasmodic twitching of the muscles, are some of its results.
Paralysis, partial or complete, of the lower limbs, and even of the
whole body, is not a rare occurrence. We have seen two cases in which
this was well marked. Both patients were small boys and began to excite
the genital organs at a very early age. In one, the paralytic condition
was complete when he was held erect. The head fell forward, the arms
and limbs hung down helpless, the eyes rolled upward, and the saliva
dribbled from his mouth. When lying flat upon his back, he had
considerable control of his limbs. In this case, a condition of priapism
seems to have existed almost from birth, owing to congenital phimosis.
His condition was somewhat improved by circumcision. In the other case,
in which phimosis also existed, there was paralysis of a few of the
muscles of the leg, which produced club-foot. Circumcision was also
performed in this case and the child returned in a few weeks completely
cured, without any other application, though it had previously been
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