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EFFECTS IN FEMALES.
Local Effects.--The local diseases produced by the vice in females are,
of course, of a different nature from those seen in males, on account
of the difference in organization. They arise, however, in the same
way, congestions at first temporary ultimately becoming permanent and
resulting in irritation and various disorders.
Leucorrhoea.--The results of congestion first appear in the mucous
membrane lining the vagina, which is also injured by mechanical
irritation, and consists of a catarrhal discharge which enervates the
system. By degrees the discharge increases in quantity and virulence,
extending backward until it reaches the sensitive womb.
Contact with the acrid, irritating secretions of the vagina produces
soreness of the fingers at the roots of the nails, and also frequently
causes warts upon the fingers. Hence the value of these signs, as
Uterine Disease.--Congestion of the womb is also produced by the act
of abuse; and as the habit is continued, it also becomes permanent.
This congestion, together with the contact of the acrid vaginal
discharge, finally produces ulceration upon the neck, together with
Another result of congestion is all kinds of menstrual derangements
after puberty, the occurrence of which epoch is hastened by the habit.
Prolapsus and various displacements are produced in addition to
Cancer of the Womb.--Degeneration of this delicate organ also occurs
as the result of the constant irritation and congestion, and is often
of a malignant nature, occasioning a most painful death.
Sterility.--Sterility, dependent on a total loss of sexual desire and
inability to participate in the sexual act, is another condition which
is declared by medical authors to be most commonly due to previous
habits of self-abuse. In consequence of overexcitement the organs
Atrophy of Mammae.--Closely connected with other local results is the
deficient development of the breasts when the vice is begun before or
at puberty, and atrophy if it is begun or continued after development
has occurred. As previously remarked, this is not the sole cause of
small mammae, but it is one of the great causes.
Pruritis.--This is an affection not infrequent in these subjects.
Continued congestion produces a terrible itching of the genitals, which
increases until the individual is in a state of actual frenzy, and the
disposition to manipulate the genitals becomes irresistible, and is
indulged even in the presence of friends or strangers, and though the
patient be at other times a young woman of unexceptionable modesty.
In cases of this kind, great hypertrophy of the organ of greatest
sensibility has been observed, and in some cases amputation of the part
has been found the only cure.
General Effects.--The general effects in the female are much the same
as those in the male. Although women suffer no seminal loss, they suffer
the debilitating effects of leucorrhoea, which is in some degree
injurious in the same manner as seminal losses in the male. But in
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