Letter 0056

Edward Howman to Hans Sloane – December 23, 1724

Item info

Date: December 23, 1724
Author: Edward Howman
Recipient: Hans Sloane

Library: British Library, London
Manuscript: Sloane MS 4075
Folio: ff. 274-275

Original Page


Patient Details

  • Patient info
    Name: Mrs. Pearse
    Age:"about 24 years of age"
  • Description

    Healthy constitution, but irregular menses. Also: "small stature and rather of a thin habit of body". After a fever four years before, had obstructed menses and body grew fuller than usual. Worsened over time, though it was not troublesome. Married mid-January earlier that year and became pregnant in March, but she seemed to swell more than usual in pregnancy. Gave birth easily on Nov. 22 and had normal lochia, yet continued swelling. Although the gentlewoman is unnamed, given the date of birth (see also f. 267) and Mrs. Pearse's problems, it is likely that this patient is Mrs. Pearse.

  • Diagnosis

    Sloane's hand: "obstructions perhaps in the ovaria or fatt, infus. Chalyb. diuretic [illeg]mar purging with Jalap".

  • Treatment
    Previous Treatment:

    Right after the birth: syr. Adripl: olid., as well as sem: sinap: Raph: Cardam: Summit: cent: min: &c. in sherry or Rhenish with vin: scillit. These were preparative for purging at the end of the month. He then purged her with pulp: Cass: Rec: TJ: C: N: M: C. Diagryd: res: jal: aumol: Safsafre junip aā gut iii.

    Ongoing Treatment:

    She also sometimes took diuretic pills (Millep: Sap: Ven: Sal: Succin: Absin. Cum extra: Abs: R: e Bals Capir. q. s.).


    None of the above treatments removed her watery humours. She made some pale and scanty urine. She had no pain, her body was soft and her legs were not swollen.

  • More information
  • Medical problem reference
    Pregnancy, Menstrual, Hydropsy, Childbirth, Fevers