Rheumatic fever of inflammatory rheumatism is a very serious chronic disease. It mainly affects chldren and adolscents. It is thought to be an allergic condition which affects the joints, heart and nervous system.
The child-patient should be kept in bed until the swelling of the joints subsides and fever settles. He should be nursed carefully and not allowed to exert himself. He may be given plenty of fruit juices in the begining of the treatment. Orange juice will be especially beneficial. It can be given diluted with water on 50 : 50 basis. If possible, the bowels should be cleansed daily with warm- water anema.
Hot and cold compresses should be applied several times daily to relieve swelling and pain in the joints. Cold packs should also be applied to the trunk. A cold pack to the throat will also be beneficial.
The patient may adopt an all-fruit diet when the temperature has come down to normal and the tngue has cleared. In this regimen,he should take fresh juicy fruits such as apple, pineapple, peach, pear, grapes, orange and papaya or any other juicy fruit in season. Thereafter , he may gradually embark upon a well-balanced diet according to his age. The emphasis should be on whole grain cereals, fresh fruits and raw vegetables and their juices.
A useful remedy for rheumatic fever is the use of asparagus seeds, black cumin , fenugreek and ajwain. All the four herbs should be taken in equal quantity and ground into powder. Three grams of this powder should be swallowed with water every morning. This will control the swelling of rheumatism.
Another useful remedy to relieve the pain of rheumatic fever is to grind finely 1.25 decigrams of white arsenic, one dried grape and four decigrams of pepper and make into 24 pills. One pill should be taken daily after breakfast.
As for local application, one kilo of root of castor tree should be boiled in eight litres of water. The mixture should be expressed and strained when one-fourth of the liquid is left. It should be boiled in half kg. of castor oil till all the water has evaporated. This oil should be rubbed over the affected parts and they should be bandaged with cottonwool.