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July 31, 1937

BENZEDRINE SULFATE AND ATROPINE IN TREATMENT OF CHRONIC ENCEPHALITIS

Author Affiliations

CHICAGO; ELGIN, ILL.

From the Department of Nervous and Mental Diseases, Northwestern University Medical School and the Elgin State Hospital.

JAMA. 1937;109(5):344-346. doi:10.1001/jama.1937.02780310022007
Abstract

Atropine and related drugs (scopolamine, stramonium) have proved their value in the symptomatic treatment of chronic encephalitis. There is a definite decrease in rigidity and tremor as well as a decrease in sialorrhea. However, there are annoying symptoms in this disease which are not affected by atropine. These are oculogyric crises, drowsiness during the day and sometimes also wakefulness at night. Some patients also have a feeling of exhaustion.

Benzedrine sulfate has been used with success in sleep disorders (narcolepsy)1 It has been found helpful in certain conditions characterized by fatigue and depression2 and it has been reported as being of some symptomatic value in chronic encephalitis.3

Some of the symptoms of chronic encephalitis are due to parasympathetic stimulation.4 The addition of benzedrine sulfate, which is a sympathomimetic drug, to the atropine treatment should enhance the effect of the latter. It has already been established that

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