I. Physiological Considerations
Bronchitis is an inflammatory condition of the respiratory system brought about by irritant and/or infectious agents. According to the Edgar Cayce readings, in the majority of cases irritants built up within the body are the usual culprit in the etiology of bronchitis as opposed to inhaled irritants, e.g., cigarette smoke, chemical fumes, dust, etc. (which can also cause bronchitis).
The underlying cause was often not to be found in the respiratory system itself but elsewhere. The most recurrent themes throughout the readings were poor elimination, spinal subluxation, and disturbances in the circulatory system. (These, as we see, are the triad mentioned in the readings on "headache.") This is not surprising, for, as indicated in those readings, functional abnormalities which may in turn become structural (pathologic conditions) given enough time may occur in any body organ or tissue as a result of disturbances in these systems in any combination.
The question to be asked now is, "What determines which organs or tissues are affected?" The answer to this is not entirely clear but has to do partly with which of the triad is involved, at what level the involvement is located, the vulnerability of those tissues or organs supplied by that system (i.e., acquired or congenital weakness in such), etc.
Poor elimination results in the accumulation of toxic or irritant material in the alimentary tract, blood, and lymphatics. This implies that the organs of elimination have been unable to keep up with their function and that compensatory changes have been inadequate. Consequently the accumulated toxins produce inflammatory changes in the respiratory system - namely the trachea and bronchi-and in many cases also in the throat, the nasal passages, and the sinuses.
With inflammation, congestive changes occur, further retarding the clearances of waste products in these tissues, thus aggravating the problem. These changes can further impair the nervous impulses controlling circulation (blood, lymphatics) in the respiratory system (overabundance or paucity may result), further compounding the problem.
Subluxation, usually in the third or fourth dorsal centers (but any area of the spine may be involved) causes changes or diversion of nervous impulses (nerve forces) reaching the lungs, bronchi, etc.; this results in circulatory congestion (plethora) in the lungs with attendant inflammatory changes, i.e., bronchitis. This inflammation often extends to the trachea, larynx, nasal passages, and sinuses (lesions in the cervical spine are usually found in addition in these instances). Other organs and tissues in other parts can be affected in a like manner, thus complicating the picture. The digestive system is notably among these. (Note that congestion is associated with toxin build-up.) Case  is a good example of multiple organ system involvement.
Qualitative and quantitative changes in the circulatory system have a variety of effects on the body. Overabundant circulation (as in 124-1), apart from causing arterial hypertension, has an adverse effect on the nerve plexuses that regulate blood (and lymph) flow. The result: congestion in various organs, which in the respiratory system produced bronchitis. Anemia, coexisting or resulting from bronchitis, further reduces the functional capacity of the blood.
In a few other cases Cayce mentions other causes and/ or coexistent conditions such as superacidity, tendency to cold and congestion, scar tissue in the area of the vagus center causing cold and congestion, "infectious forces," etc. These, in the final analysis, can probably be explained in physical terms through the mechanisms already described.
That our mental/emotional and spiritual attitudes can cause or exacerbate existing illness is illustrated here (pathologic condition produced by a burn [chemical], negative attitude):
In giving the interpretation of the disturbance here, other conditions than the pathological effects produced must be taken into consideration - if there would be real help for this body.
That which is in the physical disturbing is, ever, the result of breaking a law; either pertaining to the physical, mental, or spiritual.
Here we have a misconstruction of some laws pertaining to the physical and mental. Not as of morality alone, but the entity should or must change the general attitude towards conditions about the entity - its hates, its fears; and trust in those promises that have been made.
Who healeth all thy disease? Who supplyeth life itself? Trust, then, in those promises. As has been given, "If ye call, I will hear and will answer." Use the abilities, then, of the body and of the mind, in a service to Him. (3220-1)
II. Rationale of Therapy
This may be classified into four main categories:
- Right attitude (physical, mental, spiritual).
- Specific treatments for the relief of respiratory symptoms, e.g., nasal congestion, shortness of breath, choking produced by excessive mucous production, etc.
- Treatment directed at the underlying cause(s), i.e., poor circulation, diversion of nervous activity, circulatory disturbances, superacidity, infections, etc.
- Preventive measures, such as avoidance of unfavorable conditions, e.g., cold air, irritant fumes (especially smoking), dust, exposure to sudden changes in atmospheric pressure, proper diet, etc.
III. Suggested Therapeutic Regimen
Of the many recommendations for specific and general treatment for bronchitis, certain treatment programs can be selected to suit the patient. One or two of the treatments suggested may be enough to turn the tide in the patient's favor rather than rigidly going through all the available treatments.
- Respiratory system:
- Inhalant (to combat irritation and stimulate better activity). Composition and quantities varied somewhat from case to case, as well as the order in which the components were to be added. Representative formula:
- To four ounces of pure grain alcohol add:
- Eucalyptol, 30 minims
- Benzosol, 15 minims
- Benzoin, 10 minims
- Rectified oil of turp, 5 minims
- Balsam of fir, or Canadian balsam, 5 minims
- Tincture of tolu in solution, 30 minims
- Place this solution in glass container twice the volume of the solution, with a glass stopper or cork. Shake well before use. Breathe through the nostril and mouth four to five times per day, several inhalations each time. (See 36-1.) Note: 1/60th grain heroin was part of this formula. This can probably be omitted without losing much.
- Virtually all the readings recommended some form of inhalant. See reading 5620-1 for another prescription for throat irritation.
- A vaporized inhalant was recommended for the pediatric age group (croup, asthma/ bronchitis):
- Eucalyptol, 1/2 teaspoon
- Compound tincture of benzoin, !/2 teaspoon
- Put these in one pint boiling water, kept boiling in room.
- Onion poultice over throat and chest. Directions: Cook onions, retain juice, mix with finely chopped corn meal (one-half to three-quarters teaspoon). Apply on a very thin cloth or between gauze. Amount about one-half inch thick.
- Antiphlogistine poultice. See reading 1346-2.
- Ipecac to induce vomiting in case of choking or clogging.
- Expectorant (also beneficial action on digestion and elimination). To four ounces of water add two ounces of strained pure honey (not synthetic). Let come to boil, skim off refuse, when near cool add four ounces pure apple brandy (not apple jack). Then in order named:
- Syrup of rhubarb, 1 ounce
- Syrup of horehound, 1 ounce
- Tincture of stillingia, 1/2 ounce
- Syrup of wild cherry, 11/2 ounces
- Chloroform, 10 minims
- Shake well before use. Dosage: One teaspoonful three times daily. See reading 25-6 for another form of expectorant.
- Calcidin in small quantities every five to ten minutes (not to be given with other medicines except during paroxysms of cough).
- Distilled water, 2 tablespoons
- Strained honey, 1 tablespoon
- Bring to boil, then skim off refuse; while still warm but not boiling add:
- Oil of eucalyptus, 20 minims
- Compound tincture of benzoin, 30 minims
- Dosage: one-half tablespoon to trickle down throat slowly with saliva.
- Chest massage: Use equal parts mutton suet, turpentine, spirits of camphor, compound tincture of benzoin.
- Treatment of associated conditions that might be aggravating problem, e.g., heart disease, anemia, etc.
- Antibiotics when indicated.
2. Correction of underlying causes:
- Poor elimination
- Colonics (removal of toxins);
- Laxatives (Bromo quinine laxative followed by chill tonic, Castoria with syrup of senna, etc.);
- Aids to better digestion, assimilation, elimination (Alcaroid tablets, bile salts, Codiron tablets);
- Osteopathic manipulations;
- Electric vibrator for better assimilation/elimination.
- Disturbance in nerve function
- Osteopathic manipulations for lesions in the spine (usually third, fourth dorsal; third, fourth, fifth cervical centers) but lumbar, sacral areas may be involved;
- Back and neck exercises (sometimes) for subluxations;
- Appliances: violet ray (in combination with the ash, sometimes) for correcting nerve imbalance; electric vibrator (relieving pressure on the heart).
- Disturbance in circulation
- Hydrotherapy for coordinating superficial and deep circulation;
- Spinal massage-enhances relaxation, circulation/ elimination;
- Bathing and massaging the feet with hot mustard water followed by a rub (see 1 100-7) to improve circulation;
- Alophen with 10 grains of aspirin and a good swallow of spirits frumenti is a good stimulant for capillary circulation;
- Musterole as a plaster over lower spine draws blood away from the upper portion, thus relieving congestion.
As in above under "Rationale of Therapy," an example on dietary advice is found in reading 3220-1, the gist of it being the avoidance of foods hard to digest during acute illness; avoiding starches, warning against mixing cereals and citrus fruits; plenty of beef juice encouraged as well as greens (vegetables, fruits); meats should be fish, fowl, lamb, etc.
For glandular imbalance - Fowler's solution (see 136-66); tonic to create better balance in the body (see 837-1); and for general build-up of the body, Atomidine (see 1100-7).
[Note: The preceding overview was written by Hezekiah U. Chinwah, M.D. and is excerpted from the Physician's Reference Notebook, Copyright © 1968 by the Edgar Cayce Foundation, Virginia Beach, VA.]