Those which act upon the alimentary canal: Simple bitters such as quassia wood, columbo root, taraxacum, gentian, chiretta, and many others, irritate gently the mucous membrane of the stomach and bowels, and by increasing the secretions improve the appetite and digestion.
Too much linseed, often used in preparing horses for market, gives a similar appearance, but is liable to induce fatty degeneration of the liver; given in moderation it regulates the bowels and stimulates the more perfect digestion of other foods.
The discharges from the bowels succeed each other with great frequency, and the painful feeling of pressure downwards (tenesmus) becomes so intense that the patient is constantly desiring to defecate.
The matters passed from the bowels, which at first resemble those of ordinary diarrhoea, soon change their character, becoming scanty, mucous or slimy, and subsequently mixed with, or consisting wholly of, blood, along with shreds of exudation thrown off from the mucous membrane of the intestine.
Should no improvement occur death may take place in from one to three weeks, either from repeated losses of blood, or from gradual exhaustion consequent on the continuance of the symptoms, in which case the discharges from the bowels become more offensive and are passed involuntarily.