Dropsy is the malfunction of the digestive power in the liver and is called hydropsy from hydro which is water and pisis which is disease, whence hydropisis, as it were a watery disease. According to the opinion of the ancients its forms are three: ascites, hyposarca and tympanites. But treat none of these with the knife except the one which is called ascites, in order to draw off the water which is between the peritoneum and the intestine.
Therefore, when you wish to use the knife in the treatment of this type, do it in this fashion: press down at first on the belly with your hand so that all water descends to the pubic region. Then consider very carefully whether the generation of the water occurred from a part of the intestines or from the disease of the liver or the spleen.
After having made the perforation, introduce a