Aconitum


Proving Symptoms of homeopathy medicine Aconitium, described by Richard Hughes in his book, A Cyclopedia of Drug Pathogenesis, published in 1895….


Introduction

Aconitum Anthora, L.: A Clammarum, left; A ferox, Wall.; A Napellus, L. [Where no species is mentioned, it will be understood that the A. Napellus was employed] Wolfsbane (A. Napellus) Monkshood Blue rocket, Helmet flower. Nat Ord. Ranunculaceae.

Provings

1. HAHNEMANN, Fragmenta de Viribus Medicamentorum Positivis, 1805. Contains 138 symptoms observed by self, and 75 from authors. 2. IBID., Mat. Medorrhinum Pura, vol. i of original and translation. Contains 431 symptoms from self and 7 fellow- observers, and 110 from authors.

3. A. BR-, a healthy peasant girl, very robust, age. 22, took on successive days 5,10, and 20 drops of tinct. without effect. On 18th January took 30 drops; confusion of head, feeling of heat in evening 19th. – 40 drops; after 2 hours confusion of head, sometimes changing into heavy feeling and pressive pain in crown and forehead; loathing, nausea, general malaise with painful heaviness in limbs. After 5 hours pressive pain in scrobiculus cordis, dry feeling in mouth, great thirst. Felt so unwell, head so confused, giddy, and painful, limbs so heavy, that she had to go to bed. Face hot, hands and feet cold; pulse contracted, hard, moderately quick. After 9 hours pressive pain in forehead, face turgid red, eyes sparkling, dry feeling in mouth, tongue moderately moist, slightly furred, no appetite, great thirst, oppression of chest, shallow quick breathing, with frequent deep breathing and sighing. No pains, but heaviness and fulness in chest, anxiety and palpitation of heart. Heart’s beats strong, pulse fuller than usual, hard and strong, at same time moderately quickly; skin warm, urine clear and reddish. After 12 hours heat and restlessness increased, tosses about from one side to another. In right thorax some pressive pain. After 16 hours (9 p.m.), more tranquil last hours, general warm sweat. Headache, throat, and breathing difficulties relieved. Pulse large, soft, and slow. Only confusion of head and perceptible beating of heart complained of 11 p.m. Sleeps sound and quietly. No stool since yesterday morning. Ate nothing all days. 20th January- Slept quietly all night, skin moist on walking. Somewhat fatigued and head rather confused, this went off during day. (HENCKE, Archiv f. Hom. Heilk., xxx,1.)

4. Dr. C. Hencke took, 1st October, 1841, at 6 a.m., 4 drops of tinct. in a teaspoonful of water. Some pressure in stomach after 1 hour 2nd, 6 a.m., 8 drops in 1 oz. of water. Pressive pain in stomach (After 1 hour) lasting 1 hour. Heaviness and fulness in chest when walking; he felt as though the chest could not be expanded, compelling him to breathe deeply often (forenoon). 3rd, 6 a.m., 10 drops. Increased full feeling in chest when walking. Palpitation of heart felt when walking; flying stitches in cardiac region, sometimes felt when at rest. tiresome pressure on crown (forenoon.). 4th, 6 a.m., 24 drops. Tiresome pressive headache, first in crown, then in forehead, where it caused feeling of heaviness and fulness, lasting several hours, aggravated by movement (forenoon). Flying stitches in chest here and there; full feeling in chest; pressive pains on sternum; some palpitation of heart when walking and frequent deep breathing. Three liquid stools of foetid dissolved faeces during day. Icy cold feet (evening.) 5th, 6 a.m., 30 drops Headache, full feeling. Three watery stools with slight griping. Urine passed in morning brown, on standing turbid, and with dirty. Urine passed in morning brown, on standing turbid and with dirty brown sediment. Feet and hands icy cold (evening). 6th. – Many confused dreams during past night. The feeling of weight and fulness in chest more troublesome, compels him to breathe deeply even when at rest, accompanied by internal restlessness, anxiety, and palpitation of heart. Pressive pain in region of heart. Three watery stools with rumbling in bowels and qualmishness, anxiety, and palpitation of heart. Pressive pain in region of heart. Three watery stools with slight griping. Urine passed in morning brown, on standing turbid, and with dirty brown sediment. Feet and hands icy cold evening. 6th. – Many confused dreams during past night. The feeling of weight and fulness in chest more troublesome, compels him to breathe deeply even when at rest, accompanied by internal restlessness, anxiety, and palpitation of heart. pressive pain in region of heart. Three watery stools with rumbling in bowels and qualmishness. 7th. – Dreamt much at night. Oppression of chest internal restlessness, palpitation of heart, even when at rest, pressive pain in cardiac region as yesterday. Confusion of head, pressure in forehead, frequent heat in face, cold hands and feet, especially evening. Indisposed to mental exertion. Two dreams. Great confusion of head and pressive pain in forehead on waking. frequent deep breathing while driving. The weight and full feeling in chest, internal uneasiness, palpitation etc., went off on taking exercise in open air. Qualmish feeling in abdomen. Great feeling of hunger, renewed after eating. No stool. 9th and 10th. – Symptoms gradually went off. (Ibid.)

5a. N-, married, choleric temperament, in good health. a. Proved mixture of 2 drops of tinct. to 40 of water. 1st day- At 7:30 p.m. 8 drops. Soon afterwards drowsiness when driving, eyes closed for some seconds. After 3/4 hours, several times in a few morning, violent spasmodic yawning, repeated at 10 p.m.; fell fast asleep in chair till 1 a.m. 2nd days – At 6 a.m. hurried call to stool, with copious soft evacuation with straining; no other symptoms.

5b. Some days later same mixture. 1st days. – At 2 p.m. 8 drops, at 6 p.m. 5 drops at 7:30 p.m. 20 drops. Soon afterwards violent yawning without drowsiness; great laziness and faint qualmishness, no actual nausea. Painful rumbling in bowels and discharge of flatus, with relief. After one hour urging to stool, copious evacuation, followed by some straining. 2nd days. – Dry, short cough, several soft stools, with hurried urging.

5c. Some days later proved solution of 5 drops in 30 drops of spirit. Of this 8 drops morning, noon, and evening. Nothing observed but slight emotional disturbance, flushes of heat, especially in face and ears, slight pressive pain in head in right frontal protuberance, spreading to upper orbital border, soon going off. (Ibid.)

6. W-, age. 19, phthisical habitus, sanguine temperament. Took, 2nd October, 4 drops; 3rd, 8 drops; 4th, 10 drops; 5th, 12 drops of tinct. On 5th confusion of head, pressive pain in sinciput, heaviness in forehead. 6th, from 8 to 10 a.m., three liquid stools with severe griping. During day increased headache, heavy feeling in chest, difficulty of breathing, frequent palpitation of heart. 7th. – Pressive pains in head with pressure on eyes; two watery stools in day with severe cutting in bowels; frequent dry cough, occasionally with expectoration of bright red blood, but without pain in chest. 8th. – Headache continues; sleep but little disturbed by cough; heavy feeling in chest; difficult breathing, sometimes sighing; strong palpitation of heart; difficult breathing, sometimes sighing; strong palpitation of heart; dry cough, with occasional expectoration of bright red blood; one loose stool. 9th. – Cough with slight bloody expectoration of bright red blood; one loose stool. 9th. – Cough with slight bloody expectoration; breathing oppressed as yesterday; somewhat exhausted; internal anxiety; little appetite. 10th. -Only cough, not severe, no blood expectorate. 11th. – The cough continued, growing gradually less till the 15th, when it went off. (Ibid.)

6. [The tincture used in the Austrian provings was the Hahnemannian, prepared by mixing the expressed juice of the whole plant with equal parts of spirit of wine.-EDS.] a. Dr. F. H. Arneth took. 26th February, 1843, 10 drops of tinct. fasting. Some hour afterwards 20 drops. Nothing felt but burning on tongue. 21st, fasting, 15 drops. Immediately burning on tongue, great pressure and sometimes shooting in anterior, not superficial parts of eyeball. 22nd, morning and evening, 20 drops. 23rd. – At noon 30 drops. Almost immediately same pains in eye, occurring several times during day. From 26th. (though no medicine was taken since 23rd) signs of a chill, severe coryza, shivering over back, especially in evening.; slight oppression of breathing, with slight pressure under sternum, sometimes flying heat, quick, rather full pulse, etc; nights very restless, with vivid dreams of things that happened during the day. 28th, morning and evening, 25 drops. Moderate increase of all the described symptoms. 29th. – In forenoon 40 drops. Besides above symptoms, immediately after taking medicine some pinching about navel, as after taking manna, soon followed by easy, painless diarrhoea, later pressive pain on right eyebrow. Towards evening the febrile symptoms increased greatly, for which he took (not knowing the medicine he was proving) some globules of acon. 7. The next night restless, with dreams about his patients. Feeling no better he took on morning. of 30th some globule of acon. without relief. The febrile state lasted till 8th March, with all the previous symptoms. On 7th March the difficulty of breathing increased, especially on left side of chest in cardiac region, with intermitting pulse; five beats were always hard, full, in rapid succession, the sixth was an intermission. This lasted all day. He got pale, emaciated, his gait and whole appearance betokened illness, and this was observed by others. Burning along urethra when urinating. 9th. – Feeling of shortening of tendons in hough, pain in left patella as from a bruise. This lasted the 10th and 11th. On 12th for more than 10 morning, peculiar feeling in eyes, like that felt by amaurotics in first stage, a warmth and undulation in both eyes, with involuntary half closure of lids, and, though the room was quite light, felt as though he could not read for want of light; he could read, however. 13th. was followed by tearing and drawing, with lameness in head of left humerus for 2 hours. 15th. – Feeling of shortening of both tendines Achillis; had a difficulty in standing quite erect after sitting some time, knees gave way. This lasted nearly 3 weeks, and only went off 5th April.

6b. On 5th April took in morning fasting and about noon, each time a tablespoonful of 3rd dil. [The German dilutions are (unless otherwise specified) on the decimal scale, the mother tincture being the zero.-EDS] Immediately pressive pain in frontal region, especially above right eyebrow, with dread of being shaken while driving. The same after two like doses next day. 7th and 8th. – In morning, fasting, and at noon a tablespoonful of 2nd dil., and on 9th and 10th as much of 1st dil. Nights very restless, dreamt of things that had occurred long ago, but of which he had not though for years, so vividly, that after waking they were still before his eyes. Next morning always confusion of head and blowing bright red blood from nose. On 10th some confusion of head. He took nothing more, and felt thenceforth quite well.

6c. On 20th took, fasting, 50 drops of tinct. No symptoms. 21st. – 60 drops tinct. Blowing of blood from nose, pressive pain in head. 23rd. – 80 drops. Eruption of vesicles on both temples, restless night 23rd. -100 drops. Blowing blood from nose, violent twitching of extremities on going to sleep, which woke him up; restless night. Yesterday and to-day, immediately after the dose, violent inclination to vomit, which was allayed after breakfast. 24th. – 130 drops. Immediately violent inclination to vomit, lasting till after dinner (4 p.m.), and great confusion of head. After this no more medicine and no more symptoms. (Oest. Ztsch. f. Hom., vol. i.)

7a. Dr. BOHM had suffered some years previously from haemoptysis, and after great exertion still occasionally sees traces of blood in the sputa. a. He took on 3rd February 5 drops of tinct. on sugar. immediately burning, acrid, dry feeling on soft palate and fauces, not going off after breakfast, and causing frequent empty swallowing. After 1 hour frequent empty eructation with sourish taste; tickling in larynx causing cough. At noon want of appetite, empty eructation; after eating, discomfort and pressive feeling in scrobiculus cordis and upper abdomen. Towards evening hunger; frequent stitches in middle of sternum, with very cheerful humour. Sleep at night, though uninterrupted, appeared so light and superficial that in the morning, though he did not feel tired, he thought he had not slept at all. All symptoms, except those of digestion, lasted on 4th, and at night felt as if he slept in the air and had no firm support. 7th. – At 4:30 p.m. 10 drops in water. Immediately empty eructation, slight pressure in stomach. After 3 hours dry feeling in fauces, it touched. Feeling of weariness and exhaustion in chest, coughing hawked up mucus streaked with blood; on posterior surface of sternum constant feeling of soreness all day, as though he had been struck; in evening greatly increased warmth of palms and cheeks. Went early to bed, and could with difficulty fall asleep on account of great excitement, which he sought to allay by drinking much. Next morning after light sleep, not rested; all day burning in eyes. The sensitiveness of chest lasted, with gradually diminishing intensity, during the evening and night fever till 12th February. By 13th he was quite well.

7b. 22nd. – At 6 p.m. took 4 drops, without symptoms. 27th. – In morning, fasting, took 30 drops on sugar. Soon afterwards burning on both sides of tongue, as from aphthae; dryness on soft palate and constriction in gullet, not going off on drinking cold water. This lasted till afternoon and interfered with speech. Constant flow of saliva into mouth, and frequent risings from scrobiculus cordis; he feared nausea or and frequent risings from scrobiculus cordis; he feared nausea or vomiting. Distaste for wheaten bread. Frequent attacks of giddiness when walking and driving. Walking and speaking tire him, he feels very exhausted. At noon anorexia, tongue like leather, prostration in evening increased heat of skin, flying stitches along sternum and between ribs; he must go early to bed; sleep restless, broken, not refreshing. Though he had drunk much did not urinate at night. In morning urine red, and when passed burning in orifice or urethra. 28th. – Better after breakfast, but at 11 a.m. violent rigor spreading over back and chest, also recurring very disagreeably on least movement during subsequent great heat (with frontal headache). A violent cough with sharp stitches in various parts of thorax compelled him to lie always on his back, as lying on either side aggravated it. In evening as if stupefied and very cross; at night restless, sweat after midnight with relief; urine as yesterday. 29th. – Though still exhausted and looking ill, went about his business. At 3 p.m. a repetition of febrile attack, but chill is weaker than yesterday, heat more moderate, pulse quick, 96, frequent cough, with shaking pain of whole chest, expectoration occasionally brownish red, rust coloured; sleep better, perspiration profuse, towards morning great relief. 1st April. – After constipation for 3 days a normal stool; more frequent micturition, cough rarer, less painful, appetite normal. In afternoon attack of chill and heat, not lasting long; night good. From this time the fever disappeared. For some days pressive pain in forehead and drawing pain in right upper arm. (Ibid.)

8. a DR. GERSTEL took, 5th January, in morning, fasting, 6 drop of tinct. in water without effect. 6th. – 8th drops. Soon giddy confusion of head in right side of forehead when walking in open air, bruised pain in nape on moving it, as if confined to certain muscles, especially in evening and at night when lying down. The coryza, previously fluent, became dry. At night in sleep feeling of dryness in mouth and fauces, compelling him to drink on waking. Soon afterwards profuse but transient sweat all over body, and continued unusual transpiration, and again in morning profuse transient sweat. 7th. – In morning 10 drops. Soon transient weariness of legs on commencing to walk. The pain in nape continues. 8th, morning 16 drops. For an hour cooling burning in fauces, afterwards in tongue as from pepper or saltpetre. Pain in nape continues. 10th, noon, 20 drops. Immediately hot feeling in chest, and disagreeable feeling about heart. The taste of pepper in fauces came later. 11th. – At 10:30 p.m., 20 drops. Slept restlessly or woke often with pepper taste in mouth. 12th, morning, 27 drops. Some headache, pressive stupefying pain in frontal region, getting worse about 6 p.m. A pressing out in temple, with fulness in forehead and prickling and smarting in eyelids as in commencing catarrh; at same time flush of heat. Scraping in throat, and palpitation of heart. The pain in nape, which had ceased for three days, troubled him all day. 13th and 14th. – No symptoms. l 15th. Of 40 drops in a glass of water, with 100 drops of alcohol, took in morning fasting, a fourth part. Continued pepper taste on tongue, flow of water into mouth, hot feeling in and over chest; pain in forehead and temples; eructation of air and nausea from stomach, going off after breakfast; violent palpitation of heart with disagreeable feeling in cardiac region; tickling itching on inner side of left upper arm; burning and agreeable warm feeling along back of left index; cold spreading over inside of lower limbs from middle of thighs downwards, especially on knees and feet, then pressing pain in left temple, and pressure and giving in chin. After 1 hours bruised pain in middle of thighs, and unusual coldness of feet even in room and when walking. About noon took same dose. Immediately recurrence of the pain in left temple, first a pressing, then a slight soreness, at same time feeling as if forehead and face, especially left side, swelled. This feeling of swelling gradually spreads almost all over body, especially left side, and is accompanied by many painful sensations, as bruised pain of muscles, bruised feeling or pressure in bones, sometimes in one or other rib, sometimes in left arm. The left side of forehead, face, arms, and upper part of chest is longest affected; at same time crampy feeling at heart. Whilst left cheek feels swollen and hot it is cool to touch; formication in right cheek and right forearm. From left side of face sensation spreads to ear, as if something lay before it, but pain seems to be in bone around auricle. Painful feeling in thigh and arms passes gradually into a numb sensation. About 4 p.m. a constant chilliness or even coldness over whole body, especially in feet and knees; occasionally when swallowing aching in right. Eustachian tube; soreness and itching in tarsal edges, and bruised pain in various parts of body. Pulse at 3:30 67, small, easily compressible; about 4 p.m. 74, beats stronger. About 5 p.m. pulse 102, full, and hard. Whilst feeling of coolness is predominant in lower limbs an agreeable warmth spreads over rest of body, with transient anxiety and warm feeling about heart. Bursting out of sweet over forehead and praecordium. Later sweat broke out all over body, especially on head, nape, chest, and abdomen, while feet remained always as if a cool wind blew on them. At same time a pressure on upper eyelids of both eyes alternately, and occasional sensation as if whole eyeball were pressed into orbit, so that eye pained as if contused. The heat of body especially face (with red cheeks), and the tiresome pains in forehead, temples, eyes, and nape lasted all evening, with very accelerated and strong heart’s beats. About 6 p.m. moderate thirst. In evening, good appetite, slept well, and in morning more sweat. 16th and 17th. – Took remainder of solution. On 16th felt slight sense of coldness, and on both days come lassitude and pain in nape, eyes, and head.

8b. 23rd February. -40 drops of tinct in water at once. After 1 hour shooting and drawing pain in left upper and lower maxillae, in right molars in both tibiae and arms, but especially in left side of nape; at same time feeling of swelling of left cheeks, pressure in stomach, empty eructation, burning on tip of tongue with flow of water into mouth, all in rapid succession. More constant was a penetrating shooting at lower end of inner side of left forearm; heaviness and out-pressure in right side of head with slight drawing burning pain in border of right lower alveoli. The very fine shooting or shooting burning pains as if in the skin, felt in various parts of body, were sometimes accompanied by a feeling of heaviness, numbness, or swelling. A continued disagreeable feeling about hart, as if a heavy body lay there; later it was pressive and burning with accompanying pressure and flush of heat over back. Heaviness and confusion of head with tiresome pressure on left eyeball. In forenoon while walking in open air in foggy, muggy weather, – chilliness over both arms, especially left; continued pressing pain in left shoulder, apparently in conjunction with drawing and numb sensation in left occiput and posterior external aspect of left upper arm, followed by feeling of powerlessness of these parts, especially of the upper arm. About 11 a.m. when sitting still, agreeable warmth, especially from back over whole body, with moderate sweat. Continued weariness of legs, especially on going upstairs. When walking slight pains in upper abdomen and frequent fruitless calls to stool. Very frequent micturition; urine hot and high coloured. Sexual desire several times very excited. Went to bed at 2 a.m., was long of falling asleep, and sleep was not sound; vexatious quarrelsome dreams. 24th. – Had slept but little; in forenoon frequent attacks of colic, with distension of abdomen, relieved by discharge of flatus; at same time exhaustion, frequent slight chills over back and thighs, increased urine. Afternoon, during stool, cutting in bowels, which went through chest like sharp knife stabs, almost compelling him to cry out, at same time almost barrel-like distension of abdomen. After pappy stool relief, and after disagreeable feeling of burning and shooting about heartfelt quite well. That night quiet sleep. 27th. – 1/2 hour after breakfast 40 drops in water at once Immediately drawing in right side of nape; feeling of pressure on instep of right foot; as if something lay before right ear; pressure in fauces. IN forenoon frequent fine stitches, aching and stoppage in left ear, as in catarrh. Some of the symptoms, as those of the ear, the throat pain, the flush of heat, the shooting drawing pains in left temple, etc., occur when entering the room, and go off when walking in open air. At noon nauseous taste at root of tongue, that goes off while eating and comes back thereafter; empty eructation; some pressure in stomach and fauces, with slight burning and flow of saliva. Afternoon, great discharge of flatus, at night horrible dreams. Next day, 28th, several recurrences of the disgusting taste; in mouth and repeated sexual excitement. 29th. – Well. 1st March. – At 11 a.m., 50 drops in water. Only a few transient symptoms occurred: weariness of legs pressure in left eyeball and right orbital region; burning in fauces, pressure in stomach; griping in upper part of abdomen with distension of abdomen; somewhat increased transpiration with general warmth. Afternoon, uncommon feeling of comfort in whole body. (Ibid.)

Richard Hughes
Dr. Richard Hughes (1836-1902) was born in London, England. He received the title of M.R.C.S. (Eng.), in 1857 and L.R.C.P. (Edin.) in 1860. The title of M.D. was conferred upon him by the American College a few years later.

Hughes was a great writer and a scholar. He actively cooperated with Dr. T.F. Allen to compile his 'Encyclopedia' and rendered immeasurable aid to Dr. Dudgeon in translating Hahnemann's 'Materia Medica Pura' into English. In 1889 he was appointed an Editor of the 'British Homoeopathic Journal' and continued in that capacity until his demise. In 1876, Dr. Hughes was appointed as the Permanent Secretary of the Organization of the International Congress of Homoeopathy Physicians in Philadelphia. He also presided over the International Congress in London.