Life in Cancer alike to other forms of Life. The indicated remedy must be found; general hints for finding it. The prescriber compared to a gardener. Case of Cancer of Pylorus that had been unsuccessfully operated on.
THE matter, then, is one of sympathetic relationship; the life of a collection of cancer cells obeys the same laws as the life of any other living body. It has come into being by a process of germination and it is to be dispersed by a force that sets agoing a similar but antagonising process. The difficulty of cure lies in the difficulty in discovering the sympathetic force.
But just as the experienced gardener knows the conditions that are most favourable for development of the energies of certain seed, so ought the experienced practitioner to know the conditions that in the diseases patient will call into activity the curative energies of his remedy.
The consideration of this aspect of the question is likely to lead to much that is controverted; it will suffice to say that I have met with very little difficulty in this particular class of diseases in arriving at the indicated remedies.
In this regard I have not allowed myself to be swayed by the teachings of the high dilutionists of the Homoeopathic School, or by the teachings of those who contend that some special symptom should constitute a key-note and that this should be our guide to the selection of the remedy; nor have I been guided by the more modern and material school, who insist that the curative dose should correspond in size with the pathogenic dose, and that no remedy can be relied on as a curative unless it has produced the actual disease for which it is prescribed.
On the contrary, I take into consideration all the bearings both of the disease tendencies and of the symptoms past and present, and in accordance with these I select my remedy.
Thus, in the case of abdominal cancer referred to, I learned before prescribing that the period came dark and in clotted lumps, that she had had a sensation of something moving inside the abdomen, with a livid complexion changing now and then to yellow, and a general feeling of pressure in the abdomen, with weighty feeling towards the womb; these, added to my general experience with the effects of this particular remedy, led me to Crocus Sativus.
But it is impossible to dwell on such particular for very long; they would by themselves fill a volume.
The physician prescribing for such cases as these may well be compared with the experienced gardener who bases his selection of the suitable soil for particular seeds upon a general experience, much of which it is impossible to communicate by word of mouth.
It is easy for the gardener to state the plain fact of having chosen a particular soil and a special season for any given seed, but he can do little more than this; he has probably forgotten the many little experiences that from time to time influenced him it may be unconsciously in his determination. His advantages over the doctor largely resided in the fact the from boyhood he has been in the habit of gardening; the doctor has never prescribed until he theoretically knew much, and practically knew nothing; until, in fact, the best part of his life was lost in acquiring the crudest theories of the actions of medicines.
To go on to actual experience. Take this case of CANCER OF THE PYLORUS, Geo. A. Murrell, aged 40, first seen by me July 22, 1898.
History. Fifteen or eighteen years subject to dyspeptic pains, and twelve years ago strained himself lifting a kitchen range; felt the strain severely below the chest, and dates his suffering from then, though even before this was dyspeptic. Was treated in the Heart Hospital under Dr., after having been an out-patient for six months previously. Here his heart was pronounced affected, with old pleuritic sounds down left side, along with ulceration of the stomach. Then as out-patient (he was discharged from Hospital end of October, 1896) was again treated, chiefly with electricity.
In the middle of January, 1898, severe pain set in between the liver and stomach and he went into West minister Hospital, the diagnosis being neuralgia of the stomach from gastric catarrh. Was discharged unrelieved; and was then seen by several other physicians, and in March was advised to go into the Cancer Hospital, Brompton, where he was operated on; the statement made to him after the operation being that adhesions had been found between the stomach and thoracic wall, with a cancerous growth and thickening of the pyloric, extremity of the duodenum, and that it was impossible to remove all the diseased tissue. Some temporary relief followed upon the operation, and he was discharged from the hospital under promise of his returning of pain reappeared.