Arsenicum album


Dr. S.R. Phatak describes the clinically confirmed symptoms of the homeopathic remedy Arsenicum Album in his Concise Materia Medica, published in 1977….


Generalities

      A very deep acting remedy, affecting every organ and tissue. MENTALLY the patient is extremely nervous; restless and anxious. Discharges of MUCOUS MEMBRANES are ACRID, THIN and SCANTY; coryza, saliva, sweat etc. Blood is disorganized causing pernicious type of anaemia and severe septic conditions. Haemorrhages, black, offensive. Weakness and emaciation is rapid. The prostration seems to be out of proportion to the rest of his illness. Pains are maddening, BURNING LIKE FIRE; hot needles or wires better heat. Pains are even felt during sleep; awake the patient. Pains cause shortness of breath or chilliness. Pains alternating between head, stomach or body. It acts on the nerves producing inveterate neuralgias and multiple neuritis better heat. Frequent fainting. Trembling, jerking, convulsions and choreic twitchings. Sudden intense effects; SUDDEN GREAT WEAKNESS from trivial causes. VERY RESTLESS; restless even in affected part; even stupor is interrupted by fits of restlessness, with anxious moaning. Low vitality. Gradual loss of weight. PUTRID CADAVERIC ODOURS. Emaciation. Paralysis. Destructive process_carbuncles, gangrene, cancer; malignancy. Dropsy; pale, puffy, baggy, SWELLING. Spleen is enlarged in malarial fever, kala-azar. Child better when carried about quickly. Ill effects of eating ices; poor diet, fruits esp watery, tobacco, quinine, sea bathing and travelling, mountain climbing. Care, grief, fright, ptomaine poisoning, dissecting wounds. It is a prophylactic for yellow fever. Acute and chronic burns. Epilepsy; suddenly becomes unconscious with convulsions. Restlessness; then becomes drowsy.

Worse

      PERIODICALLY; MIDNIGHT; after midnight; After. 2 A.M.; 14 days; yearly. COLD; ICES, DRINKS; COLD FOODS; Cold air, cold and damp. VEGETABLES. Watery fruits. DRINKING LIQUIDS, ALCOHOLISM. Infections. Bad meat, food. Eruptions undeveloped or suppressed. Quinine. Lying on affected part. EXERTION. Tobacco, chewing. Sea shore.

Better

      HOT; APPLICATIONS (Dry); FOOD; drinks. Warm wraps. Motion. Walking about. LYING, with head elevated. Sitting erect. Company. Sweating. Open air.

Mind

      Oversensitive. Anxious. Fastidious. Fault finding. ANGUISH; despair of recovery. EXACTING. AGONISING FEAR OF DEATH; yet tired of living, worse night. Fear; of death, from starvation; of financial loss. VIOLENCE; self torture, pulls her hair, bites her nails, tears his own body. Suicidal; impulses, mania Restless, changes place continually, wants to go from one bed to other; children are capricious, want to be carried; want to go from father to mother, to nurse. Melancholy. Sees vermin; throws away bugs by handfuls. Suspicious. Fear of being left alone, lest he do himself bodily harm. Fears he has murdered somebody. Miserly, malicious, selfish. Lacks courage. Irritable; increasingly. Sensitive to disorder. Delirium tremens. Dotage. Fixed ideas, hallucinations. Imagines house full of thieves; jumps and hides. Hasty. Sees ghosts day and night. Groans, moans and weeps, during menses. Her desire exceeds her needs. Does not want to meet his acquaintances, thinks he has offended them.

Head

      Ache, congestive better cold, Restless head, it is in constant motion.Pain over left eye. Hemicrania, with icy feeling. Vertigo; with loss of consciousness, during coughing fits, in asthmatics, before epilepsy. Scalp very sensitive; cannot brush hair. Hair becomes grey early; falling of hair. Dandruff. Chronic eruptions filled with pus. Pain alternates between head or stomach or body worse by people’s talk. Walks with head thrown backwards.

Eyes

      Sunken or protruding. Burning in eyes, with acrid lachrymation. Oedema around eyes. Intense photophobia. Lids granulated. Spasms of the eye lids. Everything appears green; sees as through a white gauze. Conjunctiva; injected; yellow. Scrofulous ophthalmia. Eyelids red and ulcerated. Falling of lashes. Eye lids oedematous.

Ears

      Thin, offensive, excoriating discharge. Roaring in ears, during pain. Hard hearing, to human voice.

Nose

      Thin, watery, excoriating discharge. Nose feels stopped up, with fluent coryza. Nose colds descend to chest. Cold sores; in nose. Sneezing, without relief. Can not bear the sight or smell of food. Hay fever. Knotty swelling of the nose. Nose pointed. Acne of nose. Nose bleed, after fit of passion or vomiting. Dyspnoea felt in nose. Sneezing, with biting watery coryza.

Face

      PALE; anxious, sunken, haggard or distorted, hippocratic, covered with cold sweat. Old look; in children. Oedematous swelling of face. Burning, stinging pains as from red hot needles. Lips; black, livid. Eruptions on lips. Cancer of lips. Black dots, acne.

S.R. Phatak
A pioneer of Homoeopathy in Maharashtra, Dr Shankar Raghunath Phatak was born on 6th September, 1896. He did his MBBS from Grant Medical College, in 1924. Started his practice but somehow not satisfied with Allopathic Treatment.

He was convinced about Homoeopathy while going through Sir William Osler's writings on 'History of Medicine' so switched over to an entirely Homoeopathic Practice in 1932. He also started working on Homoeopathic literature along with his Practice.

He has contributed immensely to homoeopathic literature. He was an ardent follower of Dr Boger. His Repertory is based on Boger's ''A Synoptic key to Materia Medica'.