Reasons



Rx. Tc. Aralia racemosa 2, and it cured cito’ tuto’ et jucunde and that not because Aralia is good for coughs, and has an affinity for the respiratory organs merely, but because it is capable of causing a cough like the one that was to be cured.

This happened somewhere about six or seven years ago, and I have since cured this kind of cough with Aralia, whenever I have come across it, and at a rough guess I should say that would be thirty or forty times.

CASE II.-Tussis Araliae.-A lady came under my observation last summer. She resides in the West End of London, and had been under competent homoeopathic treatment for her throat, and had certainly derived benefit, but still her cough did not leave her, so that she was on the point of removing from London and going to the South, whereof she is a native, she and her friends having become apprehensive lest her chest should become affected. Her cough was not identical with Mrs. N.’s, but the only difference was that it did not come on till after a first sleep of not long duration. Patient would go to bed quite well (so did Mrs., N., and so did Dr. S.A.Jones) and lie down and go to sleep, and after a short sleep, would wake up with a severe fit of coughing that would last an hour or more.

Aralia 3 cured it entirely in a few days, and she gave up all idea of returning to the South.

CASE III.-Tussis Araliae.-A child of not quite six gets croupy coughs in damp weather that usually yield to Dulcamara. Occasionally, however, there remains the kind of nocturnal cough described in Case II, viz. she will go to bed, lie down, fall off to sleep, and presently awake with a violent bout of coughing. Originally, before thinking of Aralia, I had in vain given Hyoscyamus, Gelsemium, Aconitum, Spongia, Hepar, Dulcamara, Phosphorus and Bryonia. Then the early nocturnal character of the cough determined me to try Aralia, and with prompt effect.

CASE IV.-Tussis Araliae.-An asthmatic gentleman of 50 years of age, with moderate emphysema of the lungs, has long been under my care. At first he was almost always short of breath on exertion, and had bad nocturnal attacks of dyspnoea and cough. A prolonged course of constitutional treatment has at last partially cured him, but when he catches a cold he gets an attack of bronchial catarrh with early nocturnal cough.

It would be tedious to give the treatment of his whole case, but it will suffice to say it consisted principally of antipsorics and hepatics.

One day this gentleman said he wished I could give him a medicine for his cough, to have by his bedside at night, because otherwise when he caught cold (as at this time) he would go to bed quite well, fall asleep, and presently awake with a violent fit of asthma that would last from one to two hours, more or less, then he would get up a little phlegm and go to sleep again.

I prescribed one-drop powders of Aralia 3x, pro re nata. The next time I had occasion to see this gentleman he exclaimed, “I thought those powders would have killed me. I took one as you directed, when my cough became much more violent than I had ever known it, but it soon ceased, and has never returned.”

He keeps some of these powders by his bedside ever since, and on various occasions they have helped him, thus far unfailingly. He has not had an aggravation since the first time of using them.

These cases are samples only, but they teach a useful lesson: to give more than these would be irksome.

It will be seen that Aralia, although a new remedy, is a comparatively old friend of mine, and I can confidently commend it for early nocturnal cough that occurs either immediately on lying down, or COMMONLY after a first fore-midnightly sleep.

Professor Samuel Jones cough was immediately after he had lain down, but it will be noted that he did not retire till midnight, whereas all my patients, I believe, went to bed before. From a fairly extensive experience of Aralia as cough remedy I have formed the conclusion that it is homoeopathic to its cough by reason of its time and patient’s recumbent position.

It is no good, I believe, in cough occurring at any time on lying down, neither does it avail in a cough caused by a relaxed uvula; neither will it, as far as I am aware, cure any lung lesion whatsoever beyond bronchial irritation and catarrh. And most positively it is no good at all in the after midnightly or 2 or 3 a.m. dyspnoea and cough of genuine asthma. In such cases I have given it in vain. But for the previously described variety of cough it is a remedium probatissimum. Here, for the thousandth time, we see the exactness of our homoeopathic science. In conclusion, my thanks to Professor Hale for introducing my now dear friend, Aralia, and my still greater gratitude to Professor Samuel Jones for the more intimate scientific acquaintance. As homoeopaths we owe a deep debt of gratitude to drug provers.

XXV

It may be about three years ago, or thereabouts, that it was my duty to give and opinion on the state of a gentleman of middle age, resident in London, and who was considered in a dying state. He had not much faith in any medical man, or in any pathy, and had for years wandered from one physician to another for his serious heart disease and frightful dyspepsia. The allopaths did him most good, he thought, on the whole, with their remedies, but the good effects did not last. The prescriptions showed that his state had been correctly diagnosed, and not badly treated from their standpoint. He received in turn cordials, iodides, antacids and tonics, but his disease-aneurysm of the aorta-got worse.

The homoeopaths had treated him symptomatically-and he had plenty of symptoms-and once or twice he really thought he was cured for a day or two, but then he became suddenly as bad as ever-his aneurysm evidently got larger.

When I first saw him he seemed almost moribund, and had received the last rites of the Church.

After going over his case well, and taking into account the state of his tissues and organs and the size of his aneurysm, so far as that could be determined, I gave as my opinion that he might slowly get better, and be eventually cured of his disease.

That gentleman has since married, and the aneurysm, though not yet quite gone, is slowly yielding to homoeopathic treatment, freely applied under diagnostic commonsense.

The principal remedies were Aurum met, Chelidonium majus, Carduus, Ceanothus, Glandium quercus, Aconitum, Ferrum, Cactus grand, and Baryta muriatica, the first named and the four last being directly-specifically-curative. My knowledge of the use of Barium is due to Dr. Flint, and this is not the first or second time that Homoeopathy has cured aneurysm.

I saw my patient walking along the street a few days since with his wife, and I was quite struck with his healthy, ruddy appearance. The power of Homoeopathy over aneurysm gives my twenty-fifth reason for being a homoeopath-and that lands me just half-way with my fifty reasons. Have you thus far conceived any greater respect for Homoeopathy, or can you explain all my reasons away? At least you are beginning to see that my statement at your uncle’s house was not boastfulness, but a mere statement of fact. Pray understand that I am not in the least desirous of making you, or anybody else, a homoeopath; it makes no difference whatever to me. Nor does it make any difference to truth: truth will get on very well without any of you.

Nor do I anticipate any particular good from all this scribbling of my fifty reasons to you; I do it just to substantiate my own position, and slap the jeering ignorance of orthodoxy in the face.

XXVI

You complain that I indulge in too much abuse, and that I am unnecessarily pugnacious and offensive. Perhaps so. Did you not have the impertinence to call the homoeopaths quacks? You who know nothing about what they do! and do not you allopaths, every man of you, go about day by day and slander the homoeopaths!

You allopaths bear false witness against your homoeopathic neighbours every day of your lives-did I not once hear you say to your aunt at table, “Oh, yes, Auntie, take some of your little homoeopathic pilules, they won’t hurt!”

You said I must give you my fifty reasons out of my own life’s work, as I had promised, or”come down the tree”.

Well, I sit firmly on a very big bough of the old tree of truth, and it is not an ignorant allopath who will ever dislodge me.

It may be half a dozen years ago that an unusually beautiful, sweet girl, a good way in her twenties, residing in an important provincial town, was noticed to fade and get weak, with peculiar ill-defined throat symptoms, weakness in her back, rectal and uterine irritation, weakness and emaciation. People could not think what had come over her. She is one of those human highbreds who will not cave in, but, if duty calls, will go on till they drop: till then, existing on their “go” rather than on their physique.

In life they are commonly misunderstood, and because they can put on a spurt or clear a very high-fenced difficulty au besoin, the unknowing and non-observant think they are really strong, but are lazy or sham.

“Oh! she nursed her nieces for weeks and never had her clothes off, but did not seem to mind a bit, and now she would have you believe she is so delicate; she shams, it’s all put on.” But it is not put on at all: if you examine their heads you will find the animal sphere almost entirely absent.

Dr. R.M. Tuttle, speaking on this point, says:

“Some men can do with ease as much physical labour as would kill other men. The same is true of mental labour. A man like Gladstone can take on himself a course of work the mere attempting of which would effectually silence any one else. He is a man with a large, highly organized brain, but he possesses, besides, the well-balanced organs of animal life which are required to generate the energy that such brains can transmute into intellectual force. To be able to do the full measure of work of a man, it is necessary to be a good animal.”

The lady in question has the most exquisitely intellectual development, a wonderful arch of cerebrum, but no occipital power worth while.

Well, the patient had been through a domestic trial and had bent; some thought she had broken.

A good, kind, gentle allopathic physician, who was wont to attend the family, also attended her, and diagnosed Bright’s disease of the kidneys. Said she to her mother:

“I am truly sorry to have to tell you that Miss-has a disease of the kidneys that cannot be cured; you must take care of her; she must wear flannel all over, and avoid cold and damp; she may last with care a very long time, but you must not expect her to get well.”

Much family council was held together, and the outlook being dark and hopeless, the young lady was brought to me.

Homoeopathy cured her in about eight months, and the young lady thereupon got married, and has now several bouncing children, and she herself continues in good health.

Not a vestige of albumen has been in the urine for nearly five years. What cured her? Mercurius vivus. She took two doses a day for many months. I did not hit is right off, but tried two or three remedies at first without avail.

This is my twenty-sixth reason for being a homoeopath, and it alone were amply sufficient; and whether it be God’s will that I die to-night, or live for another fifty years, I feel that while I do live I am in duty bound to fight the good fight of Homoeopathy with all the power I possess: were I to do less I should be afraid to die.

Young man, the responsibility of not being a homoeopath is very terrible.

XXVII.

POST-ORBITAL NEURALGIA OF TWENTY YEARS STANDING

Must be my twenty-seventh reason for being a homoeopath. This case (which came under observation on January, 9th, 1882), is one of considerable interest on various accounts. Its subject, a lady of rank, over fifty years of age, had been in turns, and for many years under almost all the leading oculists of London for this neuralgia of the eyes-i.e. terrible pain at the back of the eyes, coming on in paroxysms, and confining her to her room for many days together; some attacks would last for six weeks. Some of the neuralgic pain, however, remained at all times. Her eyes had been examined by almost every notable oculist in London, and no one could find anything wrong with them structurally, so it was unanimously agreed and declared to be neuralgia of the fifth nerve. Of course no end of tonics, anodynes, and alterative had been used. The oculists sent her to the physicians, and these back again to the oculists. The late Dr. Quin and other leading homoeopaths had been tried, but no one had ever touched it”.

Latterly and for years, she had tried nothing; whenever an attack came on, she would remain in her darkened bedroom, with her head tied up, bewailing her fate. To me she exclaimed, “My existence is one life-long crucifixion!”

I should have stated that the neuralgia was preceded and accompanied by influenza. In the aggregate these attacks of influenza and post-orbital neuralgia confined her to her room nearly half the year. In appearance she was healthy, well- nourished, rather too much embonpoint, and fairly vigorous. A friend of hers had been benefited by homoeopathy in my hands, and she therefore came to me “in utter despair”.

These are the simple facts of the case, though they look very like piling up the agony! Now for the remedy. The resources of allopathy had been exhausted, and, moreover, I have no confidence in them anyway: Homoeopathy-and good Homoeopathy, too, for the men tried knew their work-had also failed. Do-nothing, now much in vogue, had fared no better. I reasoned thus : This lady tells me she has been vaccinated five or six times, and being, thus very much vaccinated, she may be just suffering from chronic vaccinosis, one chief symptom of which is a cephalalgia like hers, so I forthwith prescribed Thuja 30. It cured, and the cure had lasted till now. The neuralgia disappeared slowly; in about six weeks (February 14th, 1882) I wrote in my case-book, “The eyes are well!”

As I have not heard from the patient for some time, I am just writing a note to her to know whether the neuralgia has thus far (December 30th, 1882) returned. The reply I will add.

Of course, it does not follow that because Thuja cured this case of neuralgia of some twenty years’ standing that therefore the lady was suffering from vaccinosis; that Thuja DID cure it is incontrovertible, and my vaccinosis hypothesis led me to prescribe it. More cannot be maintained. At least, the case must stand as a clinical triumph for Thuja 30-this much is absolute.

In reply to my enquiry, I received the following : “January 1st, 1883.

… I have been in very much stronger health ever since I crossed your threshold, and excepting one or two attempts at a return from the enemy, I have been quite free from suffering…”

This lady continues well of her post-orbital neuralgia at the time of going to press. After the disappearance of the neuralgia she had several other remedies from me for dyspeptic symptoms.

XXVIII

Let this reason be a case of :-

CHRONIC HEADACHE OF NINE YEARS’ DURATION Miss G-, aet. 19, came under my care on March 12th, 1881, complaining of bad attacks of headache for the past nine years. She said it was as if the back of her head were in a vice, and then it would be frontal, and throbbing as if her head would burst. She was very pale, and her forehead looked shiny, and in places brown.

These “head attacks” occurred once or twice a week.

Tendency to constipation; menses regular; and old stye visible on left eyelid; poor appetite; dislikes flesh-meat; liver enlarged a little; had a series, of boils in the fall of 1880.

Feet cold; used to have chilblains. For years cannot ride on an omnibus or in a cab, because of getting pale and sick; skin becomes rough in the wind; lips crack; gets fainty at times.

To have Graphites 30.

April 13th-Appetite and spirits better, but otherwise no change. Questioned as to the duration of the head attacks, she tells me the last but one continued, for three weeks-the last, three days. Over the right eye there is a red, tender patch; has two or three white-headed pustules on her face.

Was vaccinated at three months, re-vaccinated at seven years, and again at fourteen. Had small-pox about ten years ago.

Thus here was a case that had had small pox ten years ago, or thereabouts, for she could not quite fix the date, and had been vaccinated three times besides, once subsequent to the small pox!

Rx Tc. Thuja occidentalis, 3iv. 3x.

To take five drops in water twice a day.

May 13th.-Much better; has only had one very slight headache lasting an hour or two; the frontal tender patch is no longer tender; no further faintness at all. Lips crack. The pustules on the face gone, and skin quite clear.

To have Thuja 12, one drop at bedtime.

June 17th.-Was taken ill yesterday fortnight with soreness of stomach; fever; nausea and perspiration. Subsequently spots broke out like pimples-eight on the face, one each on the thumb and wrist, one on the two on the back; they filled with matter, were out five days, became yellow, and then died away. Her mother says the symptoms were just the same as when patient had the small-pox. Her headaches were well just before this bout came on.

July 1st.-Continues well.

July 27th.-The headaches have not returned.

February 24th, 1882.-The cure holds good, for she has had no headache, and is otherwise well. She had subsequently some other remedies for the little tumour on her eyelid, and for a small exostosis on lower jaw, but she had received nothing but Thuja when the cephalalgia disappeared, and it was two or three weeks before the next medicine followed.

Some months after this date this young lady was brought by her mother merely to show me how well she was, and to take final leave of me; two years later I learned from her mother that she continued well, so the cure is permanent.

An interesting feature in this case is the curious attack which came on at the beginning of June. My reading of it is that it was really a proving of Thuja, or a general organismic reaction called forth by it; and this sent me often up to the thirtieth dilution in my subsequent use of Thuja, though I have occasionally found the third decimal dilution answer better than the thirtieth.

But this is not the point of my thesis, for this case was cured by the low dilution, and when the low dilutions cure, and cure promptly, even though not very agreeably, but well, it cannot be necessary to go up any higher, especially as one’s faith is sufficiently on the stretch without it.

XXIX

ENLARGED GLANDS. APEX-CATARRH

Master C.-aet, 11 1/2 came under my care on August 18th, 1818, complaining of a cough, worse at 7.30 p.m., he also coughed by day and through the night, but it did not wake him. He perspired fearfully, worst on the head, and worse during the night. Over upper half of left lung one heard moist cracking rales. The cervical lymphatic glands at the top of the apex of left lung were indurated, and distinctly “feelable”. He weighed 5 stone 4 lbs. The vaccination scars were on the left arm, and the glands over the apex of the right lung were not indurated. Induration of the lymphatics on the left side of the neck (the vaccinating being performed on that side) is the rule after vaccination, as anyone may observe for himself if he will take the trouble to examine a healthy child just before vaccination and any time thereafter. I say, any time thereafter, for the thing generally persists for a very long time, unless cured by medical art.

Rx. Thuja 30, m.ii., Sac. q.s. Fiat pulv. Tales xxiv. One, three times a day

August 27th.-Is well of cough, but the sweats continue. To take no medicine.

September 6th.-The most careful examination of chest reveals no rale; there is no cough; the sweats have quite ceased; the said cervical lymphatics can not be found. The boy now weighs 5 stone 8 lbs., so tat he has gained 4 lbs. in weight since he got the Thuja.

Discharged cured.

The boy had been at school, and was sent home to his parents by the school physician on account of his obstinate cough, and because his general symptoms excited alarm. To me it appeared to be the first stage of phthisis. That the boy should increase in weight at home just after returning from school is, of course, not necessarily due to the medicine; home life, too, would improve his nutrition generally, and would perhaps also account for the disappearance of the apex catarrh, cough, and perspirations. But what is to account for the disappearance of the induration of the cervical glands?

James Compton Burnett
James Compton Burnett was born on July 10, 1840 and died April 2, 1901. Dr. Burnett attended medical school in Vienna, Austria in 1865. Alfred Hawkes converted him to homeopathy in 1872 (in Glasgow). In 1876 he took his MD degree.
Burnett was one of the first to speak about vaccination triggering illness. This was discussed in his book, Vaccinosis, published in 1884. He introduced the remedy Bacillinum. He authored twenty books, including the much loved "Fifty Reason for Being a Homeopath." He was the editor of The Homoeopathic World.