Benzoicum Acidum

James Tyler Kent describes the symptoms of the homeopathic medicine Benzoicum Acidum in great detail and compares it with other homeopathy remedies. …


Whenever we see in the nature of a remedy a well-defined state and condition of the human system pointed out by certain distinctive groups of symptoms we may know that there is such a diseased state in the human family.

They have not the power to create by themselves any diseased state except there is first such a state in the economy of the human race to be aroused.

They simply call up in a single individual something that the individual has, and that something belongs to the human race, and so whenever we see a diseased state in the remedy we know that it exists in correspondence to something in the human race.

Things are so adjusted that everything is for use. There may be conditions in the human race that we, as yet, know no remedy for.

We see certain groups of peculiar symptoms frequently repeat themselves and we know they are representatives of a state of the economy, but up to this day we may not have seen in the Materia

Medica their counterpart.

In medicines we have the exact counterpart the diseases of the human race.

Gouty constitution: Now this remedy has a state and condition that is sometimes called the gouty constitution, the uraemic or the lithaemic constitution, and, these cases are very difficult to manage, as the state is so persistent. It is one of the manifestations of Psora.

Urines: These patients suffer more or less from irregularity in the action of the kidneys; sometimes the urine is scanty and then they suffer from bodily complaints; again the urine is copious and then they are relieved of their complaints.

They are subject to rheumatic attacks and pains in the joints, showing the gouty constitution, and then they have relief when the urine is copious and heavily laden with deposits; but on comes an attack when they have more or less urine, but it is light in specific gravity, and then they are full of pains; in that way they fluctuate.

Now, the young prescriber will sometimes see the patient when he is passing large quantities of uric acid forming the red pepper deposits and he thinks he must stop that; his main idea is to check that one particular thing.

But the patient is a great deal better off while he has it. To cheek it is like suppressing a skin eruption, or restraining any other manifestation of disease.

It will be noticed, as one of the foremost things in this remedy’s manifestations, that it has strong smelling urine; the urine is pungent, and it sometimes becomes so strong that it smells like, Hippuricum acid, and so it is said urine smells strong like that of a horse.

The odor in this remedy approximates that of Hippuricum acid.

Complaints: The complaints then, of Benzoïc acid are such as are changeable, and we know why they are changeable; when the urine is copious and plenty of uric acid is being passed, and the urine is full of deposits, then the patient is at his best; when the urine is scanty or of light specific gravity he suffers from backache and pains in the joints, he suffers from atmospheric changes, is sensitive to cold drafts and to the air; but let the urine start up again, which it does in a sort of alternating way, light urine alternating with heavy urine, and the patient is comfortable again.

Then, there are complaints in which the urine smells strong and pungent; this often occurs in children. It is astonishing that these little ones manifest the uric acid diathesis in early life.

Children: Mothers often describe it as intensely urinous. It smells like intensified urine; it is not the smell, so much, of decomposed urine nor of foetid urine, but urine intensified.

It has cured many times wetting the bed involuntary urination in sleep, when the bed that has been wetted several times becomes uncleanable.

You can smell it almost as quick as you go into the room; the children all, smell like urine, strong urine; the house smells like urine. If two or three of these little fellows wet the bed at night, the urine is so strong it tells the story at once.

This medicine needs reproving; details have not been brought ou yet in nature is known. We have a good many medicines having this nature, but this is perhaps as intense as any.

This remedy does not. of course, fit all these patients, because it does not fit their special symptoms; but it has the nature or general state which, of course, precedes everything, and when it relates to all the particulars as well it does make wonderful changes.

Mind: There are a few mental symptoms.

“Inclined to dwell on unpleasant things; if he saw anyone deformed, it made him shudder.”

Alternation of profound sleep with prolonged periods of wakefulness. In the period of wakefulness, he dwells, during the night, upon all the unpleasant subjects that he can think of.

This state alternates with nights of stupid sleep for weeks, and this fluctuates, in accordance with the fluctuation of the state of urine.


“Anxiety while sweating.”

“Child cross.”

Head: There are many headaches; they are uraemic in character and come in many regions with many details.

“Fearful pain in occiput or cerebellum.”

“Rheumatic pains in head.”

That is well described, because these headaches of uraemic character take on a similarity to rheumatic pains.

“Pain and heat in region of organs of reverence and firmness.”

“Tearing pain in vertex.”

The headaches are very numerous; the remedy is full of dull, aching occipital headaches, coming on in the night from change of weather.

Pains located in the base of the brain after pains have existed for some time in the joints, and they are passing but little urine.

Every time he takes a little cold the urine becomes scanty and he is full of dull aches and pains in the head and especially in the occiput.

Smell: Perversion of smell.

“Sense of smell diminished.”

“Pain in nasal bones.”

Tongue: Another form of transformation scene takes place in this remedy, when all the gouty symptoms of the body cease and inflammation of the tongue comes on.

The pains in the joints cease suddenly from taking cold, from stormy weather and on comes a sudden swelling of the tongue.

Mercury also has this state.

“Extensive ulcerations of tongue, with deeply chapped or fungoid surfaces.”

Then, again peculiar kinds of sore throat take place from this same cause.

Sudden stoppage or slacking up of the quantity of urine; it becomes scanty, high colored, and pungent, smelling like that of a horse (Nitric acid) along with acute inflammation and swelling of the tonsils and throat inflammation of the tonsils with scanty, strong, pungent urine smelling like that of a horse.

Metastasis: Another feature that seems almost like metastasis.

Take an individual who is going around with more or less rheumatic aches in the joints; he takes cold and all this ceases, but the next day he comes down with inflammation of the tongue or sore throat, or inflammation of the stomach; so that he vomits every thing he eats.

The gout goes to different parts and in this instance it goes to the stomach; and then Benzoic acid, Antimonium, crud. or Sanguinaria is likely to be useful.

When it goes to the throat or is followed by swelling of the tongue Mercury and Benzoic acid should be thought of.

Whenever this gouty condition goes to the stomach, of course it must conform to those symptoms that are in the nature of this remedy.

In this remedy we have:

“loathing, sickness at Stomach,”

“nausea with gagging,”

“vomiting of a salty substance; bitter,”

When we think of Benzoic acid for the stomach symptoms, it is important that we have in mind its whole nature, how it brings about its complaints and what characterizes a Benzoic acid patient.

We would not be able to distinguish from the stomach symptoms alone we must carry with them the character of the remedy.

Stools: It has much disturbance of the liver, and many liver symptoms. As to the bowels, the stool, the rectum, anus and urinary organs, it is very rich in symptoms.

Its striking ones I will call your attention to, but remember its migrating, metastatic nature, its complaints going from one part to another, which will accompany these symptoms.

“Stools, copious, watery.”

This is true in summer diarrhoea that has come on suddenly, “excessively offensive,”

The white stool, like soap-suds, is so strong a symptom that the remedy does not fail to cure even when the gouty constitution is not present.

“Excessively offensive, scenting the whole house.”

“Putrid, bloody.”

“Watery, light-colored, very offensive stools (in children).”

So we get the idea that the stools are white and that the first passages are like soap-suds, but later the soap appearance subsides and leaves a white stool.

It is well, often, when a stool is passed that is of a light liquid, to bear in mind a few remedies that produce this state and ascertain whether it is like soapsuds or filled with bubbles of air.

“Diarrhea of children.”

The urinous odor of the body, and especially that peculiarly pungent, intense smell of the urine.

“Slightly elevated, wart-like, round surfaces around anus.”

The urinary symptoms are too numerous to read.

“Foetid urine.”‘

James Tyler Kent
James Tyler Kent (1849–1916) was an American physician. Prior to his involvement with homeopathy, Kent had practiced conventional medicine in St. Louis, Missouri. He discovered and "converted" to homeopathy as a result of his wife's recovery from a serious ailment using homeopathic methods.
In 1881, Kent accepted a position as professor of anatomy at the Homeopathic College of Missouri, an institution with which he remained affiliated until 1888. In 1890, Kent moved to Pennsylvania to take a position as Dean of Professors at the Post-Graduate Homeopathic Medical School of Philadelphia. In 1897 Kent published his magnum opus, Repertory of the Homœopathic Materia Medica. Kent moved to Chicago in 1903, where he taught at Hahnemann Medical College.