Calcarea carbonica

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

If you were about to produce a Calcarea carbonica subject to order you could do so by feeding him lime or lime water until the digestive organs were so debilitated that they could no longer digest lime; and then the tissues would be increasingly deprived of what they need, and give us the lime subject, the “bone salt inanition” case, for that is really what it is. Infants that are fed lime water in the milk will in a little while be lime subjects.

They will soon get in such a state that they cannot take the lime from their natural food, and the result will be a Calcarea subject such as we are about to describe.

But the natural cases are those that have a natural sickness, are born so, born with an inability to digest the lime that is in their natural food, and they grow fat and flabby, and produce deficient bones.

There is a greater proportion of cartilaginous material in the bones than lime, and the bones bend, and take on diseases and destructive troubles. Deficient teeth, or no teeth at all. The bones simply stop growing, and the patient goes into marasmus.

What a foolish notion it is to feed that infant lime water because he cannot digest lime! Is it not just as reasonable as anything else in allopathy? And yet our homeopaths use allopathic medicines. They use the lowest potencies they can get and it would seem strange if those substances cured any better in the hands of the homeopath than in the hands of the allopath.

Nor, it is astonishing that one single dose of the potency suitable to meet the state of disorder will make that infant commence to digest its food, and appropriate from its food the lime substance that it needs in its bones, and wherever else it needs it.

All at once the teeth begin to grow; the bones begin to grow, and the legs get stiff enough for him to begin to walk, and they will hold up. It is astonishing what changes will take place under the various medicines that are suitable for the disturbances of the hair, and the bones and nails.

The remedy must be sufficiently potentized to correspond with the wrong. It certainly must not be crude because the child is already stunted by the crude material. You will see within a month or six weeks after giving a solitary dose of the sufficiently potentized remedy the nails that were corrugated and uneven and spotted and irregular will form a margin and will grow out smooth.

You will see the ugly little crowns upon the teeth, distorted, and black things as they come up out of the gums; but when they have been under the suitable homeopathic remedy you will see them form a margin line, and from there on the teeth look healthy, and from there on the little body of the tooth is smooth and round; just as if that child bad had an impulse to grow better teeth.

That same thing probably takes place where the bones exist. The periosteum takes on healthy work.

This is the Calcarea state when the patient needs lime and he cannot get it because he has been cloyed; or, because he has an indigestion, he is unable to assimilate the lime that is in his food, and it goes through him and does not affect him.

So it is with much of the sickness we have, an inability to extract from the food and assimilate such things as the body needs. Would not anyone be a simpleton to suppose that he had been the cause of the building of a tooth?

You do not build mole hills out of our high potencies; they simply establish a state of order, so that digestion and assimilation go on, order is established and the tissues are improved.

Health comes, beauty, a growth of hair, better skin, better nails.

The Calcarea constitution is what we want to know. We do not need to know that the individual has been poisoned by lime; it is not worth much to know it, because that is not the index to the remedy. If indigestion of lime has been brought about by lime, it may need one of ten other remedies to overcome that indigestion for lime.

It is not always Calcarea that covers the symptoms. The medicine that covers the symptoms is the one that will change the economy from an abnormal to a normal state, and digestion will become orderly, and we will have growth and prosperity in the economy.

Aspect: The Calcarea case is to be known by the symptoms, and not by the fact that the patient has been poisoned by lime; the chances are that those we have to treat have never had any lime. Many of them have never been poisoned by lime but have been unable to assimilate lime from birth.

Calcarea is full of congestions, determination of blood to the head cold feet; hot head; congestion of the chest. Calcarea corresponds in a very high degree to the chlorotic and anaemic, pale and waxy, and in spite of this plump. It has both fat, flabby and pale patients and it has emaciated states, too.

Muscles emaciate. Emaciated about the neck; emaciated about the neck and from there downwards. Anemic conditions; pale, waxy, sickly; pale lips; pale ears; pale fingers; pale and yellowish.

Chlorosis is a word especially relating to the anemia of girls. A large number of remedies is indicated in those conditions, but Calcarea produces the kind of anemia known as chlorosis. It produces most pernicious anemia.

Great relaxation in the tissues everywhere; relaxation of muscles; relaxation of veins; relaxation of the walls of blood-vessels to such a great extent, especially in the lower limbs and anus, that there are marked hemorrhoidal manifestations or marked varicose veins in the legs. Distended veins, burning in these varicose veins. Burning and smarting. Bleeding and oozing. Inflammation and painful swelling of joints.

Glands: Another marked feature running through the remedy is its tendency to attack glands, the glands of the neck, all of the glands of the body, especially the lymphatic glands.

The lymphatic glands in the abdomen become hard, inflamed and sore, like great nodules, like hickory nuts; tubercular. Calcarea is useful in tubercular formations.

Calcareous degenerations, calcareous glands, induration of glands. It is useful in indurations in ulcers, and the base of ulcers, and round about ulcers, hence its wonderful use in palliating and restraining the growth of malignant ulcers, as malignant ulcers always have an indurated base.

Old cancerous ulcers are greatly restrained in their growth, that is, the constitutional state is much improved, the patient himself has more endurance and the ulcers will take on healing. In cancerous affections that would kill in sixteen months the patient will live five years with Calcarea, if Calcarea is indicated.

That is something, and in any times that is all that can be expected in a cancerous growth.

In glandular affections where the glands round about are infiltrated and hard, where there is much burning and stinging pain, where the growth has invaded and appropriated the surrounding tissues so that there are adhesions, matters are serious.

There is malignancy in almost all these cases. They differ entirely from glands that are loose from the skin, glands that roll under the skin, and have no fibrous attachment. Cancerous affections burn and sting. Calcarea cures many tumors, fatty, cystic, if the symptoms agree, so strongly is it related to this building tip process in glands. It builds up glands and bone.

Another thing running through the remedy is a pyoemic state, in which there are abscesses in deep muscles. Abscesses deep in the neck, deep in the thigh, in the abdomen.

You will be astonished to learn that Calcarea will take care of the abscess (when the symptoms agree), and it will not break. I have many times seen an abscess disappear when fluctuation was most positive. I have seen those abscesses disappear when pus was shown to he present by the needle; I have not only seen the abscesses go away, but also the pyoemic state which was prior to it. We have but a few medicines that will do that.

There is something singular about this. Why does Calcarea favor the resorption of that fluid and encourage the part to become calcareous?

It is more than I am able to explain, but it does it when the symptoms agree. But Sulph. and Silicea, when their symptoms agree hasten suppuration. But Calcarea has that peculiar action of concentrating and contracting.

One may be indicated in one case, the other may be indicated in the other. There are times when Silicea is indicated and the abscess is in such a dangerous place. Then if Silicea is given the result that naturally belongs to the spreading of that abscess is dangerous; in such an instance the surgeon must be called to drain the abscess in a safe manner, even when we know that if that abscess were located in a safe place, it would be far better for that patient to have the remedy he needs.

Sometimes the periosteum is injured by a hammer striking it through muscles, injuring or contusing the periosteum. Inflammation will set in, pus will form rapidly, and if Calcarea is indicated by the constitution of the patient the surgeon’s knife is entirely useless, and a most detrimental thing.

But in thinking from the old standpoint, the physician who knows nothing about Homoeopathy, and the wonders of our homeopathic remedies, would hold up his hands in horror.

“Why, if you produce a resorption of that pus into the system you will have blood poisoning and death.”

But under Calcarea this resorption does take place in some manner, and the patient improves every moment, he stops his sweating, his rigor has disappeared, he becomes perfectly comfortable, his appetite improves, he is stronger by the time it is over, and remains well.

Judging from the old standpoint, we cannot conclude anything about the problems that will come up under Homoeopathy. We can only judge from our standpoint, and from what we know.

And if you hear that somebody has tried this and tried that without success, remember that somebody has only demonstrated his own failure. Homoeopathy is capable of demonstrating itself in all intelligent hands; wherever the physician has intelligence and makes use of the law and applies the remedy in accordance with the symptoms he will see the case turn out as described.

Polypi: Another grand feature running through this remedy is its ability to grow polypi. Those who need Calcarea will grow polypi in the nose and ears, in the vagina, in the bladder, and here and there. Cystic growths also and strange little papillomata.

Exostoses: Another strange thing that it does is to cause exostoses. This state of disorder comes from the irregularity in the distribution of the lime. You would think that nature would try to distribute it around evenly where it can do the most good.

But when this bone salt inanition has commenced the lime may be piled up in one place, and almost absent in another. One bone will be cartilaginous and another will have bony growths on it. Softening of the bone.

Defective formation of bone. A keynote has grown out of this, viz:

“Late learning to walk,” because the legs are so weak.

It is not late learning to walk, but it is late walking.

It knows how to walk, but it can’t walk. Natrum mur. has brain trouble, in which the child is late learning to do things.

“Tardy development of bone tissues. Curvatures.”

Muscles flabby, joint affections, like hip-joint disease. It is full of rheumatism. Rheumatic and gouty conditions of the joints.

The Calcarea patient is a chilly patient. Sensitive to the cold air. Sensitive to the raw winds. Sensitive to the coming of a storm; sensitive to the coming of cold weather, and when the weather changes from warm to cold it seems impossible for him to keep warm; he wants the body kept warm.

Head: The head is sometimes congested; and it is hot to the touch; but it often feels cold to him. His scalp feels as if it were cold. But the body is nearly always cold to the touch and he feels cold, and he wants plenty of clothing.

The feet are cold. He sweats in various places, sweats in spots. Sweats upon the forehead, or upon the face, or upon the back of the neck, or the front of the chest, or his feet.

Sensitiveness to cold and weakness run through the remedy. Weakness in the legs. Inability to endure. Worse from every kind of exertion. Out of breath. Fat, flabby anemic subjects, sometimes they look plump, often flushed in the face, but they have no endurance, and if such a patient undertakes a little exertion he is down sick with a fever, or a headache.

Calcarea is full of complaints brought on from lifting, from exertion, from walking, from walking enough to get into a sweat; and these come very suddenly, because he cannot stop that perspiration by keeping still without getting sick.

If he gets into a sweat, and stops long enough to be comfortable, the perspiration will stop so suddenly that he will have a chill, or he will have a headache. Weak, tired, anxious.

Difficulties of breathing. Weak heart. Weak all over. No ability of the muscles to sustain prolonged effort, and it is the same way with the mind. No ability of the mind to sustain prolonged mental effort. Calcarea is a tired patient.

He is suffering from want of lime. He has been unable to digest lime, and he goes into a state with enlarged glands, emaciation of the neck and of the limbs, while the fat and the glands of the belly increase. Especially is this noticed in children. A big bellied child, with emaciated limbs and emaciated neck.

Enlarged glands. Pale, and flabby, and sickly. Those that take on flesh without any increase of strength. They take on flesh and grow flabby. Remain feeble. Those that get up from sickness take on flabby flesh, and in a little while they become dropsical.

The Calcarea patient can’t go upstairs; he is so tired in his legs, and so tired in the chest; he pants and suffocates from going upstairs. He has every evidence of muscular weakness and flabbiness. Nutrition is impaired everywhere.

This is the kind of patient that used to be called scrofulous; now we call the condition psora; and Calcarea is one of our deepest anti-psorics. It is a medicine that goes deep into the life, and takes a deep hold of every part of the economy.

Mind: Now we will take up the mental symptoms. All the mind symptoms represent Calcarea as in a state of great weakness; in ability to prolong mental operation.

Becomes very tired from mental work. Full of anxiety. He is tired mentally, and tired physically, from mental work and breaks down in a sweat, and becomes excited and irritable and disturbed. Great disturbance of the emotions; complaints lasting for days and weeks from excitement of the emotions; from worrying, from vexation, or a general emotional disturbance is prostrated.

“Inability to apply himself.”

Inability to do good thinking for some time after such excitement, disturbance or worry. It is very useful in complaints from prolonged worry, from prolonged application to business, from excitement.

It is full of a peculiar kind of mental feeling, differing quite considerably from most remedies; he feels his exhaustion of mind, and it seems to him that this weakness, and this inability to do and to think connectedly, must be going towards insanity, he broods over it, he is convinced that he is insane, or about to become insane, that he is getting weak-minded, and he looks it, too, because what he has in his mind is this: that he is becoming insane or weak-minded and he thinks people will observe it.

He thinks people look at him suspiciously, and he looks at them suspiciously, and he wonders why they do not say something to him about it.

He thinks he is going insane, and that other people are observing his state of mind, and he keeps that in his mind most of the time. He thinks of it day-times, and he gets greatly roused up over it; he thinks of it nights, and it keeps him awake.

He lies awake late at night thinking. Calcarea leads to little ideas, that is, it compels the mind to littleness, to little ideas, or to dwell on little things, but his mind, as it were, is forced to dwell upon things that he cannot put aside.

When the Calcarea patient begins to relate to his friends how he feels they all naturally say to him,

‘Why don’t you put that aside; that doesn’t amount to anything,”

but to him it is a big thing, and he cannot put it aside; all these little things combine to convince him that he is going crazy. he cannot calculate, he cannot do deep thinking, he cannot dwell upon deep things; he may have been a philosopher, and he has lost his ability to think out things in philosophy.

He has lost his mental depth. he forms conclusions out of his emotions rather than from his intelligence. He forms conclusions about things as he wants them to be. You would almost think he wants to grow crazy, he keeps talking about it so much.

He is unable to accept any sort of argument, and this grows worse and worse. He is unable to accept the assurance of his physician, in whom he has always had confidence. It is no use, it seems, to try to reason with him; yet he is not so far gone but he can reason about other things except his own mental state.

He imagines things; and the things he imagines you will really wonder at his dwelling upon them so, because they are such little things. And so it is when he goes into insanity, or imbecility, or a general breakdown.

It is a passive state, in which he sits and thinks about his little affairs, and his little things that amount to nothing at all, and he sits and sits, the text says,

“Sits and breaks sticks, or bends pins all day long with his fingers.”

Does little things, and in this way he keeps himself busy, wears himself out more and more. Any amount of thinking be comes impossible. It is almost impossible for him to come to a conclusion, for he never figures it twice alike.

He cannot add and subtract even in the simplest forms. Now, he thinks about this matter so much and thinks everybody else is watching him, until finally the instant he closes his eyes he has visions, just as soon as he gets down quiet and thinks

“Now I will go to sleep, I will get rid of all this,”

and he closes his eyes to sleep, then he must get them open as quick as possible, he is in a state of excitement, for he sees horrid little spooks; he cannot keep his mind clear.

He cannot go to sleep because his thoughts trouble him, and he sees all sorts of things. There is no congruity in his mind. We know that strong intelligence puts aside such follies, but these are just the things that Calcarea patients dwell upon.

Talking to himself. He lies in bed, or sits, when be is alone, and carries on a general conversation with every conceivable individual he has had to do with, on every conceivable subject; and it multiplies and it grows, and he imagines it is all real.

We see how far that is removed from the healthy mind, and yet he is not fit for the insane asylum, with all of these strange things, for when he is roused he does carry on a conversation, and he does as ordinary people do.

When he is alone, when he has nobody to talk with him, he does these strange things. He is controlled and dominated when he is in company, to a great extent, and hence these things are not brought out.

He carries out that same idea when he becomes delirious or insane. Picks his fingers, and does all sorts of peculiar little things. Sees visions and faces of persons when eyes are closed.

“Imagines some one is walking beside her.”

In the proving of Silicea that was observed very strongly. It has been observed in Petroleum, and in Calcarea. In a perfect state of health, with a strong, vigorous intelligence, it is not likely to be felt, but in nervous people, and especially in women, it is common.

“Mental aberration with horrid visions. Sees dogs crowding around him, fights them off.”

Here is a sensation, occurring in nervous women,

“Feels as if she would like to run up and down, and scream.”

Feels as if she could not help it, she must scream. That occurs in persons overwrought, dreadfully excited from a loss in the household by death. The mother loses her child, or husband; or a young girl loses her intended. She is broken-hearted, and greatly excited. It is a hysterical state. And yet I have seen the same in men.

I remember one. It came upon him from business cares. He had that same feeling; he would walk up and down the house, he said he felt as if he must fly or jump out of a window, or do some thing. That is analogous to the mental state found in hysteria, or a great state of nervous excitement.

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.