Kalium Carbonicum

Then it is that a constitutional and long-acting remedy like Kali carb. acts in fullness. It does not take the usual long time to act and is not attended with an aggravation.

“Abdominal muscles painful to touch; swelling of glands.”

In the abdomen, also following troubles in the bowels, or following peritonitis, we have effusion into the peritoneal sac, which is usually associated with dropsy of the extremities, but not always. In liver dropsies especially is that remedy useful.

Rectum: It has a great many complaints of the rectum and anus and of the stool.

It has most persistent and enormous hemorrhoidal tumors that burn, that are extremely sensitive to touch, that bleed copiously, that are extremely painful, making it impossible for him to sleep. He is compelled to lie upon the back and hold the nates apart, because the pressure is very painful to the external piles.

The piles cannot be put back; there is great distension and swelling inside. Haemorrhoids that come out after stool and bleed copiously and are very painful; they must be pushed back, and long after going to bed they burn like fire.

There is great aggravation from stool, which is hard and knotty and requires great straining to expel. Fistulae of the anus. Burning temporarily relieved by sitting in cold water.

It has chronic diarrhoea and also diarrhea alternating with constipation. Many times where there are numerous particulars, we have to rely upon the generals that are characteristic of the remedy. The text gives much less of diarrhea than has been developed by clinical uses.

“Diarrhoea painless, with rumbling in the abdomen and burning at stool, only by day; chronic cases with puffiness under the eyebrows.”

It gives few symptoms, but it is a large and extensive remedy in diarrheas that are chronic. In old, broken down subjects, in weakly, pallid subjects, with poor digestion, with great flatulence, with much distension, with disordered liver.

Kidneys, Bladder: Then the kidney, bladder and urethra come in for their share of trouble, which is of a catarrhal nature.

Discharges from the bladder, purulent discharges of a thick, tenacious, copious mucus deposited in the urine. In keeping with this there is much burning; burning in the urethra, during and after micturition.

“Urine flows slowly with soreness and burning.”

Kali carb. runs very close to Natr. mur. in many of its old, long-standing bladder troubles, In old cases of gleet and long-standing cases of urinary troubles that follow gonorrhea these two medicines are useful, both suitable in the scanty, white, gleety discharge that remains. In both the urination is painful.

In Nat. mur. the burning is after urination. Where there is scanty, gleety discharge and the burning is very marked and only after urination, and the patient is extremely nervous and fidgety, Natrum mur. will cure.

If the burning is during and after urination and you have the broken down constitution we have described then the remedy may be Kali carb. Some of these old cases are entirely painless, having no pain either during or after micturition.

Then you get an entirely different class of remedies. The old chronic discharges following a gonorrhoea are as troublesome for the young doctor as anything that will ever fall into his hands. The remedies are numerous, the symptoms are scanty, and many times the patient has not been long under the doctor’s care, therefore he does not know the patient’s constitutional state well and the patient can only tell him of the discharge.

“Nothing but the discharge, doctor.”

You cannot get his mind on his symptoms; he has forgotten that he wakes at 3 o’clock in the morning and cannot get to sleep until 5 o’clock, he has forgotten all the nervous manifestations. With the patient you have had under control, whose constitutional state you get before this condition comes, you ought not to have much difficulty.

One of the evidences that the Kali carb. patient is of a weakly constitution and is on the road to a break-down is that all of his symptoms are aroused and brought into action after coition, after sexual excitement. Now you will take notice in practice and remember it, that coition is a natural thing with man, when it is carried on in order, and when that which is natural is followed by prostration, and this has been so for a long time, there is a break in the constitution, there is something radically wrong.

Genitals: All the symptoms are likely to be worse after coition in Kali carb. He has weak vision, weakness of the senses, tremulousness, and is generally nervous; he is sleepless, and weak, and he shivers and trembles for a day or two after coition.

Similar symptoms are observed in the woman. In spite of the fact that the patient is weak, the sexual desire is excessive. It is not orderly. There is a sexual erethism, which is not under the command of the will, and in the male he is subject to copious and frequent pollutions, nightly dreams, sexual prostration. Young men who have abused themselves, or who have indulged excessively in sexual pleasure, go into marriage with weakened genitals, incapacitated; and then there comes a disgust, and it is not strange that there are so many divorces in the world. When the patient is young, some of this trouble can be overcome by living an orderly life and correct Homeopathy.

In Kali carb. there are many complaints affecting the male genital organs; uneasiness and sensitiveness of the testicles. One is in a state of swelling and hardness. Itching and smarting and annoying sensations in the scrotum and sensations that constantly remind the patient that he has genital organs. Constant irritation calling his attention to the genitals, brought on from abuse, from vice, from excesses. Phosphorus is a medicine that is abused in this sphere. Many physicians look upon it as one of the great remedies for the weakness of the genital organs.

In Phosphorus the genital indications are extreme excitement, too active erections, a disorderly strength of the genital organs. Beware of giving it in impotency or in weakness, as this is often associated with very feeble constitutions, and Phosphorus not only fails to cure, but seems to add to the weakness. It is a weakness that you will learn is a vital weakness. Phosphorus will set patients to running down more rapidly who are suffering from a vital weakness, who are always tired, simply weak, always prostrated and want to go to bed.

The female has a great friend in Kali carb. It is full of her complaints and has many symptoms likely to be found in a sick woman. It is useful in cases of uterine hemorrhages that have been incessant in pale, waxy, hemorrhagic women; incessant haemorrhage following an abortion.

She has been curetted and has had all sorts of treatment, but still that oozing keeps right on. At the menstrual period the flow is very copious and clotted, and then after prolonged menstruation of ten days or so, during which she has had a copious flow, she settles back into a state of oozing and flowing until next month and then it rouses, up into another ten days of copious menstruation. Kali carb. has cured a number of cases of fibroid tumor long before it was time for the critical period to cure.

You must remember that there is natural tendency for a fibroid to cease to grow at the climacteric period, and afterwards to shrivel and that this takes place without any treatment, but the appropriate remedies will cause that haemorrhage to cease, will cause that tumor to cease to grow and after a few days there will be a grand shrinkage, in its size.

Pregnancy: Kali carb. is often a remedy for vomiting in pregnancy, but find out when it is the remedy for vomiting of pregnancy we ha to go to the whole constitutional state.

Vomiting of pregnancy is not cured, although it may be temporarily relieved, by Ipeca, as this is a medicine that corresponds merely to the nausea its. In a large number of instances gagging and nausea are only a second or third grade symptom in the remedy that will cure. The condition really depends upon the constitutional state, and the remedy th is to cure must be a constitutional remedy. Sulphur, Sepia and Kali carb. are among the remedies commonly indicated.

Sometimes Arsen is needed. Of course, if a pregnant woman has simply disordered her stomach and has vomited bile a few times the remedy might be Ipeca. When a pregnant woman has no constitutional symptom at all, and upon examining the case you find nothing but the nausea, overwhelming deathly nausea, with continuous vomiting day an night, a single dose of Symphoricarpus rac. will help.

That is prescribing upon very limited information, and should only be done in circumscribed or one-sided cases. It is not a long acting remedy, it is not a constitutional remedy and acts very much like Ipecac.

At times you will go into the confinement room when the woman has pains in the back below the waist line. The pains in the uterus are very weak, they are not sufficiently expulsive to make progress in the labor, the kind of pain that makes the woman utter the cry,

“My back, my back!”

The pains extend down the buttocks and legs. Pain in the back as if the back would break. Under good prescribing these pains are changed into contractions, which prove sufficient to expel the contents of the uterus.

When you hear such things you will look back over the history of the case. You will look back for weeks as th woman has been drawing near the end of gestation and see that the vague things, the chilliness and other features in her constitutional state for which you have been trying to find a remedy now culminate at the time of her confinement into a class of pain. Had you seen that six weeks before and given her Kali carb. you would have prevented the severe labor.

It is a severe labor, a prolonged labor; the uterus appears to be weak, and the pains are feeble they are all in the back, and do not go to the centre of operation as they should. Now, this same kind of a pain may deceive you in taking another form. The pains begin in the back, and appear to go to the uterus and then run up the back, which would turn you aside entirely from the Kali carb. pain into a pain that would indicate Gelsemium.

Sometimes these pains are so severe that they actually seem to prevent rather than encourage the contractions of the uterus; when the contractions of the uterus cease, and the woman screams out and wants her hips rubbed, and screams out with pain in each side of the abdomen rather than in the centre, pains in the region where the broad ligaments ought to be, Actea racemosa will make the pains regular.

Pulsatilla is the medicine for absence of marked contraction, in cases inclined to do nothing; in a case that is inactive when the os is sufficiently dilated and the parts relaxed, and the prediction is an easy and simple labor, but the patient does not do anything. It is a state of mildness or inactivity. Pulsatilla will very often cause in five minutes a very strong contraction of the uterus, sometimes almost, in a painless way.

“The back aches so badly while she is walking that she feels as if she could lie down on the street,” etc..

The pain seems to take the force and vigor all out of the patient. After delivery there is a tendency to prolong the flooding, rousing up at every menstrual period, as described.

Heart: Weakness of the heart, cardiac dyspnea; the breath is short and the patient cannot walk or must move very slowly.

It is the coming on of a fatty heart.

With the suffocation and dyspnoea the breathing is so short that the patient cannot stop to take a drink or eat; the breathing is rapid, not deep, but weak. Dyspnea with violent, irregular palpitation of the heart, throbbing that shakes the whole frame, pulsation that can be felt to the ends of the fingers and toes.

Violent pulsations; patient cannot lie on the left side; accompanied by stitching pain through the chest, and cough. In old asthmatic patients with weak pulse, with the same pulsations and palpitation and cannot lie down.

The only position it seems that be can find any comfort in is leaning forward, with his elbows resting upon a chair. The attack is violent and continuous, especially worse from 3 to 5 A.M., and worse from lying in bed. He is aroused at 3 o’clock in the morning with these asthmatic attacks. Asthmatic dyspnea, when the state is that of humid asthma or filling up of the chest with mucus, course rattling in the chest, loud rattling breathing.

In patients who always have rattling in the chest, rattling cough, stuffy breathing; with every rainy spell or misty spell, or in cold, foggy weather, the condition becomes that of a humid asthma; asthmatic breathing, with much weakness in the chest, worse from 3 to 5 in the morning. The patient is pale, sickly and anemic, and complains of stitching pains in the chest.

The cough: of this medicine is one of the most violent coughs of all the medicines in the Materia Medica. The whole frame is racked. The cough is incessant, attended with gagging and vomiting, comes on at 3 o’clock in the morning, a dry, hacking, hard, racking cough.

“Suffocative cough and choking cough at 5 A.M.

Great dryness in the throat between 2 and 3 A.M.”

Think of Kali carb. when, after troubles like measles, a catarrhal state is left behind, due to lack of reaction, the psoric sequelae. The cough following measles is very often a Kali carb. cough. Kali carb. Sulphur, Carbo veg. and Drosera are perhaps more frequently indicated than other medicines in such coughs as follow measles of pneumonia.

The expectoration is copious, very offensive, tenacious, lumpy, blood-streaked or like pus, thick yellow or yellowish-green. Very often it has a pungent, cheesy taste, strong taste, as of old cheese. Catarrh of the chest. Dry cough day and night, with vomiting of food and some phlegm, worse after eating and drinking and in the evening.

Pains: Nothing is more striking in Kali carb. than the wandering stitching, pains through the chest, and the coldness of the chest.

The great dyspnoea, the transient stitches, the pleural stitches are important features of this remedy. A great number of the cases in which Kali carb. is suitable are those where the trouble has spread from catarrhal origin and from the lower portion of the lungs upwards. It is not so commonly indicated in those cases where the dullness has begun at the apex of either or both lungs.

It will very often ward off future sickness where the family history is tuberculous. Do not be afraid to give the antipsoric remedies when there is a history of tuberculosis in the family, but be careful when the patient is so far advanced with tuberculosis that there are cavities in the lung, or latent tubercles, or encysted caseous tubercles.

Your antipsorics might rouse him into a dangerous condition. Do not suppose, however, that it is dangerous to give Sulphur because one’s father and mother have died of phthisis. Sulphur might be just the remedy to prevent the child from following the father and mother.

Kali carb. is often suitable, and will act as ail acute remedy in the advanced stages of phthisis in cases in which it was not indicated primarily as a constitutional remedy. In such instances it will act as a palliative in phthisis, whereas if it were indicated primarily as a constitutional remedy it would do damage in the last weeks.

The fortunate thing is that a great many homeopaths are not able to find the homoeopathic remedy. If the patient has yet lung space enough to be cured, Kali carb. will do wonders where the symptoms agree.

Gout: I want to warn you in one respect concerning Kali carb. It is a very dangerous medicine in gout. When you get an old gouty subject who has big toe joints and finger joints, and they are sore and inflamed every now and then, you might think that Kali carb. covers the case very suitably; he is disturbed in just such weather, he is pallid and sickly, his complaints come on at 2 to 3 o’clock in the morning, he has the shooting pains.

But these gouty patients are often incurable, and, if so, to undertake to cure them, would be a dreadful calamity, because the aggravations would last so long. If you give Kali carb. to one of these incurable patients in very high potency it will make your patient worse, and the aggravation will be serious and prolonged, but the 30 th may be of great service. Kali iod., when it is indicated in the gouty state, acts as a soothing and palliative remedy.

But Kali carb. seems to be a dreadful medicine to handle, it is a sharp and a two-edged sword. Do not undertake to give medicine with a view to curing these old cases of gout when the nodosities are numerous. Do not give that constitutional medicine that should have been administered to these patients twenty years ago, because there is not reaction enough in the life of the patient to turn him into order, and he will be destroyed. It seems paradoxical to say it, but to cure him is to kill him.

The vital action that is necessary to restore him to health would practically tear his framework to pieces. You need not believe these things, you are not obliged to. But think about them, and some day after practicing awhile and making numerous mistakes in attempting to cure incurables you will admit the awful power of homeopathic medicines.

They are simply dreadful. In old gouty cases, in old cases of Bright’s disease, in advanced cases of phthisis where there are many tubercles, beware of Kali carb. given too high.

While studying the text book, look over the sensations. They are very numerous. Of course, those most striking are the stitching, and tearing pains, shooting, sticking and wandering pains.

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.