Administration of medicines

In a peculiar kind of typhus fever, (Lesser Writings, p. 712.) Hahnemann advised the alternation of bryonia and rhus. In an epidemic of purpura miliaris (Ibid., p. 781) he counselled the alternation of aconite and coffea. …

Hahnemann at first allowed the alternations of medicines in certain cases- He afterwards altogether condemns it -Cases in which he continued to practises it. His intercurrent remedies- Hering advocates the alternation of long and short acting medicines-He denies the propriety of alternating cuprum and veratrum-He advises the alternation of a medicine and its antidote-Gross recommends alternation-Rummel approves of it- Hartmann speaks favourably of it-Aegidi advises it in many cases- Hirschel practises rapid alternation rapid alternation-Kampfer looks upon it as a make shift-He disapproves of it, but says it is necessary in some cases- Griesselich only allows it in cases where the choice between two medicines is impossible-Trinks disapproves of it, but says it is allowable in certain rare cases-Marey recommends it in certain cases-Beilby denounces it is pleurisy-Horner advises it in pleurisy-The practice is reprehensible in chronic diseases-The practice of prescribing a course of several medicines in succession is akin to it- Alternation allowable in diseases of fixed course, where we can predict the symptoms that will occur-Cases in which it is justifiable-Bechet’s proof of its necessity in some cases- Hahnemann’s successions of medicines-Reasons for Hahnemann’s intercurrent medicines-Is it ever necessary to mix medicines?- Hahnemann’s early denunciations of mixtures-Liedbeck proposes to give the chemical compound of two indicated medicines-His mistake about the proving of iron-He accuses Hering of plagiarism- Aegidi’s proposal to mix medicines-Schron disapproves entirely of the practice-Molin proposes to prove mixtures -Griesselich condemns it- Simultaneous exhibition of two medicines externally and internally- Roux, Panthin, and Gauwerky propose to mix different dilutions-The mixture of medicines not allowable-Is occasionally practised-Omnium gatherum-Auxiliaries to homoeopathic treatment-Hahnemann recommends antipathic, palliative, and chemical remedies in certain cases- His employment of electricity, pitch-plasters, mesmerism, cold water- Hydropathic measures in great favour with some homoeopathists- Starke’s homoeopathic theory of hydropathy-Kurtz, Brutzer, Hampe, Ott, Russell, on the water-cure-Bloodletting approved by some- Kretschmar, Hering, Muller, Rummel, Rau, Henderson, Charge, advise it occasionally-Arnold, Elwert, Schubert, Ruckert, condemn it- Dietl proves its hurtfulness in pneumonia-Are purgatives ever allowable?-Cases in which they are-Black on their use-Are derivatives ever required?-Thirst alleged use in suppressed exanthemata-Cases in which stimulants are required-Certain useful non-homoeopathic the auxiliaries-Hot sponge in croup-Kinesitics- Galvanism-Burq’s chains-Junod’s hemospastic apparatus-Dry cupping-Mesmerism-Reichenbach’s magnetic meridian-Schroth’s thirst cure-Many non-homoeopathic auxiliaries employed by all practitioners.


THE subjects that will occupy our attention this evening have given rise to much wordy warfare among the disciples of Hahnemann, attended by a good deal of unnecessary bitterness on the part of those who pretend to be the Elishas of homoeopathy- the sole inheritors of the prophetic mantle of our great Master.

In the first edition of the Organon Hahnemann has the following remarks on the subject of the administration of medicines in alteration:-

“It is only in some cases of ancient chronic diseases which are liable to no remarkable alterations, which have certain fixed and permanent fundamental symptoms, that two almost equally appropriate homoeopathic remedies may be successfully employed in alternation.” The reason he gives for this procedure is that the supply of thoroughly proved medicines is not yet sufficient to enable us to find among them one which shall exactly correspond to some cases. He regards this technical operation as a mere makeshift until better times-that is, until our Materia Medica shall be richer. In the later editions of the Organon (Fifth edition, Aphorism ). he sets his face against this practice, on the ground that the number of remedies we know the physiological actin of is no longer small, but suffices to meet every case, and also on this ground, that we cannot tell what alterations the first remedy will have effected in the morbid condition, so as to render the selection of an entirely different remedy imperative.

In some diseases, especially acute diseases of fixed character, however, he advised, from experience of its advantage, the alternation of two or more remedies.

R.E. Dudgeon
Robert Ellis Dudgeon 1820 – 1904 Licentiate of the Royal College of Surgeons in Edinburgh in 1839, Robert Ellis Dudgeon studied in Paris and Vienna before graduating as a doctor. Robert Ellis Dudgeon then became the editor of the British Journal of Homeopathy and he held this post for forty years.
Robert Ellis Dudgeon practiced at the London Homeopathic Hospital and specialised in Optics.
Robert Ellis Dudgeon wrote Pathogenetic Cyclopaedia 1839, Cure of Pannus by Innoculation, London and Edinburgh Journal of Medical Science 1844, Hahnemann’s Organon, 1849, Lectures on the Theory & Practice of Homeopathy, 1853, Homeopathic Treatment and Prevention of Asiatic Cholera 1847, Hahnemann’s Therapeutic Hints 1847, On Subaqueous Vision, Philosophical Magazine, 1871, The Influence of Homeopathy on General Medical Practice Since the Death of Hahnemann 1874, Repertory of the Homeopathic Materia Medica, 2 vols 1878-81, The Human Eye Its Optical Construction, 1878, Hahnemann’s Materia Medica Pura, 1880, The Sphygmograph, 1882, Materia Medica: Physiological and Applied 1884, Hahnemann the Founder of Scientific Therapeutics 1882, Hahnemann’s Organon 1893 5th Edition, Prolongation of Life 1900, Hahnemann’s Lesser Writing.