Respiration Ceases On Falling To Sleep (1898)

As a respiratory symptom, especially, it is most prominent under: Ammonium c., Antim tart., Bryonia, Grindelia, Hydrocy. ac., LACH., Mercurius r., Opium, Spongia, Sulphur….

This symptom occurs under the following remedies:

Ammonium c., Antim tart., Bad., Baptisia, Bryonia, Cad. s., Carbo animalis, Carbo v., Cenchris, Curare, Digitalis, Gelsemium, Graphites, GRIND., Hydrocy. ac., Kali iod., Lac caninum, LACH., Mere. r., Opium, Ranunculus bulbosus, Sambucus, Spongia, Sulph.

As a respiratory symptom, especially, it is most prominent under: Ammonium c., Antim tart., Bryonia, Grindelia, Hydrocy. ac., LACH., Mercurius r., Opium, Spongia, Sulphur
In throat affections: Lac caninum, LACH.
In laryngeal complaints: LACH., Spongia
With cardiac symptoms: Ammonium c., Digitalis, Gelsemium, Hydrocy. ac., Lachesis, Spongia
In typhoid states: Baptisia, Bryonia, Lachesis


Lachesis will, by the above arrangement, be seen to run through the entire list of remedies, and truly it is the most important among them. This does not, however, justify its universal application without differentiating it from the others according to the concomitant symptoms. It is useful when pneumonias threaten chronicity and resolution is slow or absent. This was one of Jahr’s favourites for such states, and merits close comparison with Sulphur, Hydrocyanic acid and Spongia in this connection.

In typhoid and all septic states Lachesis will never be excelled; many cases confirming this statement might be related. The well known aggravation from touch is found more frequently here than in other conditions calling for this remedy; the presence of sticky, pasty mucus in the mouth is a certain indication for it.

While on this subject I would like to call attention to this snake venom in the early stages of intussusception. We can all recognise the picture; patient, usually an infant, wakes from sleep, strains to pass a very small quantity of slimy mucus, perhaps vomits a little, generally bilious, not yet stercoraceous; advent of the disease has been sudden; no irregularity in the diet; has an indescribable facial expression which we never see in any other sickness. All this looks very suspicious, but you will say my diagnosis is not yet made; there has been no faecal vomit, no lump can be detected in the abdomen, etc. But those of us that have seen many such cases do not want to wait for that fatal fecal vomit, telling of complete strangulation and the surgeon’s knife. Now is the time to give the indicated remedy and all may be well. Boenninghausen’s Thuja may sometimes picture the symptoms, but Hering’s Lachesis will oftener do so, and cure the patient. In laryngeal diphtheria, Lachesis has recorded many triumphs. Here the stench is horrible and the surface blue, often cold.

Before leaving this remedy, I will give a brief resume of its action, for it is my firm belief that this is the rock upon which will be wrecked the allopathic opposition to Homeopathy. They cannot deny its efficacy; they cannot give it in crude form and first laud it to the skies, and then condemn it; and they have no drug which is capable of accomplishing one thousandth part of what it can do. Its principal indications may be summed up under the following heads:

I. A left-sided remedy, or left upper and right lower side; symptoms proceeding from left to right (Sabad., Rhus).
II. Universal aggravation from touch and light pressure (China).
III. Sleeps into an aggravation; is worse in the morning, and after sleep.
IV. Aggravation from non-appearing discharges (Nux vomica, zinc.) or eruptions (Cuprum).
V. Aggravation from empty swallowing or swallowing liquids.
VI. Aggravation from alcoholic drinks.
VII. Intolerance of heat, of warm drinks; worse when the weather gets warmer, hence in spring time (Gelsemium); also when descending into lower altitudes.
VIII. Effects of the climacteric.
IX. Affected parts look bluish; ulcers, erysipelas, etc.
X. Tongue trembles when protruded, catches on the teeth, or if the patient does get it out, she forgets to return the member.
XI. Much sticky mucus in the mouth and throat, its closest analogue with this symptom is Secale.


Has this symptom; the face is blue under this remedy also, but the blueness is most marked about the nose and lips; the pulse is very weak and accelerated; dry collapse (Camph.). It is well to remember that Lachesis and Ammonium carb. are inimical.


Has the blueness and coldness, audible rolling or gurgling of drinks down the oesophagus and lack of reaction in pulmonary complaints; pupils Mate when looking at you.


Competes very strongly with Lachesis in these cases. My experience has been that it is best to give it on the first hint of heavy breathing and somnolency; hot sweat is an additional indication (Sambucus). This is one of our grandest remedies in pneumonia, particularly in aged persons, who are also very apt to show contracted pupils.


Also, is frequently a sweaty patient, but above all, he has a rattling cough or respiration, the former aggravated by cold drinks; the tongue often has a smeary white coat.


Has cessation of breathing on falling to sleep as prominently as Lachesis, and rattling respiration more prominently than any other remedy. It is especially suitable to persons with a general catarrhal;tendency, often resting on a rheumatic basis (like Kali bi., Bryonia Viscum alb.). It gives results equal to Lachesis when this symptom is present during the climacteric, and is the most useful remedy in old standing cases of bronchitis.


Has served well, inciting to renewed action where this symptom [seemed to stand almost alone, at the climacteric or with deficient secretion of urine.


takes first place when laryngeal involvement is present. We all know usefulness in croup, although even here Lachesis is a strong competitor.


This symptom has not been confirmed by me under Bryonia, though it should not be forgotten, especially in typhoid.


To be compared in typhoid states, although it pictures apathy stead of the great erethism so characteristic of Lachesis.


Awakes suffocating from incarcerated wind, ameliorated by belching; loses breath on turning over in bed or when going to sleep. SHORT BREATHING WITH COLD HANDS AND FEET; wants TO BE FANNED; collapse.
This is one of the most precious remedies in the materia medica. It has long been my custom to give a dose of Carbo veg. in typhoid whenever the temperature is sub-normal, especially in the absence of any other indicative symptoms.


Waking from sleep, could not get his breath; very rapid whistling breathing; face and hands bluish and puffed; body hot, without thirst, sweating while awake which dries up on falling to sleep, is the distinguishing symptom. This remedy has a brilliant record in these cases and in acute nephritis, especially of the post scarlatinal type; it is to be compared with Spongia.


Is said to combine the thirst and restlessness of Arsenic, with the aggravation from motion and rising of Bryonia. This combination is not uncommon in vomiting of pregnancy and cancer of the stomach. During the past year a patient suffering from cancer of the stomach also developed the symptom, “Suffocation on falling to sleep” with the above mentioned aggravations. Cadmium sulph. prolonged her life and procured complete euthanasia. This powerful remedy needs an extended proving.


With a slow and irregular pulse, mainly in pulmonary, nephritic and cardiac diseases. Cracking sounds in the head is a very reliable indication.


The presence of this symptom in throat or menstrual disorders, should lead to a comparison with Lac caninum In the sexual sphere it is well to remember that it has many symptoms bringing it into close touch with Belladonna.


Compares in throat symptoms, although the saliva is thin, while under Lachesis it is sticky. It also has “soreness of the breast, waking the patient.”


Is indicated when cerebro-spinal symptoms predominate, especially in meningitis, where it should be closely differentiated from Ammonium carb.; and in post diphtheritic paralysis in a general way, Curare should be compared.


Has “Wakes up suddenly and must bounce out of bed on his feet; suffocation.” Suffocating, jerks waking every few minutes from sleep, in hydrothorax. It is to be compared with Opium.


Has this symptom, in all respects being like Lachesis, except the aggravation comes in the evening and from cold, being just the reverse.

C.M. Boger
Cyrus Maxwell Boger 5/ 13/ 1861 "“ 9/ 2/ 1935
Born in Western Pennsylvania, he graduated from the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy and subsequently Hahnemann Medical College of Philadelphia. He moved to Parkersburg, W. Va., in 1888, practicing there, but also consulting worldwide. He gave lectures at the Pulte Medical College in Cincinnati and taught philosophy, materia medica, and repertory at the American Foundation for Homoeopathy Postgraduate School. Boger brought BÅ“nninghausen's Characteristics and Repertory into the English Language in 1905. His publications include :
Boenninghausen's Characteristics and Repertory
Boenninghausen's Antipsorics
Boger's Diphtheria, (The Homoeopathic Therapeutics of)
A Synoptic Key of the Materia Medica, 1915
General Analysis with Card Index, 1931
Samarskite-A Proving
The Times Which Characterize the Appearance and Aggravation of the Symptoms and their Remedies