ASARUM


Hahnemann’s proving symptoms of homeopathy remedy Asarum from Materia Medica Pura, which Samuel Hahnemann wrote between 1811 to 1821…


(From vol. iii, 2nd edit., 1825.)

(The spirituous tincture of the dry root of Asarum europaeum or the juice of the whole plant mixed with alcohol.)

Even when the ordinary physicicans have taken the trouble, which they but seldom did, to arsenicum by their own experiments the powers of simple medicinal substances, we can see how carelessly they went to workby such an example, among others, as the labours in this direction of COSTE and WILLEMET, who in their prize essay entitled Essais sur quelques plantes indigenes (Nancy, 1778.), pretend to gie uos among others a complete proving of Asarum. And what they discover from the trials they themselves made of it? Nothing of all the remarkable symptoms recorded below, except that when given in doses from twenty-eight to forty grains, it caused vomiting five or six times. But what was the peculiar character of this vomiting, or by what dangerous symptoms it was accompanied, of this they give us no hint. Further, that forty-eight grains given to a porter caused severe colic pains and violent vomiting and purging, which had to be allayed by a clyster of milk. And hence, as they imagine, this root must be regarded as identical in its action with ipecacaunha. And did it do nothing more than this? And is this all the curative action that can be expected from it? How carelessly must they have acted in such an important matter when they observed nothing more and discovered no more medicinal uses for it!

No! asarum is as little adapted for employment as an emeticin the place of ipecacaunha (which also causes many other changesin the health of human beings) as many other substances, which when taken in excess are also rejected from the system by forcible vomiting, such as arsenic, sulphate of zinc, acetate of copper, veratrum album & c. Do all these substances, which when taken in excess cause dangerous vomiting, merely exist in nature in order that we may use them as emetics? What short-sightedness, what dangerous superficiality! And my remarks do not apply only to COSTE and WILLEMET, but the same complaint may be made of all our ordinary (non) observers. Mutato nomine de te fabula narratur. They will see, and have seen, almost nothing from the administration of all medicinal substances but evacuations by the skin, kidneys, bowels, &c., for they have always sought to sweep out material morbid stuff that has seldom any existence, and have no idea of effecting cures in any other way.

If we take into consideration what these authors relate about their porter in an offhand manner, as if it were a mere nothing because he did not die on the spot, together with what may be read in the following observations, it would seem to be highly probable that this root, when given in such a large dose as that it shall excite that evacuation upwards of which the saburralists are so fond, is capcable of putting a human being in imminent danger of his life, and that consequently it may actually produce a fatal result, as was, indeed, seen by WEDEL. That would, indeed, be a splendid inestimable remedy which should remove the (imaginary) foulness of the stomach with no other disadvantage than – palpable danger to life! Preserve us from acting so barbarously towards our sick fellow-creatures!

No! the beneficient Preserver of life created this root for much nobler objects. To cure natural morbid vomiting accompanied by threatening symptoms like those of asarum with the smallest dose of the excessively diluted tincture of asarum, this is the first noble employment that we have to make of it- exactly the opposite of that murderous misuse of it in which it was recommended in large doses as an emetic.

What else it can do in the way of homoeopathic help may be seen from its other symptoms detailed below, which, to the thoughtful physician, require no elucidation, nor it is necessary to give any other indication of the diseases curable by it.

The homoeopathic practitioner who does exactly the opposite of that which the ordinary medical school has hitherto enjoined knows how to make a better use of this mighty gift of God: he never misuses it for the production of such involuntary beak-neck upsettings of the human organism; even our domestic animals should be spared those cruelties practised under the name of veterinary medicine.

No, The Creator wished that we might learn to overcome great diseases by means of powerful medicines having similar symptoms (homoeopathically) in doses of the smallest size, and therefore incapable of doing harm. He did not create them in large quantities in order that we should by giving them in large doses inflict injuryon the noble humanrace without affording relief, as is the case in the ordinary allopathic treatment. These substances are ordained by nature for very different ends nad purposes. All of which we do not yet know, and for which they have been produced in great quantities; nothing has been created for one single object; on the contrary, the purposes of their useful production are manifold. And if among these their utility as medicines is included, the large supply nature affords us of them cannot warrant us to misuse them in great doses for diseases. Thus for instance, arsenic has undoubtedly other important uses in the divine economy; for we can only employ a very small portion of the many hundred tons of it which the Saxon Erzgebirge alone can furnish for a useful medicinal purpose.

According to COSTE and WILLEMET vinegar is an antidote to asarum. Camphor is apparently efficacious in alleviating the injurious effects of its employment in unsuitable cases in large doses.

A quadrillionth of a grain (in the form of diluted solution) of the alcoholic tincture, and the quintillionth dilution of the freshly expressed juice mixed with an equal quantity of alcohol (in the dose of a drop or a small portion of a drop), appear to be the best doses for homoeopathic purposes.

[HAHNEMANN was assisted in the proving of this medicine by O. FRANZ, C. G. HORBBURG, L. RUCKERT, E. STAPF.]

The following old-school authorities are cited:

COSTE and WILLEMET, in Samml. br. Abh. f. pr. A., iv.

HELMONT. J. B. van, Pharmac, mod.

MURRAY, Appar. Medorrhinum, iii.

RAY, Hist. Univ. Plant., i.

WEDEL. G. W., Amoenit. Mat. Medorrhinum

The 1st edit had 268 symptoms; only 2 new symptoms appeared in the 2nd edit.]

ASARUM

Vertigo, as from slight intoxication, on rising from a seat and walking about (aft. 10m.). [Stf.]

He does not notice things about him. [Fz.]

Mental condition as if just falling asleep; a gradual vanishing of the thoughts. [Fz.]

Thoughts so overstrained that they vanish completely. [Fz.]

5. He is quite stupid in his head and has no inclination for anything.[L. Rkt.]

Incapacity for any work, and he can do nothing; his mental powers fail him (before each attack of vomiting, afterwards somewhat better); as a rule his reason is defective all throughout the medicinal disease. [L. Rkt.]

Sensation of vertigo, as if he could not stand very surely, in the evening (aft. 4 d.). [L. Rkt.]

Confusion, like stupidity of the whole head, with tension in the region of the ears. [L. Rkt.]

In the morning, on rising, izzy in the head, with headache in the left side of the forehead (aft. 22 h.). [Stf.]

10. When he wishes to wirk with his head and to reflect, the want of thinking power immediately returns and the drawing pressure in the forehead, so that he must immediately leave off. [L. Rkt.]

As often as he attempte to reflect a little, the head affections and the sick feeling increase perceptibly; he must quickly cease thinking, which would besides be in vain, as he is quite stupid. [L. Rkt.]

Aching, stupefying, dull headache in the forehead, as if he had been wakened too soon from sleep. [Stf.]

Dull headache. (aft. ½ h.) [Hbg.]

Headache, like confusion in the left temple, therafter under the parietal bones, lastly in the occiput. [Hbg.]

15. Confusion of the head, less observable when walking, more when sitting, and pressing in the eyes as with a blunt point from within outwards, especially in the eyes as with a blunt point from within outwards, especially under the right eyelid (af. ¼ h.). [Fz.]

Tensive painful confusion of the head. [Stf.]

The head is heavy and confused, at the same time pressure above the sagittal suture, as if he were intoxicated (aft. 3 h.). [Stf.]

The head becomes heavy, as if there were something that shook or swayedin it, which, after bending it forwards or backwards, lets its weight be felt. [Fz.]

Pressure in the brain, chiefly anteriorly 9aft. ¾ h.). [L. Rkt.]

20. Aching in the left side of the occiput extending towards the side of the head (aft. 3 m.) [Stf.]

Out-pressing pain on both sides of the head. [L. Rkt.]

Very acute headache in the left temple and behind the ears, like compression, which becomes worse when walking and shaking the head, but is alleviated by sitting(aft. 12 h.). [Stf.]

Pressure from without inwards over the greatest portion of the brain (aft. 2.3/4 h.). [L. Rkt.]

Pressure in the brain from above downwards as with a stone, on a spot of the forehead (aft. ¼ h.). [L. Rkt.]

25. Violent pressure downwards in the forehead upon the eyes, which then wate (aft.2.1/4 h.). [L. Rkt.]

Pressure combined with other sensations here and there in the brain. [L. Rkt.]

Sensation of pressure of alternating severity from above downwards in the forehead. [L. Rkt.]

Aching pain in the temples, especially the left. [Fz.]

Sharp aching headache above the root of the nose. [Fz.]

30. Tearing aching pain in the left temple. [Stf.]

Violent, drawing pressure in the brain under the forehead (increased every time he retches). [L. Rkt.]

Drawing headache, as if it would draw into the temple (at noon); it appears to be alleviated in the open air and by lying. [Stf.]

A (stupefying) drawing here and there in the brain, ear, and nape.[Stf.]

When he stooped and rises up again, for some seconds, lacerating pain in the forehead. [L. Rkt.]

35. Tearing, pulse-like throbbing pain in the forehead. [L. Rkt.]

In the morning on rising from bed, throbbing pain in the forehead (aft. 24 h.). [L. Rkt.]

By stooping forwards, throbbing headache is excited in the ofrehead. [L. Rkt.]

He feels the beat of the arteries in the occiput, afterwards throughout the body. [L. Rkt.]

Tension of the whole scalp so that he is (painfully) conscious of the hairs. [L. Rkt.]

40. Itching commencing with fine pricks under the left temple. [Fz.]

A cold sensation on a small spot of the left side of the head, a couple of inches above the ear. [Stf.]

Formication under the upper eye-lid, especially of the left eye. [Fz.]

The left upper eye-lid is somewhat swollen; the eye cannot bear much reading. [L. Rkt.]

Twitching of the lower lid of the right eye. [Fz.]

45. Sensation of twitching in the left upper eyelid from within outwards, by fits, but only when he holds the eyelid still; but when he elevates it in order to look at anything, it goes off immediately (aft. 9 h.). [L. Rkt.]

In the outer canthus of the right eye a feeling of cold as form a cold breath. [Stf.]

When he uses the eyes for reading, there occurs in each of them a feeling as if it was forced asunder. [L. Rkt.]

Pressure in the left eye. [Stf.]

Tearing pain in the interior of the right eye synchronous with the pulse (aft. 1.1/2 h.). [L. Rkt.]

50. Sensation of dryness and drawing in the eyes. [L. Rkt.]

Dry burning in the eyelids and inner canthi, especially in the left eye. [Stf.]

Painful dry feeling in the interior of the eye. [Stf.]

Warm feeling and slight pressure in the eyes; they have lost much of their brightness and look duller. [L. Rkt.]

Obscuration of the eyes (aft. ¼ h.). [Fz.]

55. The whole of the right outer ear is hot to the touch, frequently recurring during the whole medicinal disease. [L. Rkt.]

Sensation of warmth at the orifice of the right meatus auditoriousand feeling as if a thin skin were over it (aft.1/2 h.). [L. Rkt.]

Dull roaring in the left ear, like a distant wind; in the right clear singing. [Fz.]

In the ear, externally as well as internally, a pinching feeling, like earache. [Hbg.]

Aching behind and below the left ear. [Hbg.]

60. On bending the head towards the left, a pain, as if from overexertion a fasciculus of muscular fibres was out of its place, which spreads over the left temple and behind the ear towards the left shoulder, and in the unison with the pulse increases as that rises, and diminishes as it falls. [Stf.]

Continued pressive and tensive pain at thr orifice of the meatus auditorius. [L. Rkt.]

In the left ear a sensation observed outwardly and inwardly, as if the cartilages of the ear contracted. [Hbg.]

Diminished hearing of the left ear, as if were closed by the hand; it is as if the cartilages went closer together, or as if cotton-wool plugged the ears. [Fz.]

He feels as if a skin stretched over the right meatus auditorius (immediately). [L. Rkt.]

65. A sensation in the external meatus as if the orifice in front of the membrana tympani were pasted up. [Hbg.]

In front of both ears he feels as if they were stopped. [Fz.]

He hears worse with the right than with the left ear (aft. 1 h.). [L. Rkt.]

He feels as if a membraine were before the orifice of the meatus auditorius, with sensation as if it was compressed (aft. ¼ h.). [L. Rkt.]

It is as if a membrane were stretched over the right meatus auditorius, with a tensive pressure therein – almost continuously for seven days, but always worse during the chill. [L. Rkt.]

70. The feeling of tension and pressure on the right meatus auditorius scarcely ever remits, and when it does it extendsto the right lower jaw, and when it is severe a large quantity of apparently cold saliva flows from the right sie of the mouth (aft. ½ h.) [L. Rkt.].

Burning, shooting pain on the left cheek. [Fz.]

Feeling of warmth in the left cheek (aft. 4 h.). [Stf.]

Feeling of warmth in the cheeks (aft. 10 h.) [L. Rkt.].

On washing the face with cold water the vertigo, headache, burning on the tongue and in the mouth, contraction of the left cervical muscles and the weakness of the knees went off, but after drying the face they returned. [Stf.]

75. Fine shooting on the right cheek. [Fz.]

On the left cheek a contractive pain accompanied by gentle, but sharp blows, with drawing pain in the third molar tooth. [Fz.]

Produces in the nose (Snuffed up into the nose.) a discharge of bloody mucus [MURRAY, Appar. Medorrhinum iii, p. 519. (Statement) ]

Dryness of the inside of the lower lip. [Fz.]

A feeling of coldness, like a cold breath, in the upper incisors. [Stf.]

80. Sensation in the left row of teeth as if they were hollow. [Hbg.]

Cutting pain, with cramp, at the maxillary joint. [Fz.]

Much cool saliva collects in the mouth. [Stf.]

Frequent sensation of contraction in the interior of the mouth, causing flow of watery saliva. [L. Rkt.]

The saliva in the mouth seems to be quite viscid (aft. 24 h.). [L. Rkt.]

85. The saliva ejected was burning hot in the mouth (aft. ½ h.). [Stf.]

Tongue furred white (aft. 26 h.). [L. Rkt.]

A smarting sensation on the tongue and gums. [Stf.]

Sensation of burning transversely across the middle of the tongue, then burning and dryness in the whole of the mouth(aft. 28 m.). [Stf.]

Mucus in the mouth, with sweetish flat taste. [Fz.]

90. Taste in the mouth as if the stomach were deranged. [L. Rkt.]

Tobacco smoking is not relished. [L. Rkt.]

Tobacco when smoked tastes bitter. [Fz.]

Bread tastes bitter. [L. Rkt.]

The dry bread eaten tastes bitter (in the evening). [Fz.]

95. Dryness of the throat, with shooting. [Fz.]

Scraping in the throat. [Stf.]

In the throat such viscid mucus that he could not bring it up nor hawk it out, for eight days. [L. Rkt.]

Swallowing is difficult, as from swelling of the cervical glands. [L. Rkt.]

Hiccup (aft. 1.1/2 h.). [L. Rkt.- Hbg.]

100. Hunger in the morning. [Fz.]

Frequent eruption. [L. Rkt.- Hbg.]

Frequent empty eructation. [Stf.]

When walking in the open air a rising up as of air, out of the stomach, and when it came to the mouth he must yawn a couple of times, then for an hour empty eructation and copious discharge of flatus.[Stf.]

Incomplete eructation up to the upper part of the chest. [Fz.]

105. Shivering from nausea. [L. Rkt.]

Nausea (aft.1 h.). [Hbg.]

General discomfort annausea. [L. Rkt.]

Nausea and loathing with shuddering (immediately). [Fz.]

Constant nausea and sickness in the fauces. [L. Rkt.]

110. Nausea, with aching in the forehead, and great flow of water into the mouth. [L. Rkt.]

Empty retching, with flow of water into the mouth (aft.1/2, 1.1/2h.). [L. Rkt.]

The retching is always more violent the oftener it comes; the eyes become filled with water. [L. Rkt.]

When retching all the symptoms are increased, except the stupidity of the head, which decreases. [L. Rkt.]

Vomiting (an hour after the first retching), with great straining of the stomach, in five or six paroxysms, each time as if the head would burst in the region of the ears; only a little greenish, slightly sour, gastric juice is ejected (aft. 1.1/2h.). [L. Rkt.]

115. Vomiting, with great anxiet. [J. B. v. HELMONT, Pharmac. Mod.,§ 47. (General statement.) ]

Vomiting, diarrhoea – death. [G. W. WEDEL, Amoenit. Mat. Medorrhinum, p. 240. (Case of poisoning of a strong man.)

Vomiting with great effort and violent pressure in the stomach; the effort to vomit takes away his breath, so as almost to suffocate him, and yet nothing but sourish water is ejected (aft. 2.1/4 h.). [L. Rkt.]

Vomiting, with sensation of straining of the stomach and violent compression in the epigastrium, and a similar feeling in the head (aft. 2.1/4 h.) [L. Rkt.]

There always remains some nausea in the stomach, with disinclination to work, sensation of want of thinking power and laziness. [L. Rkt.]

120. (After the vomiting alleviation of the head symptoms.) [L. Rkt.]

Fulness in the stomach, with hunger. [Fz.]

Pinching in the stomach (aft. 1.1/2 h.). [Hbg.]

Slight pinching in the stomach or just over it. [Fz.]

In the stomach a pressure as with a blunt point. [Hbg.]

125. Troublesome pressure on the scrobiliculus cordis, which prevents him feeling whether he is hungry or not – all day. [L. Rkt.]

Hard pressure on the region of the stomach and scrobliculus cordis for two successive days. [L. Rkt.]

Pressure on the gastric region on inspiring. [L. Rkt.]

Feeling of constriction in the region of the diaphragm. [L. Rkt.]

From time to time sharp cutting round about in the epigastrium, which is always relieved by the discharge of some flatulence. [L. Rkt.]

130. Cutting in the epigastrium (aft. 2 h.). [L. Rkt.]

Horrible colic and vomiting. [COSTE and WILLEMET, in Samml. br. Abh. f. pr. A., iv, 2. (General statement.) ]

Fulness in the abdomen, and yet at the same time appetite and hunger. [Fz.]

Qualmishness in the abdomen, with repeated aching pain along the coronal suture (aft. 8 h.). [Stf.]

A painless and gentle working abou in the abdomen. [Stf.]

135. Explosion of flatulence in the abdomen which is not discharged. [Fz.]

Pressure in the abdomen. [L. Rkt.]

Feeling of aching and painful pressing on the left side of the abdomen, observed when moving. [L. Rkt.]

Single painful sensations in the left side of the abdomen, obliquely below the navel. [Stf.]

Before the stool cutting in the abdomen and sharp stitches in the rectum from above downwards (in the morning). [L. Rkt.]

140. He has hurried urging to stool (1.1/2 hour after the first stool) with cutting in the abdomen and rectum before and during the (looser) stool. [L. Rkt.]

Stool in hard small pieces. [L. Rkt.]

The usual morning stool was delayed for some hours, and then it was scanty, yellow like an egg (slimy) and of slender form. [Stf.]

Diarrhoea. [COSTE and WILLEMET, l. c.]

Diarrhoeic, viscid silmy, as it were resinous stool; ascarides pass in shaggy masses of mucus, for six day. [Stf.]

145. Stool whitish-grey and ash coloured, with bloody mucus on the top.

Pressure on the bladder, during and after urinating. [Fz.]

Constant urging to urinate. [Fz.]

(A drawing in the urethra.)

A wild, acute pain in the left groin, which darted quickly through the urethra into the glans penis, and there a smarting, contractive, violent internal pain remained for a long time. [Stf.]

150. Premature birth, explusion of the foetus. [RAY, Hist. univ. Plant., i.]

(Stuffed coryza; the left nostril is stopped up). [Stf.]

(Violent sneezing.)

A tickling runs through the nose (as from the positiv galvanic pole), which, after ineffectual urging, causes sneezing and a flow of clear fluid. [Stf.]

Sensation as if the breath and saliva were hot, but without dry feeling in the mouth. [L. Rkt.]

155. Repeated coughing on account of mucus in the chest, which first rises up into the throat and causes difficulty of breath, and at breath, and at length cough, with expectoration. [Fz.]

Inspiration causes an irritation in the throat, which excites cough. [L. Rkt.]

Samuel Hahnemann
Samuel Hahnemann