And the result? For the first time in his life his bowels acted normally, his hearing greatly improved, and, unless both he and I were and are mistaken, his head altered in shape quite perceptibly. So it seemed to us, but this seeming change in shape may have been due to his changed expression from a kind of sour glumness to one of smiling brightness. I may add that the patient knows nothing of my theories or of what remedies he had.

A year has since passed and the great change wrought in him still holds good–this I know because he had his daughter under my care.


Consumptiveness may show itself not merely in the lungs, in the glands, but also in the brain; we have cited enough examples of all these manifestations of the tubercular diathesis. But it shows itself, perhaps almost as frequently, in the pelvic region; as disturbances of the menstrual or sexual functions: in young men as more or less furious incoercible nocturnal emissions, masturbations, or excesses in venery, that if not cured run the sufferer to ground. The excessive fecundity of the tuberculously disposed needs no dwelling upon.

The girls develop very quickly and ripen perhaps unduly in the bust. Such a case came under my care very early in the year 1889. She had profuse and too frequent periods for long though she was then but twenty years of age. In bust, large; in colour, white, waxen almost amyloid. Her breathing very distressing and debility profound. Her father has spinal curvature, and a little brother has died of tubercular meningitis.

I regarded the dyspnoea as from the anaemia; the anaemia as from the excessive monthly losses and want of appetite, and the menorrhagia as from a consumptive state of the pelvic organs. Two months of Bacillinum C. cured the pelvic consumptiveness, the period becoming natural, whereupon the anaemia and dyspnoea began to mend in equal pace; the remaining painfulness of the menstruation disappeared under Thuja 30, and patient was well. With some difficulty I got her to take Hydrastis Canadensis 0, five drops in water night and morning, for a month, and the subsequent two years of capital health testify to the soundness of the curative work then done.

I have before pointed out my fondness for Hydrastis in small material doses as an after-cure to the bacillinic treatment. Here I gave it for a month, but at times I give it for two, and I some times use it intercurrently between two courses of Bacillinum with much advantage, not that it has any relationship to tuberculosis as such, but it increases the appetite, and patients under its influence put on flesh of good quality.


A gentleman of sixty years of age consulted me on October 13, 1888, for a cough, consolidation of left lung and albuminuria; the vocal resonance of the left lung is very pronounced; pains in the back, dreadful perspirations. There was a curious point as to the colour of the hair on his hirsute body: that on the chest exactly down to the diaphragm is white; below the diaphragm his body-hair is black.

Bacillinum 30 soon cleared up his lung, but patient refused to go on under my care; said he : “The medicine is awful; I was seized in the stomach with pain accompanied by diarrhoea and perspirations; it loosened all my teeth, made my gums sore, set up dreadful vomiting,” but the left lung seems well.

But I am not sure he rightly ascribed all this to the remedy, and the less so as he had been salivated with mercury long before. I only cite this case to show the violent action of the remedy even in the thirtieth dilution, and because it rapidly cleared up the left lung, the cough becoming much more active. One of his daughters died of consumption of the bowels, so he informed me.


In the early summer of this year, 1891, a lady and her asthmatic husband brought their eight year-old boy to me to be treated for chronic diarrhoea of four months’ standing, pretty extreme emaciation, a dark mahogany-like discoloration of the skin (all over, not in patches), feelable induration of glands in both sides of the neck and even more so in the groins. “He is nothing but skin and bones, and won’t eat anything, and the doctor has been treating him for worms but he gets no better.” Hereupon the mother burst into tears and was not to be pacified for several days, she seemed to feel he would die. “His grandparents are sure he will die.” Indeed I at first gave a bad prognosis and was only induced to modify it by the mother’s distress.

James Compton Burnett
James Compton Burnett was born on July 10, 1840 and died April 2, 1901. Dr. Burnett attended medical school in Vienna, Austria in 1865. Alfred Hawkes converted him to homeopathy in 1872 (in Glasgow). In 1876 he took his MD degree.
Burnett was one of the first to speak about vaccination triggering illness. This was discussed in his book, Vaccinosis, published in 1884. He introduced the remedy Bacillinum. He authored twenty books, including the much loved "Fifty Reason for Being a Homeopath." He was the editor of The Homoeopathic World.