Typhoid Fever

Dr. Dewey discusses the homeopathy treatment of Typhoid Fever in his bestselling book Practical Homeopathic Therapeutics….

Baptisia. [Bapt]

      Perhaps no remedy presents a clearer picture of a typical case of typhoid fever than Baptisia, yet it is far from being indicated in every case. Its indication are pretty clearly marked, but it often needs careful distinguishing from other remedies; thus it has a drowsy, stupid state, like Arnica, and it has a black or brownish coated tongue, which is also found under Rhus. Like Arnica, too the patient falls asleep while answering question, and the bed feels too hard. It has to be especially distinguished from these two remedies. It suits poisoned blood conditions, and is applicable to any stage of the disease, unquestionably aborting the disease at times, and the typical symptoms are these: a dull, dark besotted countenance, as if intoxicated; this is very characteristic. The patient feels tired and bruised all over; again like Arnica, he is restless, and tosses about the bed to find a soft spot, but his restlessness is rather due to the mental than the physical condition. The eyes are heavy and stupid. Delirium is often present, and here we find a peculiar and very characteristic symptom, which is that the patient thinks he is scattered about and this makes him toss about the bed to collect the pieces; there is apt to be, also profound prostration; the tongue may have a brown streak down the center, the teeth are covered with sordes and the breath is foetid, and all exhalations and discharges from the patient are exceedingly offensive. The temperature is high, and so is the pulse, and there is tenderness in the ileo-caecal region. If the characteristic expression of countenance, the characteristic mental condition and the characteristic offensiveness of all discharges are taken into consideration, no mistakes can be made in the indications for Baptisia. A certainty of death and despair of cure is mentioned by Jahr as a prominent symptoms. It seems to have a tranquillizing action on the brain. Mellon has shown conclusively its value by its action on the blood.

Remember the trio:

1. Unusual foetidity.

2. Besotted expression.

3. Mental depression.

It is well to remember also that the best effects are not in variably had from the tincture but from the 6th upwards.

Rhus toxicodendron. [Rhus-t]

      Rhus in another remedy thoroughly suitable for the typhoid state. It comes in when a putrid decomposition of fluids takes place. It corresponds to any early stage as well. It has restlessness, brown tongue and muscular soreness, all of which are found under Baptisia, but the restlessness of Rhus is to relieve the muscular soreness. The characteristic triangular red tip to the tongue found under this remedy is not found under Baptisia, and if there be a degree to the offensiveness of the discharges it is less under Rhus than under Baptisia.

The mental symptoms of Rhus is this disease are a muttering delirium, and, perhaps, refusal to take the medicine for fear of being poisoned. The imagination is active, and the patients are disturbed its varied phases. There is often headache and nosebleed, which relieves the headache. There is diarrhoea of yellowish-brown stools of offensive odor, and like Hyoscyamus, may be involuntary. The abdomen is tympanitic and sensitive over the ileo-caecal region. There are pains in the back and limbs. It is especially indicated for backache that is severe., The spleen is also sensitive. There is apt to be, when Rhus is indicated, some pulmonary congestion. The characteristic are the restlessness, the red-tipped tongue, the offensive discharges the trembling of the chin and involuntary stools.

Croton tiglium is one of our best remedies for the complication of diarrhoea, with colic preceding stool, with discharge gushing and with much gas. We use the 6x.

Bryonia. [Bry]

      This is one of the great typhoid fever remedies, and is sooner or later, indicated in a majority of cases of the disease. The characteristic symptoms are these : great soreness over the body. Tired feeling. Every exertion fatigues. He has a dread of all motion. A splitting, agonizing frontal headache, worse from motion. The face gets red towards evening. There is a fullness of the head in the morning, which followed by nose bleed. The sleep is troubled, and the patient dreams of business. There may also be a delirium in which patient dreams of business. There may also be a delirium in which the patient imagines he is away from home, and consequently wants to go home. The patient drinks large quantities at long intervals. This thirst of Bryonia, when present is characteristic. The bowels are generally constipated; indeed some writers claim that Bryonia ceases to be of value when diarrhoea sets in; but soft, mushy stools may be present and yet not contra-indicate the remedy. The best place for the remedy is early, before the vitality is greatly lowered either by constipation or diarrhoea. Given here, it will soothe the gastric irritation, shown by the sensitiveness of the epigastric region, moisten the tongue and bringing the whole condition to a favorable turn. Jahr gave it as soon as heaviness of limbs was felt, headache, white coated tongue, loss of appetite, etc. Bryonia may be confounded in the stages of the disease with Belladonna, but the evidences of cerebral erethism are much violent under Belladonna. Rhus and Bryonia are so different that no comparison can be made. One point, however, should be remembered, Rhus has usually diarrhoea and Bryonia usually constipation.

W.A. Dewey
Dewey, Willis A. (Willis Alonzo), 1858-1938.
Professor of Materia Medica in the University of Michigan Homeopathic Medical College. Member of American Institute of Homeopathy. In addition to his editoral work he authored or collaborated on: Boericke and Dewey's Twelve Tissue Remedies, Essentials of Homeopathic Materia Medica, Essentials of Homeopathic Therapeutics and Practical Homeopathic Therapeutics.