Heavy Metals

of the bladder with frequent tormenting urge to urinate. Associated with the Hahnemannian symptom: “involuntary urination, preferably during the day” one comes to the use of iron preparations (for example ferrum phosphoricum) in irritative states of the neck of the bladder in anemic women, particularly during pregnancy, in whom small amounts of urine are voided involuntarily on walking, but not on sitting or lying. The use of ferrum picrinicum in prostatic hypertrophy is to be ascribed to the picric acid fraction.


Finally there is a trend of iron action which should not be neglected even though its comprehension in the total picture still offers great difficulties: the rheumatic, neuralgic. Here especially are the sticking and tearing pains in the shoulder girdle, apparently in ferrum aceticum more in the right, in ferrum metallicum more in the left. They impair the movements of the arm. They are often ascribed to insufficient clothing or deficient covers, and are relieved by external warmth. A similar tearing-sticking pain also goes from the hip joint into the leg,” the hip is painful as if bruised, on touching, the patient cannot come on account of the pain which prevents walking; it is worse in the evening after lying down, he must arise and move about in order to lessen the pain up to midnight”; thus the description of Hahnemann reads. Cramps in the calves appear, worse at rest and at night. The extremities can hardly be kept at rest and during rest there is the necessity of moving them. This symptom awakens an impression of local stasis in the large muscles, which may be considered less as of of arthritic origin than of defective distribution of the blood and depression of the circulation and the metabolic exchange in the muscle apparatus, thought it is assigned to the large joints.

The nocturnal aggravation can be indicative. For the neuralgia in the teeth, relieved by cold water, worse at night, one finds no suggestion in the provings, but they are frequently observed in the untoward actions of iron.

Empirically iron is recommended in the cachexia of quinine and malaria.

The drug picture of iron must hold in essentials, at least for the present, for ferrum metallicum as well as ferrum aceticum, since the available provings do not permit a separation. Moreover at present no separation can be made for the oxide of iron or ferrous carbonate. Practically the simplest agent, the potentized metal, will always be preferred unless there is a special indication for a definite compound.


As ferrum phosphoricum today one uses ferric phosphate, Fe (PO4). Whether ferrous phosphate, Fe (HPO4), was present in the proving of Morgan, it is difficult to say.


When Schussler included ferrum phosphor. In his therapy in 1874, he did not actually include it on the basis of provings with this substance but on the idea, based on nothing, that iron was present in the organism and particularly in the muscle tissues, in this compound as a building and functional agent. He took over that which was known in homoeopathy of the action of iron, for his remedy, naturally as always with him under extremely simple, unprovable theoretic conceptions. Many symptoms of iron seemed to signify hyperemia to him. Since there were dependent upon the tension of the vessels and ferrum phosphoricum was a constituent of the musculature, also of the vessel musculature, thus he explained this substance as the functional agent for tension of the vessel; in great doses it can relax the tension of the vessel and therefore create hyperemia, in small doses on the other hand the relaxed muscle fibres are returned to normal tension.


In spite of the untenable nature of this conception, the fact remains that ferrum phosphoricum more than the other iron preparations, has practically proven itself as a remedy for inflammation and fever. It has already been stressed that through iron not only “febrile states” but even fever may be produced in sensitive persons, moreover that Rademacher often used iron in the febrile diseases. In the proving with ferrum phosphoricum in the D 2, heat and dryness of the face and the palms of the hands, later of the neck and upper chest is noted. (Provings with ferrum iodatum have yielded febrile symptoms more distinctly). Schussler took ferrum phosphoricum into consideration in all the states which belong to belladonna in the homoeopathic domain. In the first stage of febrile diseases ferrum phosphoricum is used much more in homoeopathy on the basis of experience than on observations from the provings when the sensitive, anemic, easily exhausted ferrum type which tends to have congestion is present; when chilling or rheumatic causes are present. The nocturnal aggravation and the sensitivity to contact and alarm are general ferrum indications but do not differentiate from belladonna. The reported aggravation worse from movement, which stands in opposition to the other improvement through prolonged motion, concerns the rheumatic symptoms. The shoulder region is again the preferred site; the right side seems to be more markedly involved. But quite generally ferrum phosphoricum has frequently proven itself in acute as well as subacute febrile joint rheumatism. The improvement from cold applications refers to the congestive headache in any case not to the rheumatic pains, because in the provings it was expressly stated that these were improved by warm applications and covers. The fever following chilliness from respiratory passage involvement can increase up to the first stage of a pneumonia and here the tendency to bleeding is of value as an indication of ferrum: expectoration of almost pure blood. Moreover ferrum phosphoricum is particularly advocated in acute otitis in the first stage which it develops from a catarrh of the Eustachian tube, either as the first remedy or when belladonna fails.

Finally the already mentioned weakness of the sphincter vesicae in anemia with involuntary urination on walking is an indication, more of ferrum phosphoricum than for other iron preparations.


There is a special proving of ferro-iodide, FeI22. However, it is not frequently used, though it is best in those cases in which one desires an iodine action in a ferrum type, for example, in goiter. The proving with the pure substance and up to the 3rd trituration also has many iodine symptoms from the mucous membranes of the upper respiratory system, moreover irritative states of the urinary passages and the rectum; moreover there is the already mentioned fever (pulse increase and febrile sensation, without actual temperature measurements). In scrofulous and tuberculous affections with fever a combination of the two remedies so erethistic-consumptive as iron and iodine are, in any case, ought to be done with caution.


Ferrum muriaticum up to the present has not been subjected to a special proving. Today usually ferric chloride, Fe Cl3, is understood by it. It is indicated like ferrum aceticum in pains in the right shoulder. H. Schulz considers the chloride as especially suitable for bleeding and it has also been employed externally as a styptic.


Ferrum sulfuricum, FeSO4, has a purely empirical recommendation in Basedow’s disease with anemia as well as the other ferrum characteristics. The painless watery diarrhoea also seems to belong to these.


Ferrum arsenicosum, ferriarsenite, is not proven. It is used as an arsenic preparation in the same sense as chininum arsenicosum: in anemic, weak children without appetite, in splenic and liver enlargement, severe blood diseases, malarial cachexia, occasionally also in nephritis.


There is a brief proving with the D 6 potency but it is scarcely used. The recommendation in spermatorrhoea in weak anemic people with depression is purely clinical. The sole prover reported a feeling of numbness in the scalp, pressure and heaviness in the head and eyes, dryness in the nose and mouth, improved by the onset of sneezing, diarrhoea with bloody mucus and tenesmus and feeling of intestinal prolapse; more-over sticky mucoid, excoriating leucorrhoea and an unpleasant sensation of heaviness and sinking in the uterus. 597


Ferrum picrinicum is occasionally employed in states of exhaustion and difficulty in heating in which the picric acid fraction participates; more often in prostatic hypertrophy. The recommendation is purely clinical.

SUMMARY Constitution: ———— Oxygenoid: weak anemic persons with transparent skin in which widened veins appear, with congestions, but cold extremities, tendency to fever and bleeding, pseudo-plethora, tendency to tuberculosis and hyperesthesia (against noise), easily excitable and rapidly exhausted. Rapid growth.

Endocrine associations: Ovarian dysfunction (corpora lutea); thymus?

Chief Trends of Action:

1. Chlorosis and secondary anemia with irregular circulation, intermittent menstruation, or other irregularities of the menses (amenorrhoea but also too early and severe flow). Sterility, sensitivity of the os uteriexternum, anesthesia of the vagina.

Otto Leeser
Otto Leeser 1888 – 1964 MD, PHd was a German Jewish homeopath who had to leave Germany due to Nazi persecution during World War II, and he escaped to England via Holland.
Leeser, a Consultant Physician at the Stuttgart Homeopathic Hospital and a member of the German Central Society of Homeopathic Physicians, fled Germany in 1933 after being expelled by the German Medical Association. In England Otto Leeser joined the staff of the Royal London Homeopathic Hospital. He returned to Germany in the 1950s to run the Robert Bosch Homeopathic Hospital in Stuttgart, but died shortly after.
Otto Leeser wrote Textbook of Homeopathic Materia Medica, Leesers Lehrbuch der Homöopathie, Actionsand Medicinal use of Snake Venoms, Solanaceae, The Contribution of Homeopathy to the Development of Medicine, Homeopathy and chemotherapy, and many articles submitted to The British Homeopathic Journal,