The Carbon

One can hardly study the merit of the homoeopathic method of investigating the medicinal powers of material and the usefulness created by opening up the substance, in a better way than by this very common material, whose great healing actions after the correct application have been confirmed and can be again confirmed easily by experience.


Slow, persistent action.

Chief Trends:

1. Mesenchymal defense system (fixed and movable cells).

Stimulation of leucocytosis, demarcating inflammation and fibroplastic activity.

Purulent processes with defective tendency to scarring. Fistula of all types; also tuberculous.

Thin, acrid offensive secretions. Ulcers with hard sensitive borders. Chronic suppuration also of mucous membranes (for example, tonsillar, abscess, pyelitis, cervical erosions, purulent bronchial and lung affections).

Also pulmonary tuberculosis in not very advanced stages. Chronic glandular swellings (also of bronchial and mesenteric glands). Scrofulous skin and mucous membrane manifestations. Marantic children, emaciated with swollen abdomen; also after rickets; head sweating.

Acne, furunculosis.

Intertriginous, offensive sweats; desquamation and pustules between fingers and toes.

Foot sweat and chronic maladies after suppressed foot sweat.

Disturbances of hair and nail growth.

Painful indurated formations (on the soles), keloids; also internal scars.

Fibroma, lipoma, enchondroma, ganglion; hydrocele.

Scirrhus, sarcoma.


2. Metabolic disturbances in the assimilative phase with its results.

Inactivity of stomach and intestine. Aversion especially for cooked foods and fish.

Constipation with weakness of expulsion (stool returns to rectum) Deficiency in body warmth and vitality.

Headache better from warmth. Asthenopia; vertigo on looking back, from bending over; epilepsy, nocturnal attacks.

Bodily and mental exhaustion.

Irritable, depressed, anxious, frightened, irritable restlessness.


Lymphatic scrofulous children with nutritional disturbances and chronic infections (chilly, thin, pale, swollen abdomen). Adults: results of failure of skin and glandular functions; chilly defective vitality; “psoric” reciprocal relation between suppressed skin functions (foot sweats, fistula) and chronic internal maladie (lithemic, carbo-nitrogenous fraction, retention processes less expressed).

Modalities and Leading Symptoms:

Better from warmth (also the headache).

Worse from wind, cold.

Worse at night (deep inflammatory processes, sweats).

Worse new moon (epilepsy).

Worse from bodily and mental effort.

Offensive secretions from ulcers and offensive sweats.

Result of suppressed foot sweat or occlusion of fistula.

Sensitive to contact and sudden noises.

Constipation with failure of extrusion of stool.


The 6,12,15,30 D. potencies have proven themselves adaptable to the chronicity of the process and the local or constitutional conditions. One may see striking results many times from the 30th potency given at infrequent intervals.

With silicea are included two naturally appearing silicate stones which have not been proven upon the healthy but have been used empirically.

Lapis Albus is essentially calcium silico-fluoricum. The preparation arises from the region of the Gasteiner springs. It was introduced by v. Grauvogl because he associated the spring water and the stones from which it arises with the endemic goiter and cretinism. Actually Lapis albus has proven useful in hard goiters in the middle and high potencies. Here one will recall the same use of calcium fluoricum. Otherwise the clinical indications of lapis albus are the same as for silicea, particularly bone caries and glandular swellings. In myoma and uterine carcinoma as well as epithelioma and other scirrhous tumors will lapis be preferred to pure silicic acid many times.

Heckla lava, the lava of the Icelandic volcano is a silicate of calcium, magnesium, and aluminium and contains at the same time iron oxide. This preparation was introduced by Wilkinson 504 because he observed massive exostosis of the jaw in sheep grazing in the region of Mt. Heckla and also a failure of milk in animals grazing in this region. Heckla lava has been given with good results in diverse bone diseases, and has also been employed in sarcoma, moreover in glandular swellings such as silicea.


How far the carbon preparations should be discussed under the mineral drugs is more a question of convenience than of factual justification. Even the chemical limits between inorganic and organic compounds are subjected to a certain amount of arbitrariness. However we shall consider also undoubted compounds of “organic” chemistry under the mineral drugs because the “minerals” here are substances contrasted to those obtained from plants and animals. But even the substances which arise from them, can be suitably discussed with the mineral substances when they have little or none of the properties of the plant or animal charcoal, petroleum, salicylic acid. The selection amongst the almost innumerable number of carbon preparations must be made dependent upon their significance as drugs or knowledge of their medicinal powers. After considering the individual substances in detail, a review will be made as to the selection of the agent and its suitability and medicinal value from natural associations.


Graphites, as it appears in nature is almost pure carbon. The purest type which Hahnemann employed was the English graphite which contains 96 Percent carbon and 4 Percent iron. Other types are impure from various admixtures, amongst others at times arsenic. One must exclude such admixtures, particularly in future provings, because it is not improbable that these contaminations are responsible for many symptoms of the graphites picture.

Hahnemann reports 505 that the stimulation to the medicinal use of graphites was given by Dr.Weinhold who, while on a journey in Italy, saw workers in a mirror factory in Venice employ graphites externally for expulsion of herpes. Weinhold described his own personal results in 1812 in a paper: “Der Graphit als Heilmittel gegen die Flechten.”


Graphites is the hexagonal crystalline modification of carbon. The carbon atom stands at the corner of regular hexagon which is arranged in a triangular plane. The distances of these triangular planes planes from one another is greater than a side of the hexagon so that each carbon atom is equally removed from the three others lying in the same plane and one is further removed from the others lying in the plane above and below. (This arrangement is known from the so-called space lattice of graphite through v.Laue’s x-ray analysis of crystals.)

This crystalline form is very stabile and can be brought into action only with difficulty; chemically it is quite inert. Graphite is the stabile modification in which C is set free from the carbon compounds by strong heat. The fine structure in the plane with greater intervening spaces than exist between the carbon atoms of one plane is reflected itself in leaf-like crystalline form of graphites as it appears in nature. By trituration the metallic grey leaflets subdivide into ever finer scales.

In contrast to so-called amorphous carbon (carbo vegetabilis and animalis), which apart from impurities, is characterized by greater subdivision and irregular superimposition of minute crystals, graphites is characterized by an even surface one valence is free to each carbon atom (three are fixed in the same plane, the fourth is free because the next plane is too remote). According to the theory of Haber and Langmuir it is the unsaturated valence of the surface which conditions the physical compound (that is, absorption of molecules from a limited gas space or dissolved substance). This loose combination obviously contains the best conditions for exchange reactions by absorption; the inner connection of the atom of the absorbing substance will thereby not be touched at all so that it can act unlimitedly as a catalysor. The type of surface primarily differentiates the various modifications of carbon and this certainly has its share in the difference of actions on the organism. Wood and animal charcoals, for example, because of their fine division (greater surface) from the start have a greater capacity for absorption than graphites. Moreover they are still further complicated partly by chemical compounds and partly by impurities. How far the material character is maintained during trituration according to the homoeopathic method cannot be determined simply through mathematical calculation of the atomic size; it depends much more on the technical possibility of subdivision.

In regard to details the type of colloidal actions of graphites on the organism have not been determined with certainty by organ or cell experiment. However we can assume that colloidal graphites is able to provoke states of alteration in the biocolloids, just as silicic acid.

If even the colloids themselves have an optimum of action within a certain breadth of dispersion, then an upper limit of particle size for those within the organic substance, and here especially for their influence on the cells must be presumed for purely mechanical reasons. In the foam-like structure of gelatin, which is assumed also for protoplasm, the capillary space between the structural walls has, at most, a diameter of a few micro-microns; if an excessive pressure is not available, then for the finest actions within the cells the size of the particles must remain below this diameter of the hollow spaces. In any case the size of the particle of a colloid such as graphites, as far as it acts upon the organism, is limited above, while from below on the other hand no limit has yet been found.

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,