The Nitrogen


Likewise on the skin we know a stepladder of chancroid and septic manifestations (toxic erythema, malignant eroding ulcers with stinking secretions, carbuncles) to the more trophoneurotic ulcera cruris and herpes zoster and finally to vasomotor-allergic states as urticaria with burning pain and great restlessness. For the more chronic action we recall the frequent presence of arsenic in the ectodermal structures and its excretion through these which shows the affinity perhaps more obviously than in phosphorus. In particular it proves itself as suitable in dry, desquamating skin processes, hyperkeratosis up to ichthyosis and psoriasis (for all these ars. iod!). Furthermore lichen ruber is an indication for arsenic in both schools. In the chronic poisoning the hyperkeratosis involves outstandingly the palms of the hands and the soles of the feet. The itching in skin affections is characterized in arsenic by the aggravation from cold and scratching, which then passes into burning, falling out of hair, as occurs in phosphorus and phosphates is present, but not frequently used therapeutically.


Arsenic is an important remedy in diabetes. The influence demonstrated first by Hirata in regard to the islands of Langerhans is to be considered for explanation as well as the firm combination with the liver cells and the reduced sugar tolerance in arsenic poisoning. Precisely in the severe forms use is often made of arsenic. But especially in gangrene, phlegmon, carbuncles on a diabetic basis it deserves (besides secale which in contrast to arsenic has improvement from cold) great consideration. For me it has repeatedly given greatest services in the D 6.


In the nervous system the neuritides and neuralgias which appear in the picture of poisoning, are not rarely therapeutic indications. Polyneuritis, facial neuralgia, ciliary neuralgia, sciatica causing furious pain, worse from cold and contact, better from warmth and before all the periodicity of the pain, the midnight aggravation and the burning pain suggest arsenic. Extensive paralyses are scarcely suitable for arsenic. Flexor spasm, trembling, athetoid-like movements of the poison picture occasioned the earlier school use of arsenic in chorea which though not common in homoeopathy is considered homoeopathic. Headaches of a vasomotor type, improved by cold and keeping the head erect have already been mentioned. But also severe vasomotor paroxysms, periodically recurring, unilateral migraines with feeling of coldness or burning with great lassitude and restlessness should cause one to think of arsenic. But especially when the migraine appears as an equivalent of malaria, arsenic has proven itself for me, as in general, arsenic in periodic manifestations after malaria which have been treated by too much quinine, it is the most important agent. In malaria itself arsenic has been recommended from time to time outside of homoeopathy. Outside of the periodicity of the febrile attack, the destruction of blood and cachexia, the splenic swelling in arsenic poisoning to be sure hardly differentiating are parallel manifestations.

Of the mental symptoms the great anxiety and restlessness with fear of death stand in the foreground. The patient constantly changes his position. Doubt drives him from one place to another. In spite of fear of death there also exists the hopeless melancholi with tendency to suicide. The arsenic patient shows great sensitivity toward his own pain which makes him furious and moreover he is fussy and pedantic about disorder in the environment.


That the emaciation and cachexia, often predominating in the total impression in many severe morbid processes, underline the suggestion to arsenic is not surprising; in the acute toxic, states the facies is often hippocratic.

If one compares the picture of arsenic to that of phosphorus similarity of intermediate disturbances and the pathologico- anatomic end stages, the more septic, malignant, ulcerating, gangrenous character in all refer more to arsenic, moreover, the greater disposition to trophic and vasomotor disturbances. If with phosphorus one can indicate the inflammatory and cell degenerative actions still as morbid increases and reversal of physiologic phosphorus functions, then the greater malignity of arsenic may be ascribed to its body- foreign nature. If the hypothesis is correct though it is not proven as yet, that arsenic displaces phosphorus from its physiologic position, then from this the degenerations in its manner of action can be understood. In arsenic we cannot expect a constitution fixed from birth as from the life necessary phosphorus. But still from the endocrine side a certain orientation of the arsenic type of functional domain of the thyroid may be assumed. Because the thyroid plays the chief role in the control and regulation of traces of arsenic which stands very near to the physiologic; furthermore hyperthyroiditic men and animals are sensitive to arsenic (as for phosphorus). Likewise the finer arsenic effects will be suited much better for the hyperthyroiditic, oxygenoid type. Also without reference to the severe intoxications, the cardinal psychic symptoms, restlessness, anxiety, the vasomotor manifestations with tendency to fever, the emaciation proceeds out of this endocrine trend.


In all compounds the arsenic fraction determines the action.

Arsenicum iodatum: Ask3 is slightly stable and still insufficiently proven. Outside of the clinical indications mentioned on p. 279, the transient improvement in malignant lymphoma has been mentioned.

Cuprum arsenicosum, CuHAsO3, is often of value in uremic and eclamptic spasms in D 3 and has seemed favorable in preuremic states and in general anasarca even if not permanently. In severe gastro-enteritis it may be preferred to arsenic when the tendency to convulsions exists.

Natrium arsenicosum, NaAsO2, is recommended in severe inflammation of the nose and accessory sinuses with pressing pain at the root of the nose.

Kalium arsenicosum of approximately the following composition KAsO2, HAsO2 has been the cause of frequent medicinal intoxication as Fowlers solution, in which the skin manifestations, particularly the parakeratosis, stand in the foreground. In contrast, to arsenicum album it is said that the itching is aggravated by warmth. Kal. arsenic, is occasionally recommended in the lower potencies in severe oedemas of chronic nephritis or myocardial weakness in place of arsen. alb.

Calcium arsenicosum, Ca3(AsO3)2 was proven by Hering in 1848 (Jahr, New Manuel or Sympt. Codex. New York, 1852). Its use however occurs in general with the view of shaping the arsenic effect more persistently in deep chronic affections and rests on clinical indications: in malignant glandular tumors, mesenteric lymph gland swelling, liver and spleen swelling in children (in India); in chronic nephritis, when the kidney region is particularly sensitive; moreover in epilepsy with rush of blood to the head, pulsation and pain about the heart before the attack. Similar vasomotor manifestations should also suggest the remedy in fat women at the menopause.


Chief Trends: Parenchymal cells and capillaries.

Carcinoma, malignant ulcero-gangrenous process, septic embolic foci.

Toxic-like action: example: sepsis, cholera. Malignant angina, parenchymatous nephritis, myocarditis. Inflammation of all mucous membranes; gastroenteritis.

Protein destruction: fever, degenerative anemia.

Fatty degenerative changes in organs.

Cardio-Vascular syndrome:tendency to oedema. Great weakness and cachexia.

Diabetes. Results of malaria.

Trophoneurotic: neuritis and neuralgias. Ulcera cruris, herpes zoster, corneal ulcer, gastric ulcer. Diabetic and senile gangrene.

Vasomotor-allergic; asthma, hay fever, cardiac neurosis, headaches and migraine.

Steps of Intensity: Malignant-necrotizing; gangrenous-septic; inflammatory degenerative; trophoneurotic-vasomotor.

Mental Symptoms: Anxiety and restlessness.

Fear of death and still, hopeless melancholia with tendency to suicide.

Hypersensitive toward their own pains and fussy about disorder in the environment.

Guiding Symptoms and Modalities: Restlessness and anxiety (with great weakness).


Aggravation time 12-2 at night.

Great feeling of coldness, desire for warmth (particularly in acute states); gastro-intestinal manifestations better from warm drinks, worse from cold; in headache (vasomotor), improvement from cold and elevation of the head, aggravation from lying down. Itching worse from cold.

Great thirst, frequent but for small quantities (restlessness in acute states).

Burning pain, externally and internally.

Offensive, even cadaverous offensive, acrid secretions.


Arsen. alb. has often proven itself to me in the 6, 12, 15, and 30th potency. For the choice of the potency the above mentioned steps from destructive cell processes to vasomotor symptoms can be used as one guide. Still one sees immediate improvement in severe organic disease at times even from the high potencies.

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,