Homoeopathic Case Taking

Homoeopathic case taking and use of characteristic symptoms to select the homeopathic remedy with some wonderful case examples….

There are three cavities in the body containing organs the first one being the head the most noble one because in protects the capital of the man. It is of course his capital his millions of dollars which are there it is his friend, his intelligence and his work. It is very thick. It has only small apertures, as in a bank, you know, one or two windows. The second one is the chest. It is made of flesh and bone. You can look through it, you can see through as in a jail. This contains the heart the lungs, and the abdomen organs, the thymus and so on. The third one is the abdomen. It has no walls and has nothing before that. It has only muscles, but no bones to protect. Here only on one side it is protected. With an umbrella you can pierce it if you like. So this is the third one.

And what is interesting? The first one contains the brain which is working at our will. We can do what we like. This is ours to command. But here in the chest, we cannot command very much we can breathe more quickly we can breathe more slowly but we cannot stop breathing for 20 hours. And the heart you can to make it work more quickly but you cannot command your heart like your will. So there the commands are not so important. But here in the abdomen you can command nothing. Here every organ works by itself while you sleep, like the regulation of the temperature which keeps you at 37 degree C., the organs responsible for digestion for urination etc. everything goes on working without our will.

Now the Lord arranges everything in such a way that every part of the body reveals also the total every small part reveals the whole. The face, for example, can be divided into three different parts: the eyes and the part above it, the part between the eyes and the lips and the part above it the part between the eyes and the lips and the part below that. Here in the first part, you have the eye and the forehead. When you are angry, you frown (the forehead furrows) So also, with your eyes. You can face somebody and fire somebody, or you can make sweet-eyes (winking), you know. Now these are all connected with the brain.

Then in the second part, there is the nose. In serious diseases, the nose is flapping for example in the lung disease. Or with the heart disease, you can see a little telangiectasis or blue vessels visible on the side of the nose.

And the third one is the mouth. And the mouth and the lips can say many things. Big bulding lips express people who are very greedy for eating good eating also for love, because you kiss with the lips. This corresponds to the genital parts. Only by looking at the face, you may know everything in the body.

There are people who by looking at the hands or at the nails can tell you everything and some of them by the form of teeth. They can tell you everything from the skull. One of my pupils had discovered that the ear is the inverse of the foetus and that there you have the vertebral column above, and below that the eyes and the nose, then you have skin. There you have the geographical map of the whole body in the ear, and by touching certain points with the needle sometimes you can cure things at once.

Ladies who have always tiresome backaches, who always have a pain there, just touch near the corner of the ear there, very near point 4 of 5 and 2, and when you touch it, the pain which they have had for 4 or 5 weeks sometimes disappears. Now they have no pains In 10 seconds the pain has gone. Repeat after 8 days, sometimes not. It is amazing but I have not the time today to speak to you about the marvellous method of acupuncture.

Now I told you listen, observe write. After this comes examination. Examine the patient carefully. Examine your patient with all the modern ways, with most modern methods. For what purpose, Of course you may say for diagnosis if you like to please yourself. But in reality this is very important for you, for your homoeopathic diagnosis.

At kent says, when you write down the symptoms divide your page into two parts, you write your pathognomonic symptoms and in the other there, your non-pathognomonic symptoms. When a man comes with cough and says there is a pain there when he coughs, with sputum, with sputum which is yellow, anything about the cough you write it here. But when he tells you, for example there is a chill in his left leg when he is coughing or that he has any curious symptom that you do not know why he has it, we put it there on the other side, on the non-pathognomonic side.

Now I remember the story of Dr. Charette. He wrote a very interesting book, “What is Homoeopathy?” If you have not read it, you should read this because it is very amusing and full of funny things. but what is interesting? One day a doctor came to him and told him, “You know, I have been treated for three months. I have a terrible vertigo, a very curious giddiness every time I read and you know I cannot read any book any book, I cannot read any paper. I am very cross.

I went to the specialists who put me put me on the whirling chair and tried to find out what is wrong with me. They could not diagnose what is the disease. They looked into my ears. They looked into my throat. They found nothing. They gave me massage they gave me electricity but you know I still have the vertigo. What to do? And now it is so simple for a homoeopath. If a remedy has ever produced giddiness while reading. you can cure this patient. Now sometimes, I feel you can make the diagnosis of th disease also by knowing the remedy and you can know the other symptoms. So Dr. S. tried to do something which is sometimes tedious but he said, “I am sure this in this is in the materia medica”.

He did not know anything about it but he tried to put this affirmation. “But when and where, I do not know, I will search and i will read all of Hahnemann’s materia medica from beginning to to end until I find the remedy for this vertigo.” The physician thought it was a very nice way of course. If it had been in the letter “S” it would have taken many months. But you know the Lord is so marvellous and kind, it was in the letter `A’ Otherwise it could have been Aconite, Agnus castus, or Ailanthus glandulosa, Allium cepa or Ammonium carbonicum or something like that. It was at the end of the letter `A’ and by turning the pages it took something like seven hours for Dr. S.

The remedy was Arnica but when you find Arnica for a case with a curious symptom like that you think there must be traumatism. He asked his patient. “Have you ever had any trouble something like an accident?. “No no, never” But when he persisted “Do you ever remember having had an accident?, he said, `Yes One day I was asked early in the morning to see an emergency case. I did not have my car. I took a taxi and I told him to go quickly, jaldhi 3 to the place and you know I went to the car and we came into a road where there was a little depression, and so I bumped my head against the top of the vehicle. And since that time I have vertigo’ So homoeopathy knows when you have vertigo and it corresponds to Arnica you must have had traumatism.

It is curious that you can thus make the diagnosis and have the remedy. But you know it would have been easier if the doctor would have known the use of the repertory. If you take vertigo and search under the rubric you will find `vertigo aggravated by reading’ There are many remedies here. But what is interesting? There is only one remedy which has Vertigo on reading a long time and that remedy is Arnica. There are other remedies for other kinds of reading e.g. reading there is still another remedy. You know you are learning a lot of things b studying the repertory. So everybody must possess a repertory besides the Organs, besides his materia medica and besides he will have his memory in the first cavity (head), you know so that you will be able to find the remedy very quickly.

So much about the value of symptoms. Now examine your patient thoroughly. You of course, know what are the symptoms which are pathognomonic. Do not take them into consideration first. Take them last. If the patient has pain in the knee, pain in the eye, pain or trouble in the right arm, don’t care about it. You don’t throw it away, no. But set it aside simply. And if he has any symptoms which are funny, like the symptoms of the nose, like the symptoms of giddiness, funny symptoms of course these you must take into consideration first.

You put down and you begin to study first your non-pathognomonic symptoms; and your best cures will always be down with the non-pathognomonic symptoms. Now, if you have very few symptoms you must take what is available, then you must take the pathognomonic symptoms. But the more you can take care of those others (non-pathognomonic) the better will be the cure. Forget the disease, see the patient, see the symptoms which he predicated of himself. These will help you to find the right remedy better than anything else.

Now comes the time, you must co-ordinate. the fifth stage is co-ordination. This is the stage to co-ordinate the symptoms, to establish the value of symptoms, to weight. It is a question of quantity for the allopath while for the homoeopath it is a question of quality because homoeopathy is a method of quality. Now when you have symptoms what are the types of symptoms that are most important? It is not the question of taking down all the symptoms of the patient, page after page As Dr. Weir has very well said, “Take the minimum symptoms of maximum importance” What are the symptoms that are most important? There are exactly five categories of symptoms. If you remember this, and if you take care of this, you will make beautiful cures.

First the mind symptoms providing they are important they re characteristic. If the patient says, “I have no good memory I am sad very often. I am a little dull, I cannot concentrate myself.” There are 500 remedies for each one of these symptoms and it is not very interesting. If you go to the station to search for a friend or somebody you do not know who is arriving, and he wrote to you I have two eyes one nose, two legs and one head, you will not recognise him, but if it is a lady with the green hat, she is squinting you know, she is limping and she has a white handkerchief in her hand, then you will recognise her at once.

So the question is to know the characteristic symptoms and to know what the symptoms that predicate the patient. So you have typical symptoms, I do not have the time today to tell you all the gradations into the mind’s symptoms. It is fascinating to know about the many symptoms of the intellect, which are the ones that are less important. But you will always have weeping symptoms of fear or symptoms of excitation, irritability or weeping sadness or despair and so on always it is possible to find such symptoms.

Now the second, I can indicate this way, the omega ( The last letter of the Greek alphabet meaning here the last chapter in “Kent’s Repertory”.) that is the general symptom. The general symptoms in the repertory are in the repertory are in the last chapter because the repertory is thus make, first the intellect, last general symptoms and in between sandwiched all the rest.

You have all the symptoms coming from the head down, between the intellect and the general. And remember that the general symptoms are those of aggravation by heat or cold, aggravation by different seasons, aggravation by the weather, by the position, by going on the mountains, or near the seashore, by resting, by dozing and you know there are plenty of others. Most materiopathic influences are general symptoms which affect the whole body not only one part. So you have the general symptoms.

Then comes here, the symptoms of th stomach, not of the digestion and so on, but about the aversions and cravings. This is a very important thing. When your ask someone, “Do you like sweet or do you like them” (in a monotonous tone) this is not important. But when you ask, “What about salt?” you see his eyes become bright. He likes it so much that even before tasting the soup he puts salt it. So he has a craving for salt.

People who cannot do without going to sweetmeat merchants for buying sweet things and delicacies, pastries etc., it is a desire a craving for sweets. Now there are people who eat salads you know with vinegar. When it is finished, they take a little vinegar in a spoon and take it, so much they like sour things. So you see this is a craving.

Now, an aversion If somebody makes a face, really it is a disgust, (he means) “No I do not like it” You must note the expression on the face as well as the words expressed by the patient. So you have there the symptoms of cravings or desires.

Now this is a rubric that is very important – Amelioration and aggravation by certain items of food. There are people who like very much food with cream, and sugar and sweet, but they are sick right after no matter how much they like it. So they may have a craving for it and an aggravation from something you like it is curious. But to that you must be at once attentive. When you have a patient acute and very serious stage and his life is in danger if he craves something give it to him. But in chronic cases keep it away. So if somebody likes alcohol in a chronic case, he says when I drink brandy I feel so well you must prohibit it. If in an acute disease he is dying and he wants brandy, give it to him.

Now you have after this the sleep symptoms. The sleep symptoms are very important because when you are asleep you do not know what you are doing and sleep for a physician and a homoeopathic physician is very important. First the position in sleep. It seems to be very funny but there are people who sleep on the abdomen on their stomach. Why I do know, but it is a very good symptoms of Medorrhinum, Pulsatilla and other remedies.

And I know there are people who cannot sleep on the left side. Some others who have heart disease can only lie on the left side. Some of those sleep like that with hands above the head, you know the children must sleep like that. But when an adult sleeps like that he may be having liver disease. There are people with asthma who are always better when lying flat Why? Explain it to me. It is very good non-pathognomonic symptom because we cannot explain it. So remember the position in sleep.

Now what are you doing when you are sleeping. There are people who keep their eyes open. It is funny but it is so. Or they keep eyes half -closed with the eye-balls going up. So you take notice of this of course. Now there are people who squint when they sleep. But some others make a motion like this (chewing) This is Bryonia Of course when a child is making a motion like a rabbit, it is always Bryonia in delirium sometimes or in fever. Now there are people who chatter in sleep. Some of them grind their teeth, some of them clench their teeth as if they do not like to open as in trismus or tetanus. there are people who talk.

There are people who shriek. There are people who sing. Some of them weep. It is interesting to watch somebody in sleep when you can find so many symptoms. There are people who slide down the bed by morning well, you see these things are interesting. When they slide down like this habitually, they sleep with their jaws open and this is a very good symptoms of Muriatic acid. Every body knows it. So you see by looking at the different states of the sleep you can learn a lot. Now the sleep can be restless, it can be comatose, it can be semiconscious.

You know the different kinds of sleep. There are restless people who always roll up and down. In the morning they must search for the different pieces of the bedding around them. Others remain exactly as they were. You can find all these in the repertory. Open the repertory and you will learn a lot. By turning the pages you find different things, they correspond to certain remedies out of which you can choose.

Then there is sleepiness. Some people are sleepy in the daytime when they are listening to a lecture, they just begin to doze. There are people who cannot listen or go to a lecture without closing their eyes, or they begin to sleep after lunch. There was a notary. When he was writing what the client had said to him, he was in what we call as narcolepsy. It was a terrible heaviness of his sleepiness. He could not help closing his eyes. It was a disease. Of course, Opium will help him.

Then there are people who are sleepless. Sleeplessness can be in the beginning of the night. It can be in the second part of the night. it can be from 1 to 2, from 2 to 3 from 2 to 3 from 4 to 5 and these are indications for different remedies. When in the morning it is Natrum Sulph. When it is from 2 to 3 or 1 to 2, it can be Kali carb., Kali ars., and so on. Every body knows those little shades. There are people who are very sleepy. They cannot keep their eyes open in the evening, but the moment they are in the bed they cannot sleep. This is very often Ambra or such other remedies. Open your repertory do not break your head. Open your repertory and read. You must have the Organon, materia medica and a repertory plus your brain which helps you.

Now come the dreams. There are dream which are repeating every time. There are dream which are prophetic. The moment they dream something the next day it will happen. The patient begins to dream one day and then it continues all the week like in a cinema. It is funny but there are people you know, who have dreams that are exhausting e.g. as if they are climbing mountains In the morning they are all covered with sweat and they feel so tired. All this is found in the repertory. Open your repertory. See such of these things.

And to finish the last about this. This is co-ordination. Co- ordination of the sexual symptoms. Of course this requires the tact and the delicacy of thought of the physician to talk of this question with the patient.

You will never begin with this. If you know how to handle human hearts and human beings they will tell you very easily their troubles, especially their sexual troubles that they will hide from everybody else. You must know if the patient is plus or minus whether he has hyper or exaggerated feeling of sex or the other one, no feeling or aversion. You also deviations and abnormal possibilities.

You will know many more things. I have not the time to tell today. By looking at the patient you can know many things that he will not tell you, I see very much my corneal microscope. I can know at once if the patient has onanism, masturbation, if he is much excited, if a lady is a virgin or not and so on. I can know from the eyes many of the impulses of the human being put I have not the time today to expose this to you all it is very complicated. But one thing I will tell you. In this part comes for the everything pertaining to the menses.

But what interests us, it is not only to know about the menses if the colour is dark or the colour is pale or reddish but also if it is in clots, irritating the parts or if it is offensive or if it is bland or about the quality of the blood if it is more at night or more in day time, more in the morning if it stains the linen, if they are yellow or of different colours and so on. You may find in the repertory all the answers for these questions. This is very important. Now you have, you know, with the repertory and with your Organon, many things to ponder over and I think with all these explanations you will be able to feel the enthusiasm, that I feel for homoeopathy.

Pierre Schmidt
Pierre Schmidt M.D.(1894-1987)
Dr. Schmidt was introduced to the results of homeopathic treatment during the 1918 flu epidemic while living in London. There he met both J. H. Clarke and John Weir.
In 1922 he came to the United States and began his studies with Alonzo Austin and Frederica Gladwin, who had been a pupil of Kent's. He became the first graduate of the American Foundation for Homeopathy course for doctors. Returning to his native land he set up practice in Geneva, Switzerland. He was responsible for reintroducing classical homeopathy into Europe, teaching several generations of physicians, including Elizabeth Wright Hubbard.
Dr. Schmidt helped edit the "Final General Repertory" of Kent, and translated the Organon into French. In 1925, he was one of the main founders of the Liga Medicorum Homoeopathic Internationalis (LIGA).