These provings or experiment were conducted under the direction of Dr.R.F.Rabe, secretary of the American Institute of Drug Proving, at the New York Homoeopathic Medical College and Flower Hospital, and under the immediate supervision of Dr.F.H.Hirschland, of the department of Pathology, to whom full credit is due for the results of these experiments. Herewith appended is the report, as submitted by Dr.Hirschland:
“It was in the early part of December, 1919, when Dr. Rabe suggested these Drug – Provings which I began in January on small laboratory animals and later with students of this institution, and as well as with nurses of Flower Hospital. I wish to express my deep appreciation of the spirit of co – operation, as well as for the assistance Dr.Rabe has given me throughout these last four months. Both the students and nurses faithfully persevered in the work, and I wish to thank them also.
“The first two drugs used in the proving were Kali bichromicum, and the homoeopathic tincture of Iodine. The test animals were guinea – pigs of an average weight of 350 grams. The Kali bichromicum was used in the 2x, 3x, 6x, 12x, 30x potencies, and one animal was kept as control. The first of the guinea – pigs to die was the one which was fed on the 30x potency. (The drug was given in tablet form with the food.) The animal showed signs of restlessness at the eighth day of the proving; it had for two days a watery discharge from the nose, did not take any food for about 36 hours, and died on the 11th day. An autopsy was performed 6 hours after death; the gross – pathological findings were: Septic peritonitis, dilatation of the stomach with acute gastritis and acute parenchymatous nephritis. The organism isolated from the peritoneal exudate was the streptococcus pyogenes.
The source of this infection could not be found. Microscopic examination of the diseased organs confirmed the gross – pathological findings. The four remaining animals showed a distinct gain in weight of about 50 grams on the average, after 21 days. Then the animal receiving the 6x showed a rapid loss, which amounted to 65 grams in 5 days, when the animal died. Autopsy was performed immediately and the findings were: Congestion and oedema of both lungs, a cloudy swelling of the kidneys and an acute degeneration of the spleen. The doses of the drugs were increased after this to twice the former amount of 6 tablets a day.
The three remaining animals were weighed again, showing an increase which amounted to 25 grams on the average. The next guinea – pig which became sick, was the one which was fed on the 12x. The animal did not eat well for about 6 days, losing 75 grams of its weight, finally refused all food and died on the ninth day. The autopsy, held the same day, showed a lobar pneumonia of the right lung, congestion and oedema of the left lung, acute gastritis with dilatation of the stomach and a cloudy swelling of the kidney. The two animals which received the 2x and 3x doses together with the control animal, remained unaffected.
Great care was taken that the animals were not exposed to cold, that they were not overfed, that they were given the proper kind of food, and that they were in a good condition before the drug – proving was begun. It may be safely said that at least the lesions, produced in the stomach and kidneys and partly those in the lungs, can be ascribed to the drug. Further proofs of this, however, must be collected by subjecting other sets of animals to the same test, under the same conditions, as near as possible.
“The homoeopathic tincture of Iodine was given per mouth to three guinea – pigs, in amounts of 2, 3 and 4 drugs, which dose was increased later two weeks to 4, 6 and 8 drops, respectively. At first the animals gained weight, probably due to the alcoholic stimulus, but after a while the 6 and 8 drops animals lost what they had gained and in addition, 50 grams. They both died about the 21st day. Both had an intense inflammation of the gastto – intestinal tract; both had an oedema of the lungs and a parenchymatous inflammation of the kidneys. These organs seemed to be the ones most affected by the drug. The animal which was on a three – times – a – day – 4 – drop – dose remained alive. The dose was apparently too small to have a sufficient toxic effect.
“The third drug was given to three guinea – pigs, to three students (male) and to three nurses (female) – the name and nature of the drug was withheld from the provers, but it was Benzol. One student was used as a control. The drug was given to the animals in the fluid form, 2, 4 and 6 drops, three times a day. A strong male rabbit was also subjected to the test and was given 10 drops twice a day. The animal remained absolutely unaffected, as far as we could see. The 4 drops guinea – pig showed signs of paralysis of one leg at about the 6th day and became completely paralyzed in both hind legs on the tenth day. It died on the 12th day. The autopsy showed infarct formation in the liver, kidneys and one lung; the cause of death was oedema of the lung.
The 6 drops guinea – pig died the 17th day. A high grade of anaemia was found in the lungs and the formation of an abscess and an infarct in the liver, as well as areas of focal necrosis and parenchymatous degeneration in the kidney. As to the human provers, the history of some of them is interesting. They were subjected to a physical examination, their weight was taken, a chemical and microscopic analysis of the urine was made and a complete blood – count. The female team proved to be of higher value than the male, this latter one having one or two members who were inclined to emphasize minor disturbances. The control prover remained unaffected throughout the test.
He did, however, complain one afternoon about having a severe frontal headache, which, he says, was greatly relieved by studying. Prover No. 1 was in fair physical condition when he started. He was given blank pills for four days. The fifth day he was given the drug in the 1st decimal potency four times a day. His blood count was 5,770,000 at the beginning, Erythrocytes, the lymphocytes, being 6,800. The number of red cells decreased to 5,000,000, and the number of white cells increased to 10,400 within 10 days. The haemoglobin was 90 per cent. at the first examination and dropped to 85 and finally 75, during a period of 25 days. The polynuclears remained stable, the small lymphocytes showed a slight increase.
The prover often complained of headache, especially on the right side, of sweating, swelling of the right testicle with severe pain, of nausea and loss of sleep. The appetite was not as good as usual, and the student often felt tired Urine was passed in greater quantities than normally. The second prover received the 3rd decimal potency, after he had been taking blank pills for four days. In this prover there was also a decrease in the number of red cells and an increase in the number of white cells. This student also complained about a severe pain in the testicles, which were red and enlarged, the pain being relieved by supporting the scrotum. Profuse urination was found, restlessness and nervousness. The symptoms were aggravated at night.
A perspiration which had existed previous to the taking of the drug, has practically ceased. It came back, however, to some extent, after the proving was over. Twice the student complained of a terrific frontal headache extending to the root of the nose and which was worse on motion and lasted until midnight. For a few days there was a constant pain in the eye – balls and the lids, which was accompanied by a dilatation of the pupils. The third prover who took the 6x potency, showed the first symptom on the ninth day, in the form of painless, discrete, right – sided eruptions about the face and neck. On the 11th day he had a profuse hemorrhage from the right side of the neck, with no apparent lesion or cause.
Throughout the taking of the drug there was an itching sensation at the anal orifice and at times all over the body. This prover did not show any decrease in the red cells, which remained stationary at about 6,000,000, while his white cells increased from 7,000 to 10,000. The fourth prover, a female, had at the beginning of the test, a haemoglobin content of 90 per cent., which decreased to 75 per cent. during the test. At the same time the number of red blood cells sunk from 5,290,000 to 4,600,000, and the write cells went up from 8,200 to 11,400.
This prover received the 6x and did not show any symptoms for 10 days. After that a coryza developed, which what at its height every a,m., accompanied by violent sneezing, lasting from 1-2 hours. There was no sleep before midnight and great restlessness during sleep; the prover felt tired right after sleep and all day, the appetite was poor and the action of the bowels more sluggish than normal.
“The fifth prover was, so far as physical condition is concerned, almost perfect.”
“The first blood count showed 4,850,000 red cells and 6,500 white cells. There was a loss of 300,000 red cells after 15 days, while the white cells doubled themselves. This proved was also a female and received the 12 decimal potency. She often complained of slight frontal headache, pain in the lower abdomen and of frequent nausea, especially after lunch; there was also a frequent desire for stool without much result.
“The last prover had an initial blood count of 5,100,000 red cells and 8,200 white cells and a final count of 4,200,000 red cells and 11,600 leukocytes. This prover, also a female, was given the 30x. Shortly after commencing the proving she complained about a sour taste in the mouth, gastric disturbances, nausea, loss of appetite, regurgitation and a constant inclination to vomit. There was great restlessness day and night, and sleep was often interrupted.
After 10 days the prover began to develop peculiar symptoms in the eyes. Her vision became very poor, especially on the right side, objects were blurred and wavered; the eyes began to ache and vision of the right eye was at times absent. Inspection showed the pupils to be extremely dilated, the right more than the left, the eyeballs being very sensitive to touch. The right pupil did not react to daylight and only slightly to artificial light. The left pupil reacted somewhat better. This condition remained uncharged for about 5 days, and then gradually and slowly cleared up. It came back, however, to a lesser degree, for a period of about 4 days and then disappeared.
“The most striking fact in the proving of benzol seems to be the influence it had on the circulatory system. It caused a slowing of the blood stream which in the guinea – pigs brought about the formation of infarcts. In the human provers it resulted in a decrease of the red and in an increase of the white cells in general”.