EDITORIAL NOTES AND COMMENTS


A married woman in the fifties came to us with a history of chronic arthritis of the rheumatic variety. We dread these cases. for reasons obvious to all prescribers, and felt that here was another case in which we were likely to fail. The usual symptoms presented themselves; the modalities were time-honored, but one stood out most prominently-general aggravation from high winds.


Verifications.-A youth of nineteen summers and as many winters recently developed an impetigo on his otherwise calm and placid face. Unsightly pustules with yellowish crusting, showed themselves upon the chin, under it, on the cheeks and near the nose. Mezereum 45m F., one dose, was given, but the eruption went merrily on. One week later one dose of Dulcamara mm F. was given, with immediate improvement; within another week the eruption had gone, leaving nothing but the underlying redness of the skin, visible. The interesting point is, that one dose of the millionth potency turned the trick. Suggestion, sleight-of- hand, or what will you?.

A woman of fifty winters and no doubt as many summers, developed, after radium treatment for Keloid, an intense itching of the skin, followed later by a dermatitis of the hands and feet, with copious scaling of the skin. Radium brom. 30th, four times a day for three days, stopped the itching. Later, one dose of Mezereum 45m F. cleared up the skin quickly.

A religious fanatic of fifty-eight years, and of course unmarried, who resorts to fervid praying upon slight provocation, complained that she was losing her temper without cause and that she would then curse people roundly, much to their astonishment. For our edification she gave us a few choice samples of her expletive vocabulary, which we would designate as most artistic and suggestive of the waterfront along South Street.

Her gentle bringing up seemed quite incompatible with such sporadic outbreaks of vulgar speech, so we gave her one dose of Anacardium cm F., which put an end to her blasphemous, emotional outbreaks. Anacardium is the Marking-nut tree, which grows in the West Indies. If we invoke the doctrine of signatures, the selection of this remedy is apt., for the patient has all the characteristics of what we Americanos understand by the term “nut”.

A married woman in the fifties came to us with a history of chronic arthritis of the rheumatic variety. We dread these cases. for reasons obvious to all prescribers, and felt that here was another case in which we were likely to fail. The usual symptoms presented themselves; the modalities were time-honored, but one stood out most prominently-general aggravation from high winds.

At this we jumped as a catfish does for a juicy worm, and gave one dose of Rhododendron 10 m, Skinner. Improvement has been amazing, much to the delight of both patient and prescriber. The rhododendron grows in mountainous regions, the Poconos, for example, where winds are certainly high, so here again we have our indication and a broad hint for the remedy.

In a recent case of scarlet-fever in a strong, vigorous young man of nearly thirty, Belladonna and Ailanthus had been given by another prescriber. When we saw the case in consultation, temperature and pulse were practically normal, the rash had disappeared, but the patient was extremely loquacious, very restless and sleepless, imagined that he saw people who were not present, in the room, felt that he was oppressed in his head from the light of a nearby window, knew that he was not right in his head, was apprehensive and suspicious of his food and medicine. Careful examination failed to disclose any meningeal involvement and the urine was found to be free from albumin. Hyoscyamus 200th in repeated doses, cleared up all these nervous manifestations within forty-eight hours and convalescence was uneventful thereafter.

We do not wish to imply that prescribing by ourselves is always so happily successful in its results; alas, the professional path is strewn with many failures; the verifications as detailed above, illustrate, however, certain facts, of value to the painstaking prescriber.

In another chronic case, one of exophthalmic goitre in woman approaching her climacterium, Iodin and Natrum mur. have proved curative; we have several times referred to these two remedies as having great value in Basedows disease; no homoeopathic prescriber should fail to study these antipsorics in the treatment of his Basedowic patients. However, as this womans menstruation was becoming more irregular and hot flashes were manifesting themselves most uncomfortably, Lachesis was resorted to, but without result.

Trembling, weakness and sweat following the flashes, were now elicited as characteristics and one dose of Sulphuric acid cm F. was accordingly given. A real transformation of this womans condition has taken place; she has now been on this dose for over four weeks and repetition seems as yet unnecessary. It is all very marvelous and startling, this hitting the right remedy, but deduced difficult so often, that a success now and then makes us feel like a boy with a new toy. The honor, though, belongs to dear old Father Hahnemann, the credit is altogether his.

Comparison.- For those who are interested in statistics the following information will have importance. The Christian Science Journal for October, 1926, published in Boston, and the official organ of The First Church of Christ, Scientist, in Boston, Mass., lists approximately 347 Christian Science practitioners in New York (Manhattan and Bronx). In the same boroughs we find 388 nominal homoeopaths. To those who know, these facts are significant and admit of illuminating interpretation as well as of interesting speculation.

America, as our Teutonic friends are fond of saying, is the land of unbounded possibilities, and right here is a choice specimen for consideration.

Calcium Chloride in Therapeutics.-“Pinerua relates that for twelve years he has been using calcium chloride with good results. In a case of acute pulmonary lesions in man of fifty with hemoptysis and pains in the kidneys, with tubercle bacilli in sputum and urine-the whole clinical picture developing in six months after an attack of influenza-the condition improved remarkably under calcium chloride. The fever disappeared in less than three weeks, and by the thirty-fourth injection the cure seemed to be complete, except that an intercurrent otitis has impaired the hearing during the year since. In a case of extensive and extremely painful tuberculous peritonitis in a boy, aged twelve, a daily injection of 2 gm. of calcium chloride in 10 cc. of water was given by the vein to a total of forty injections, when the boy was discharged completely cured. In some of the numerous cases treated with the calcium chloride there was a reaction to the first injection amounting almost to actual shock, but it was transient in all.” – J.A.M.A.

Yes, Calcium is of great value in tuberculous or psoric constitutions; Hahnemann pointed out this fact in his Chronic Diseases. Calcarea carbonica or ostrearum is the preparations have been used; of these, Calcarea muriatica or calcium chloride is one. Calcarea phosphorica is perhaps second in importance of all the calcium salts, ranking next to Calcarea ostrearum; the difference between these two remedies, are well known to all prescribers. We could not well get along without Calcarea, in homoeopathic practice, especially where children are concerned.

The Cardiac.-How well we remember him, many years ago, before we had entered upon our medical studies, full of hope and confidence. He was portly, even then, with red, jovial face, thick lips and reddened nose; his hair already thin, was of reddish hue and plastered neatly down upon his ample dome. Hail fellow, well met, he was; fond of good living and of vintage wines and straight American “red likker.”

He dined, not always wisely, but too well, and as one of the boys, always found agreeable companionship. We see him yet, as he nonchalantly sauntered down the street, hat slightly cocked to one side, but we seem to recall, that close proximity revealed a certain laboriousness of breathing, which we put down to his excessive embonpoint.

And now, many years later, more than we care to tell, we see him again; in fact, rather frequently does he come to us, the same red face and still redder nose, rather more shiny than in the good old days, the eyes are bleary, the hair is now white, except that the dome is bare and no longer plastered over as of yore. The embonpoint is still much in evidence, surmounted by a gaudy geographic vest, with heavy gold watch chain illuminating the insistent rotundity.

But the breathing is now really short, there is no mistake about it; one can hear it plainly, especially when any extra effort is and uncomfortable, so that he must get up from bed, especially during the very small, early morning hours. He no longer dines well, but rather more wisely, especially as his kidneys give evidence of a chronic inflammation; the blood-pressure rises to uncomfortable heights and the pulse is tricky. We think of arteriosclerosis, especially of the coronary arteries, since now and again severe heart pain comes on and still further frightens an already nervous old man of seventy-two.

Cold is badly borne and apt to make him cough, explosive paroxysms increase the redness of his face and warn of serious crises, which may be impending.

We laugh together and joke about the old times, when Manhattans were dispensed over the justly famous Hoffman House bar, at two for a quarter, if you please! And then we go to the medicine cabinet and from the maze of remedies and potencies we fish out Arsenicum album 30th, a few doses to be tucked away beneath that lordly paunch. Nor are we disappointed in its action, for it always does him good and will continue to carry him on, until that tired heart finally lays down its burden, forevermore.

Such is the simplicity and the versatility of homoeopathy, playing all parts with simple directness and playing each one well, without the aid of props or gaudy trappings. Tis a field for the artist, the creator who loves his work and expresses himself in it; he needs no artifices or devices; he knows what he can do and in this thought is quite content and satisfied.

Post Hoc or Propter Hoc! Which Is It? – An elderly, though very energetic and active patient, recently called upon us with a startling pallor upon his face; the term ashen, rather a favorite with writers of lurid stories, would aptly describe his countenance. He was very weak and had, in fact, reached our office with much difficulty. A few questions revealed the history of a discharge of dark blood from the rectum, several days before, but with normal stools since and no return of bleeding.

No pain had been complained of, nor was any pain present now; an examination of the abdomen was negative, as no tumor could be felt and the liver and spleen were of normal proportions; no evidence of any inflammatory condition could be elicited. The blood-pressure was extremely low, 100/60. The pulse was compressible and somewhat rapid. Vertigo, with pulsation in the ears and buzzing and a tendency to walk to the left, were complained of. A blood specimen was immediately taken for examination, and the report, received on the following day, showed-

Haemoglobin…………………..45.

Red blood cells…………2,640,000.

Haemoglobin index……………0.85.

Leucocytes………………..13,200.

We need no present the rest of the details of the examination, other than to state, that the pathologic findings were those of a marked degree of secondary anaemia.

One dose of Natrum mur. 20m F. was given and the patient sent home to rest for several days, after which he travelled to Chicago, to keep an important business engagement. He was seen again fifteen days later, looking very much better and feeling decidedly stronger, though by no means entirely well. His blood pressure was now 120/80. The aural noises had entirely disappeared and vertigo was no longer present. A second examination of the blood was made and presented the following findings-

Haemoglobin…………………..45.

Red blood cells…………3,200,000.

Haemoglobin index…………… 0.7.

Leucocytes………………..11,800.

The pathologists report reads, in part- “As compared with the previous count, the red cells are better in appearance and are higher in number, although still running much below the average . . .”

Of course, a period of sixteen days is hardly long enough to expect much change in the blood picture; nevertheless the improvement in this picture, together with that of the patient himself, is significant and speaks well for our old friend, Natrum muriaticum. The cause of the haemorrhage is still to be found and may be discovered in an ulcer, somewhere within the intestinal tract, or possibly in a carcinoma. Our purpose here is, merely to call attention to the evident response to a single dose of a remedy, highly and perhaps ridiculously potentized to the dizziest heights.

A New Homoeopathic Publication.-There has recently come to our editorial table the first number, volume 1, of The Homoeopathic Survey, to be issued quarterly by the American Foundation for Homoeopathy, Inc., of Washington, D.C. This foundation has, without fuss and feathers, been quietly working for the cause of pure homoeopathy, during the past few years, and each summer provides a post-graduate course in homoeopathic philosophy, materia medica, therapeutics and repertory analysis, given by a number of the ablest and most ardent teachers of homoeopathy in the country. Its work is divided among four bureaus, as follows: BUREAU OF INVESTIGATIONS:

Opportunity at Headquarters for intensive study of the principles of Homoeopathy; the use of the Repertory, of the Materia Medica; case-taking and record-keeping; and the preparation of drugs. Other centers to be established.

BUREAU OF RESEARCH AND DEMONSTRATION:

Drug proving; Demonstration of the law of cure in clinics and hospitals; laboratory research bearing upon Homoeopathy; correlation of Homoeopathy to other sciences and philosophies: e.g., chemistry, physics, electricity, psychology, sociology.

BUREAU OF PUBLICATION:

Report of all Foundation activities; accumulation of data for use of students and investigators; facts for laymen; reprinting of much valuable material now out of print; complete index and file of all homoeopathic literature; legacy of homoeopathic libraries for supplying new centers; collection of Hahnemanniana and various relics pertaining to homoeopathy.

BUREAU OF PUBLICITY:

Intensive work for laymen conducted by laymen with the guidance of qualified homoeopathic physicians; instruction in the simple fundamentals of medicine; encouragement to think soundly and independently about medicine; equipment with basis of choice as between physicians of different kinds, so that laymen may carry their right responsibility for their own health; circuit field visits to centers of interest; talks to gatherings by invitation; establishment of Laymens Leagues everywhere; written publicity, periodic and permanent”.

It will be seen, therefore, that this organization has adopted an ambitious program, one which, if adhered to, will eventually check the decadent spirit which, if adhered to, will eventually check the decadent spirit which homoeopathy has evinced in the United States within recent years. Such an organization needs a medium of expression, and the new publication, The Homoeopathic Survey, under the guidance of its brilliant editorial staff, Dr. Benjamin C. Woodbury, Mr. Arthur B. Green and his talented sister, Dr. Julia M. Green, will undoubtedly measure up to the great demands which will be made upon it. Their announcement of the purpose of the Foundation reveals its high character-

“The purpose of Medicine, as we generally accept it, is to heal the sick; but the real purpose of Medicine is to establish and to increase the power to remain well. The ideal of Medicine, as we generally accept it, is to correct the abnormal so that they may become normal; but the higher ideal of Medicine is to strengthen individuality, to reveal character, and to endow with the full power of inborn talents.

It is to these higher aims that True Medicine addresses itself.

The American Foundation for Homoeopathy is not a sect built upon a narrow creed. It represents fundamentals, on which all medicine depends, and is pledged to teach them, to increase scientific understanding of them, to record the work of the Profession, and to spread sound doctrine to the people”.

The Homoeopathic Survey is published at 1811 H Street N.W., Washington, D.c.; its subscription price is two dollars per years. THE HOMOEOPATHIC RECORDER bids this newcomer to the ranks of medical journalism welcome, and wishes it success, long life and an unrestricted field of usefulness in the spreading of Hahnemannian principles and practice.

Digitalis May Cause Fibrillation.-“Digitalis may produce auricular fibrillation. I had one such case under observation several years ago (Selian Neuhof on The Heart, Blakistons Sons & Co. ). A boy with a decompensated mitral regurgitant lesion and an otherwise rhythmic heart showed fibrillation every time he was under the maximum effects of the tincture of digitalis. Polygraphic tracings left no doubt as to the type of the arrhythmia. I tried the digitalis experiment several times; when the drug was discontinued, fibrillation stopped and the pulse became regular at the end of a day or so; when it was again administered the auricles again fibrillated.

It is interesting to note that, though the auricles were fibrillating, the patient felt perfectly well and compensation was completely restored. In this case the toxic action of digitalis upon the vagus was probably responsible for the arrhythmia; at the same time the contractile power of the heart that is its pumping power-was considerably improved by the drug. It has been shown experimentally that if the entire gastro-intestinal tract of a cat be removed from esophagus to anus, the digitalis be injected intravenously, the cat will go through the action of emesis. In other words, the drug apparently possesses some action upon the cerebral center. Thus, the vomiting caused by digitalis may be similarly explained in patients to whom we have given too much digitalis, or who are particularly susceptible to the drug.

It offers a more plausible explanation than the usual one that digitalis causes vomiting by irritating the gastric mucosa.” -The Pan-Therapist.

Well, yes, and another illustration of the homoeopathicity of Digitalis to many cardiac symptoms, especially those of the state known as decompensation, even though it may be necessary to use this drug in tincture form. Potencies are not always indicated or successful under such circumstances.

Mr. Mazzini Stuart, of Liverpool, who owns the copyright of this remarkable work and will later present it to the trustees of Hahnemann House, Powis Place, London, Haehls work has appeared in the English language. To Haehl, first of all, belongs the credit of this history of homoeopathy and of Hahnemann, the story of whose life, authoritatively and carefully written, reads like a fascinating novel, for Haehl has delved into the remotest corner of antiquity and has presented to us the living Hahnemann himself-the man, the physician, the scholar, the chemist, the linguist, the seeker after Truth-for Hahnemann was all these and more.

Allan D. Sutherland