Read before the Texas Homoeopathic Medical Association, oct. 14, 1931.
Thinking that Homoeopathy, the Medical Court of Last Resort would be a happier title than the announced one of Miracles with Homoeopathic Medicines, I have made the change. I have, however, made no change in contents of the paper, so I need make no apology for repeating a second paper with the latter title. However, the cases reported to you last year were so trite that any novitiate student of homoeopathy could not fail to see the Similimum. They were given as simple proof of the quick action of the homoeopathic remedy. Both papers refute the common impression among many of the laity that our medicines are slow in action. In addition I will present evidence that homoeopathy is the medical court of last resort.
There is, seemingly, a false basis for this idea among the laity that homoeopathic medicines are slow in action, especially so when we sometimes tell a patient it may take two to five years to cure him of a chronic disease which, if he only realized, was years and years in developing, in fact, began before he was born – before his parents were born. How could he expect to be cured in a month or two? Of course, he may be relieved immediately by the homoeopathic remedy like a barked tree that may be painted over in five minutes, but to heal the wound of the tree requires years of growth.
In man it takes years of growth under the stimulus of the homoeopathic remedy, to cure chronic diseases. He must grow well just as he grew sick. The speed of a cure is in direct ratio to the speed or rapidity of the progress of the disease. I also call my patients attention to the fact that they had already been taking treatments for years by old school physicians, who failed to check the tendency to pathological ultimates. Therefore, they should not be impatient with Homoeopathy which can cure. A cure in two or three years is rapid compared with never.
All homoeopathic medicine in potency form act the moment they are placed on the tongue.
I have seen threatened pneumonias, which developed in a few hours, aborted in half the time of development by medicines with a similar rapid pace such as Aconite, Belladonna, Bryonia, Phosphorus, etc. So homoeopathy is not slow. When I fail to abort my pneumonia in the first stage I consider the fact that I have bungled and try to do better the next time.
Man is so fallible. There is so much of principle involved in making a homoeopathic prescription that it is not surprising that we often fail, especially when cases are improperly taken.
In selecting the homoeopathic remedy one must consider the pace of the disease and select his remedy among the group of medicines that have that pace. The same disease may have a varying pace in different individuals, just as do many medicines (and may be indicated in both acute and chronic diseases). Bryonia is generally considered a remedy for acute diseases, but I know of no more frequently needed medicine for those elderly women who are constipated and suffer much with vertigo.
Bryonia is almost an absolute specific for those cases, many of which are slightly rheumatic. Silica and Natrum muriaticum have this double nature, i.e., acute and chronic. In chronic diseases it may take several months for the remedy to manifest its action, while in acute diseases I have seen Silica bring relief in two hours to a patient with follicular tonsillitis which had all but closed the throat of the patient. A famous doctor from a neighboring city diagnosed the case as diphtheria. And many are the times that I have cured violent cases of chills and fever with Natrum muriaticum in twenty-four hours, and it will do it, when indicated, in any potency that I have used, from the 30th to the 100,000th.
But is not the term pace a misnomer? The speed of a remedy is usually spoken of as its pace by our writers. Is not the term pace more a matter of gait, continued, remittent, or intermittent, just as a horses gait may be a pace, trot, canter, etc.? Some horses have various gaits just as do some medicines. Then a medicines action may be violent or lethargic no matter whether continued, intermittent, or remittent.
The old school will be surprised to learn of these strange actions of individual medicines, which are to important for the homoeopath to know intimately. Is it not because of this lack of knowledge of the nature of individual medicines that our laboratories fail to establish the true value of drugs, and therefore condemn many drugs which they have thus improperly tested and discarded as worthless, as they have done with Carduus marianus ? They expect every drug to act with equal speed; they expect a drug to bring about a pathological condition in a few weeks that it has taken disease years to ultimate.
Every drug when properly proven in the higher and higher potencies is capable of affecting every cell in the body sooner or later according to its speed of action and depending on the degree of individual idiosyncrasy. As animals do not have the same nature as man, and cannot manifest subjective symptoms, they can be of little use to the homoeopath as provers. Their use in the laboratory for testing the potency of serums is atrocious and heart rending and of no value to scientific medicine-homoeopathy !.
With this introduction I will present legal evidence that homoeopathy is the science of medical healing and the medical court of last resort.
Mr J. P. was brought to Houston in an ambulance and taken to the Hermann Hospital where he was refused entrance after being examined by the surgeon in charge, who stated that it was useless to operate as patient was too weak and could live but a couple of days. A minister and friend of patient took him to the ministers home, and I was asked to do what I could for him. I found a man about fifty, emaciated, with some liver trouble which I could not determine.
A group of medicines came to mind from the general picture, from which I would have to select a remedy-Arsenicum, Chelidonium, Lycopodium, Natrum Sulphuricum, Nux Vomica, Kali carbonicum and Phosphorus. The patient was conscious but very weak; desired hot drinks, which relieved the distress in the stomach and liver. The gradual nature of progress contraindicated Arsenicum which has a rapid pace. Arsenicum, however, desires hot drinks, which relieve, but there was not the Arsenicum restlessness. So Arsenicum was ruled out. There was not the time aggravation nor the distension of Lycopodium so it was ruled out as was Kali carbonicum. Nux vomica disposition and chilliness was lacking. Chelidonium, Natrum sulph. and Phosphorus remained.
The last two mentioned medicines desire cold drinks, so Chelidonium alone remained to cover the general nature of complaint; but the patient did not have the yellow jaundice nor the characteristic pain under right scapula. However, it did include all the generals. So, in this case we arrived at the remedy by the elimination method, which is not possible unless the student knows his materia medica. Hahnemann frequently used this elimination method. His extensive knowledge of contraindications made this possible.
The patient received one dose of Chelidonium 3M (Jenichen) and it gave him the first comfort in several weeks and a refreshing nights rest. He was able to return home in ten days with gradual but steady improvement. A second dose of the 3M potency again aroused reaction. After three weeks the 50M (Skinner) completed the treatment and he has required no further medication in five years.
Mr L. F. S.,age 52, weight198 pounds. Pain in region of the gall-bladder and in the stomach. Much vomiting. Great distress and pain across the stomach, relieved by hot drinks (never could drink cold drinks in his life). Could lie only on back providing he was propped up by several pillows. Could not get his breath if he lay flat in bed, and much worse lying on left side. Chelidonium 3M gave decided relief by evening and he was able to lie normally in bed and had a rapid recovery. In several days was able to be about his business. There was a slight return twice of trouble at about five week intervals, but he responded to the higher potencies and has remained well the past three years, with no further medication-only three doses of remedy.
Mrs. X., a brunette married woman without issue, thirty years of age, weighing 120 pounds-rather plump for the height. Case one of impacted gall-bladder with abdomen so distended she appeared as though seven months pregnant. A prominent surgeon was called in consultation but said she would surely die on the operating table. I wired Dr. Kent stating the case with the lone symptom of “moderate thirst for cold water-not ice water”. In reply was told to give one dose of Natrum sulphuricum 500 potency and repeat in two hours. She was relieved decidedly shortly after the second dose, and had a prompt recovery with no further medication and after three weeks she was attending to her household duties.
A feature of this cure was the enormous quantities of turbid urine passed following the remedy. It has the appearance of stale beer of a greenish cast and looked as if mixed with corn meal. It was astonishing to me how nature, under the stimulus of the homoeopathic remedy, absorbed the contents of that cyst and sent it through the blood stream to be eliminated by the kidneys, and then repaired the damaged tissues. What is this subconscious intelligence behind it all? What is the source of this occult phenomena? Is it any wonder that the pure in heart worship God?.
Mr. E.D.H., president of a large publishing house, never had any respect for homoeopathy until his young son was abandoned by his old school physician who said, “We have done all that can be done.” The child was three years old and had digestive disturbances. The entire digestive system from mouth to rectum seemed affected with ulcers which abscessed about anus externally. He was but a skeleton, a pitiful sight to see. He was in a state of coma when I first saw him. But let the father tell the story in a letter sent to a mutual friend. “To me the homoeopathic method of treating disease with sugar powders was the most absurd doctoring and impossible of any curative virtue, so it was in utter abandonment that I let my wife call in a homoeopath for my son after repeated urgings of a neighbor friend.
It was about 8 p.m. when the homoeopathic physician arrived and asked some fool questions, after which he dissolved a few pellets of what appeared to be sugar in a half glass of water. He told me to give a teaspoonful every half hour and to continue doing so until my son showed signs of awakening and then cease giving the medicine. I knew it was hopeless as the boy was expected to die any minute; in fact, Mrs. L., a friend of my wife, left the house, afterwards saying she could not bear to see him die.
My wife was much exhausted from night watching and constant care, for she would not trust him to the care of a trained nurse nor anyone else, but I prevailed on her to retire, telling her I would stay with the boy and give the medicine, which I did until about eleven – when I fell asleep, dead to the outside world. It was daylight when I awakened and felt the terrible remorse of my negligence and of letting my child die like that, but imagine me being greeted with a weak, Hello, Daddy, as I approached my boys bed. What a thrill! I asked Doctor Schwartz on his arrival that morning what he had given and he replied, Oh, just a little weak chamomile tea. ” (Chamomilla 200 B. & T.). The boy had a rapid recovery and is now a health grown man.
Mr. T.E.W., age 35, weight 140. I was called in consultation to an interior town where I found patient in private hospital, well managed. The case was one of septicaemia following pneumonia with pleuritic effusion. The septic serum was surgically drained several days previously from right chest, from which a very offensive discharge still gurgled out at every respiration. The patient was cyanotic and in a comatose state. The surgeon and attending physician said there was no hope for his recovery and that if homoeopathy could save him I should by all means prescribe a homoeopathic remedy.
The stench was so fearful that even with the windows and door open for ventilation the nurse had to be relieved every little while. We are told that the odorous discharge is not so dangerous as the non-odorous-which must be terrible indeed. However, I recalled a similar odor in an operated case of psoas abscess which recovered under Calcarea carbonicum. I gave this patient one dose of Calcarea, 500 potency (B. 7 T.). This was about 5 p.m. The next morning at 8 when I returned there was no change, so I gave one dose of Natrum sulphuricum, 200, which I repeated at 10 a.m. At 3 p.m., when I returned with the brother, the patient recognized his brother and sister. From this time he had a steady but slow recovery.
After a month he was taken home and continued on the Natrum sulphuricum at about five-week intervals in an ascending series of potencies. He is a farmer and has enjoyed good health now for three years. It would be interesting to know whether the Calcarea established a basis for the Natrum sulphuricum to act on or whether the Natrum sulphuricum did the work alone. I gave him the latter because he looked like a liver patient to me. I believe the Sulphur salt alone did the work.
Miss Adeline P. was brought to my office in a rolling chair unable to use her lower limbs and she did not have much use of her arms. She had had various electrical, medical, and mechano- therapeutic treatments without benefit. I found her an extremely sensitive, nervous Natrum muriaticum type of girl, age 20, a thin brunette. A history of fright influenced me in selecting Opium 23M (Finke). Within two months she was able to walk to my office. A second dose of the same potency was followed a month later by Natrum muriaticum, which I gave in an ascending series over a year of continuous treatment to build up her constitution. The treatment was somewhat empirical but not without some basis. At any rate she was able to continue her violin studies after being restored as a worthy member of society.
Miss X., well nourished brunette, age 20, inclined to be corpulent, but now extremely emaciated after two months of suffering in the hospital from which she had returned two weeks prior to my attendance. This was a case of septic rheumatism. Suffering terribly. Very tearful. Left knee badly swollen and ankylosed. The skin over the knee was a light mahogany color and dappled. The discoloration may have been due to light treatments for “she had all done that was possible for her” by her various experts who attended her at the hospital. Temperature of 103. Knee as sensitive Lachesis and Arnica, which remedies have no relation to sycosis.
So sensitive to touch that it was only with great difficulty that the bed linen could be changed. The prognosis of all physicians was unfavorable. Medorrhinum 10M (Kent) gave her the first nights comfort and sleep she had in many weeks. She gained rapidly so that she was able to come to office after four weeks. A slight return of pain in the knee and a return of the discharge called for a second dose of Medorrhinum. She has had no further treatment now for two years. The ankylosis did not respond to the remedy.
Dr. Z., age 25, weight 160. History of gonorrhoea suppressed by injections the summer previously. No apparent discomfort for a year until, when overheated, he jumped into the river for a swim, after which he sat on the bank for an hour. The result was, that the following day he had inflammatory rheumatism in both feet and ankles, which has now continued six months in spite of much treatment by various faculty professors. They left him on crutches. Or rather, he left them. Two doses of Medorrhinum, six weeks apart, entirely restored him to health and he has had no further trouble the past thirty years. A feature of this case was that there was no apparent relief from first dose, but quick relief and cure after a second dose. The discharge was never re- established however.
Mr. T.A. tall, lanky brunette, age 30, much emaciated since septic rheumatism had made him a cripple on crutches. Had professors from colleges both in Philadelphia and Chicago treat him without benefit. He was advised to seek a milder climate, so he came to Houston two years ago. Medorrhinum 10M, twice repeated two months apart, enabled him to follow his profession, and one dose of same remedy in 50M potency (Kent) completed the cure.
Mr. W., a heavy set, well nourished, dark-complexioned, intelligent Austrian. History of suppressed chancre twenty years ago. Frequent attacks of so-called rheumatism. A neuritis particularly in middle of left thigh. Spent thousands of dollars for various hospital treatments. I was called to the house to lance an extremely painful and swollen gland in the left inguinal region that had to balanced every few years. Inflammation in solved the surrounding tissue so that he could not use his left thigh without great distress. He was in bed.
I gave him one dose of Mercurious iodatus ruber 500 potency (B. & T.). The next morning he came to my office in perfect comfort but anxious, opening the conversation with the question, “What kind of damn dope was that you gave me last night?” To which question I replied, “What makes you think it was dope?” He answered, “I was in bed for two days suffering without relief and then half hour after you gave me that powder last night I was able to join a card party at my home. My friends said it must be powerful dope that you gave me.” He was able to straighten out his leg and sit in a card game without inconvenience. I then asked him if he had ever taken “dope.” He replied that frequently he had been given morphine for pain.
Then I asked, “Do you feel dopey this morning as you usually do when you have taken morphine?” and he replied, “No, I feel fine, but how can it act so quickly if it isnt dope?” The began the homoeopathys usual task of instructing the patient in homoeopathic principle – a job that the American Institute of Homoeopathy should do for the laity, a job the Texas Homoeopathic Medical Association should take to heart. We need publicity. We need a campaign of education to checkmate the fallacies of our college biologists and A. M. A. newspaper propaganda. Let us get abroad our own band wagon.
In further treatment of this case which resisted all other therapeutic measures, a question arose that has puzzled me for years, namely, Hahnemanns instruction to give an intercurrent dose of Opium in Mercury cases. I have asked many homoeopaths why, but have never had a satisfactory answer. In this case, under Mercury treatment in ascending series Mercury at time apparently ceased to benefit so that at about six months intervals severe neuritis invariably set in.
First, a spot the size of a dollar appeared in anterior middle of the left thigh and six months later in a more diffused spot posteriorly in right thigh, in each instance being persistent until I gave 23M of Opium (Finke). The relief was not sudden but gradual and entirely gone in about twelve hours in each instance. Then Mercury would again take up the cure. How did Hahnemann determine the Opium prescription? Was it because Opium brings about a state of inertia that it will cure inertia?.
I once had a similar condition develop while treating a case of annual hay-fever which responded to Arsenicum. It returned in milder form the following September when it again responded to Arsenicum, but indiscreetly I gave the patient a two-dram bottle of Arsenicum 30th potency (B. & T.) – because she wanted it – to be taken only when necessary. (In hay-fever I usually find it necessary to repeat the dose in about five days). The patient thought it necessary to take it repeatedly, numerous times daily, which she did until the bottle was empty – evidently on the theory that if one dose was good a bottle was empty – evidently on the theory that if one dose was good a bottle of it would be a “knock-out”.
After a week she was seized with a violent burning pain in a spot the size of a dollar posteriorly to left hip joint. This continued for nearly a week and she could find relief only by standing or walking. Worse sitting or lying. I could not see the indicated remedy. Finally, I thought of Hahnemanns prescription of Opium as an intercurrent in Mercury cases, so why not try it in this Arsenicum case as an intercurrent – or was it an antidote, for it gave prompt relief and no return of pain. Now the question arises as to where I should record the cured clinical symptom? Under the provings of Arsenicum or under Opium? I made the notation under both medicines.