In considering the many useful remedies in our materia medica, it seems to me here is one which has a one-sided reputation, and consequently a narrow field of usefulness, when it should have wide recognition of its multiphased possibilities.
We all know the characteristic discharge from mucous membranes of the bichromate of potassium, and something of its tendency to ulceration and scabby eruptions. Mere mention of the drug brings to mind the catarrhal inflammation of the eyes with its stringy discharge, the croupous conjunctivitis with its shreddy, stringy membrane; the ear discharge, thick, yellow, tenacious, sometimes drawn through a perforated membrana tympani in strings; the thick masses to tough, ropy, greenish coryza: the thick saliva; the long threads and strings pulled out of the throat, also the shreddy membrane in diphtheria; the vomiting of glairy or thicker mucus and blood; the thick mucous diarrhoea with blood; the alkaline, ropy urine or thick, white sediment;the membranous dysmenorrhoea which can be drawn out in long strings; the milk supply becoming stringy and watery; the catarrhal laryngitis and membranous croup with the sane characteristic discharges; the glutinous, stick expectoration adhering to fauces, teeth, lips and drawn out in long strings; in short the plastic exudations on any tissues.
The trouble is, many will turn to kali bich. immediately whenever these tough, stringy discharges appear, without waiting to discover whether the drug fits the whole case. Thus comes the abuse of Kali bich. It is a grand polychrest but its powers as manifested in its whole picture, are seldom fully realized.
Here, then, are some of the general characteristics:.
The Kali bich, patient is slow in reacting, he is weak, debilitated, feeble, quickly prostrated by his illness and convalescence will be long without this drug to help.
He is chilly and very sensitive to drafts, even the least bit of air, also sensitive to dampness.
He is apt to have chill, followed by fever and weakening general perspiration.
He is full of pains in many parts of the body; they are stitching pains, sometimes shooting; they wander from one part to another; frequently they appear in a small area, to be covered by ones finger or the palm of the hand.
Complaints are apt to alternate.
Some of the detailed or particular phases to help in recognizing the drug are:.
Sensation of a plug in several parts.
Sensation of twanging as of wires.
Sensation of a hair at base of tongue.
Tongue coated in irregular patches.
Blindness or half-blindness preceding headache.
Bones feel sore, bruised.
A heavy feeling in many parts.
A taste of blood during cough.
Cheesy deposits of foul odor in crypts of tonsils.
There are many symptoms to suggest syphilitic taint, for instance:.
Great debility and lack of reaction.
Mental depression,confusion, ill humor.
Ulcers found wherever an ulcer can form, indolent ulcers, eating in, sloughing, aphthous, corroding, hard edges.
Then there are some features which would seem to be markedly psoric, for example:.
Chilliness, sensitiveness to the least air.
Tendency to head colds and coughs.
Frequent vertigo and nausea.
Headache preceded by blindness.
Multitude of skin troubles burning, stinging, itching, papules, pustules, scabs which, when detached, leave raw surfaces, sometimes bleeding.
The remedy is sycotic too as shown by:
Uterine and vaginal symptoms.
Difficult pregnancies. Long-lasting gleet.
I have found Kali bich. the most useful remedy in repeated epidemics of influenza which have struck Washington in the last fifteen years. So many times have i prescribed it that have feared routine work with it and have purposely put it out of mind, trying to see definite indications for other drugs. Results being unsatisfactory, I have given Kali bich. with marked relief following its administration.
In influenza the drug shows off its tendency to sinus involvement. Here are the typical symptoms:.
Prostration from the start.
Cannot bear the least draft.
Chilliness alternating with easy perspiration.
Fever moderate, temperature inclined to be erratic.
Aching all over body as if in the bones.
Headache over the eyes, in eyeballs, extending to zygomae, jaws, teeth, ears,sometimes to neck and shoulders.
Dull,heavy aching with stitching pains.
Parts affected sore to touch.
Sensation of congestion at root of nose, over eyes and across cheeks.
Neuralgic, sharp, stitching pains here and there in very small areas.
Lachrymation, sometimes agglutination of lids.
Coryza watery, often excoriating becoming thick, tenacious, very profuse.
Smell and taste and much dulled.
Throat dry, scratchy, raw sore high on posterior wall and posterior pillars, sometimes presenting an injected appearance as of capillary congestion; uvula long, swollen, dragging on tongue.
Chest: Sense of oppression.
Cough: Dry, hacking, teasing causing great weariness preventing sleep.
Later long paroxysms bringing up the characteristic sputum.
Before the attack is over this thick dirty yellow, or greenish lumpy or stringy mucus comes easily and in quantity.
The action of the remedy is usually prompt, but, in cases under chronic treatment, the constitutional remedy shortens convalescence to a minimum. The above would would seem to show that influenza is an acute expression of underlying chronic miasms rather than a contagious disorder implanted on an otherwise healthy organism.
Altogether Kali bich, is an interesting, useful, comprehensive remedy well worth becoming a valuable member of ones daily kit. WASHINGTON,D.C.
DR.GRACE STEVENS:I think Kali bich. is more useful in acute sinusitis, inflammation of he frontal sinuses, than almost any other remedy that I know of.
DR.HEIMBACH:I heartily agree. In my town it seems at times to be almost the endemic remedy for those conditions and the patient certainly will respond when it is indicated. I usually find the right sinus more responsive to Kali bich. and Fragaria in the left side but Kali bich. also sometimes acts on the left side. If you have the characteristic discharge, you can hardly miss getting results.
I would express my experience in the last two years in influenza. For a chill, Quinine sulph, 30x. was almost the epidemic remedy, or, if it wasnt that, it was Chininum ars. 2x, or 6x, and then sometimes Bryonia, and sometimes Gelsemium, and it was amusing to me how these remedies would just alternate from month to month.
DR.MACFARLAN:Dr.Green spoke about its being an epidemic remedy in influenza. Washington, I presume, is about one hundred and fifty miles from Philadelphia. I believe in the last flu epidemic there Cuprum metallicum seemed a good remedy.
DR.SPALDING:I think that point of remedies that they have found useful in different parts of the country is useful and suggests clinical therapeutics. It is always helpful to have some remedies in mind as having been effective in a given diseases, not that you have to take one of those remedies empirically, but sometimes it is helpful to the beginners in homoeopathy, and I am impressed more and more with the fact that the membership in our organization and readers of The Recorder, are not all expert materia medicists, and are glad to learn.
DR.HARRIETT KNOTT:I am from Michigan and it seems to me I use Gelsemium more than any other remedy, but not one has mentioned one remedy that is very useful and that is Sticta pulmonaria. I have had several cases that came to me after being to the specialists, and nothing seemed to relieve them. Sticta Pulmonaria worked in every instance, and they were cured of their trouble.
CHAIRMAN SPALDING:We have the following mentioned:.
Cuprum metallicum, Kali bich., Quinine sulph., China ars,. Bryonia, Gelsemium, Sticta Pulmonaria, Sanguinaria, Nux vomica, Pulsatilla, Phosphorus, Ferrum phos, Aconite, Baptisia.
DR.BENTHACK: Influenza has been mentioned and I Kali cynatum is a remedy when you are pretty nearly at sealevel, and when you are up at the altitude of Nebraska, Ferrum phos, or Calcium. If you read the pulse, not count them, you will get there Ferrum phos. You get a Calcium phos. when you get across the water; where you get more robust-looking people, you get the Aconite pulse, Keep that in mind.
DR.BOGER:I want to speak a word in favor of Ferrum phos. also, in the languid cases, of which we have so many, in grippe and in influenza. It is the prime remedy. You sit around and ache and dont know what is the matter with you except you are simply languid, not much fever, and the case doesnt seem to move very rapidly one way or another.
DR.JULIA M.GREEN:The discussion of this paper has done exactly what I wanted it to do, brought out epidemic remedies in influenza in different parts of the county. I purposely put in the word “Washington” to show the location and the low altitude.
When I studied medicine in Boston, we heard a great deal about using Aconite. In Washington we dont need it. We need Bryonia and Gelsemium. I mentioned Kali bich, as an epidemic remedy in influenza in some letter of former paper, and I have had inquiries from different pars of the United states about it, and also from India, to find out what kind of preparation States about it, and also from India, to find out what kind of preparation I used that was so successful. It amused me, because the people probably who sent in such question would not need Kali bich. Then a description that I might send them of that, if put down as the one remedy to be used by them for influenza because Dr.Green was successful with it, would bring only disappointment.
The great therapeutic law of similia similibus curantur was not a discovery of Hahnemanns and never claimed by him. It was known to Hippocrates, Van Helmont, Stork,. Paracelsus and many of the Old Fathers in allopathy, but the knowledge of it did not profit them, and could not have profited Hahnemann, without the brilliant discovery of dynamization. Take away the knowledge of Dynamics from the profession, and the great Law of Therapeutics would remain as it did from the days of Hippocrates, until the discovery of dynamization, a useless law, because of the danger of its application; and Homoeopathy would have no existence, because it would have no basis on which to rest-J.T.TEMPLE, M.D., 1967.