Homoeopathic procedures are especially efficacious in the treatment of mental diseases. The literature is rich in numerous abnormal mental symptoms produced by the provings on healthy subjects. So perfectly are the moral, mental and physical states of patients linked up together by homoeopathic methods of study that the underlying disease causes involved are more certain of being removed than by other less thorough or scientific methods. A few cases will illustrate the powerful curative agents abounding in the archives of homoeopathy.
CASE 1. Mrs. A. H. J., age 68. Mental trouble came on rather fast, almost like a shock; began with insomnia and a general run- down state. This patient had been an active church worker for forty years.
Memory poor; time seems too long. Complained of very depressive mental states which she accounted for by so-called evil thoughts of a tormenting feeling of guilt. Lascivious thoughts forced themselves before her with obscene visions — these things very contrary to her real life and nature. Impulses to kill her husband, of whom she is very fond. She was annoyed and puzzled why she should have such thoughts and impulses because she had been a pious and devoted worker in her church. For all this the impression came to her that there was no forgiveness and that she could no longer pray.
A quick repertorial analysis of this case gleaned by four major general groups of mentals reveals the closely associated remedies needed:.
RELIGIOUS AFFECTIONS INCLUDING ANXIETY, DESPAIR, etc.: Arg. n., Ars., Bell., Calc., Carb. v., Cham., Chel., Graph., HYOS., Ign., Kali bi., LACH., LITH. T., Lyc., Med., Meli., Mez., Plat., Psor., Puls., Sep., Stram., SULPH., VERAT., ZINC.
LASCIVIOUS THOUGHTS, WHICH ARE CONTRARY TO THE PATIENTS LIFE AND NATURE AND ARE ABHORRENT EVEN IN HER SICK STATE: Calc., Graph., HYOS., LACH., LITH. T., PLAT., Puls., Sep., Stram., Verat.
DESIRES TO KILL: HYOS., Stram.
TO KILL HUSBAND OF WHOM SHE IS FOND: Merc., Nux V., Plat.
PERSISTENT THOUGHTS: Stram.
The complementary second remedy needed to clear the case was Lachesis, which ran pretty well through the first study. The mental symptoms were entirely removed by Stram., Lachesis later followed by Carbo veg. for incidental physical ailments that developed after.
This patient remains well today. The very good homoeopath who had referred her to me had given her Sepia with some benefit for the insomnia, but with no help for the mental states.
Over a period of thirty years I have seen a number of very serious cases of insanity and mania, some of extreme violence, clear up under Stram. It is especially efficacious in puerperal mania, when indicated — and it frequently is indicated in those conditions.
Suicidal mania, especially with the impulse to jump from high places, will find its best remedy in Aurum. An interesting case of a young man whose desire to commit suicide by jumping through a window, always around the time of the full moon, is improving under Aurum met.
Another case of a highly nervous business man who has been under the strain, disappointments and hardships incident to the economic ravages of the depression, who has suffered with insomnia for months, finally elected to find a way out by hanging. His wife cut him down when he was almost gone and rushed him to the hospital where I attended him. Prior to this episode he had been given Puls., Ars. and other remedies with little help. After this he was given Aur. ars. 200, repeated at intervals of months apart, with a complete restoration of mental and physical health, and with a much better business success under the same disadvantages he had suffered before.
Another case, of a school teacher overworked and under severe strain and worry with a brother afflicted with a depressed mania. This case, sleepless, worried and profoundly depressed, received some benefit under Aurum mur. in several potencies, but made no real or permanent gain until Picric acid in the 10M. and 50 M. potencies were given. She is now stronger, happier and well, even with the same worries and responsibilities to carry.
These things show us that we need but find the one indicated medicine for the individual case, in order to restore mental health as easily and certainly as nature unassisted restores acute ailments of all sorts. Nowhere else in the realm of medicine can those afflicted with mental and so-called nervous disease be as certain of cure as that offered by homoeopathy.
DR. BELLOKOSSY: I had an exactly similar case six years ago. I gave Stramonium and Stramonium cleared him up, but five years ago the whole condition came back. I repeated Stramonium and it did not work, which proved to me that Stramonium was not this remedy but it was a similia. It helped for several years, and the second time I had to give Platinum.
DR. DIXON: We have all gone through the depression together, and all doctors, I think, have and innumerable cases of depression and melancholia and even suicidal intent from business worries not confined to the business man. It goes home and attacks the family as well, and I wonder if some of us, at least, havent overlooked a remedy that has been very efficacious in my cases, where indicated of course, and that is Actaea racemosa.
DR. HAYES: The Stramonium case reminds me of one I had some years ago, and I have often thought I would tell the Association about it. It was rather spectacular.
It was a man probably in the sixties, who had lived a long time alone with his mother who was over 100 years old at that time, and had never been out very much, was very secluded. I was called in and he was tearing around the room, right around in a circle, round and round again, legs and arms flying, and every time he passed a looking glass he would look in it and go on, and say, “My God, my God, I didnt do it. I didnt do it ! Dont let them come up here”.
I gave him a dose of Stramonium; it seemed he had a little sleep that night. I let him rest, and the next day he said, “No, I didnt do that thing. You go down, please, and tell the sheriff (he mentioned the sheriffs name) not to come up.” The next day I went up and still he was going around looking at the looking glass, but the next day I came up he went up to the looking glass and said, “I think it is going to rain today”.
DR. WAFFENSMITH: These testimonials take me back to a short time after I commenced practice. I was called in emergency to see a girl some eight or ten years of age, and when I saw her she was running around the room trying to climb up the well, in a very highly agitated state of mind. The family, of course, had reported that she was in this mental state all that night and she had evidences of exhaustion coming on, but the one symptom that I could see (and the only symptom that I got) was this incessant effort to run up the wall.
I gave her Apomorphia, one dose of the 30th, which quickly cleared up the condition.
DR. MC LAREN: The symptom of the looking glass that Dr. Hayes speaks about reminds me of going down to the maternity hospital in Ottawa with my father. There was a case down there and right opposite the womans bed was a dresser with a looking glass on it, and she would sit up in bed and glare at herself in the looking glass. Father had the glass covered with a pillow slip and he gave her Stramonium, and she was all right in a couple of days.
DR. BONNELL: While Dr. Grimmer was reading that paper I nudged Dr. Wilson, beside me, and told him I thought it was Stramonium.
Two years ago they brought a case to me similar to the case Dr. Grimmer was giving there, only mine was dissimilar in that she wanted to kill herself, she didnt want to kill her husband. She had been a very religious woman, but she had been under three “old school” mens treatments and I couldnt tell how much bromide that lady had had. She was a typical Pulsatilla patient, at first thought, but the religious symptoms and her symptoms of wanting to kill herself caused me to decide that Stramonium was the remedy.
I dont know what the experience of the other men here is, but I put that lady for three days on placebo, because I just didnt figure I was going to get any remedy with a system that was as full of bromides as this womans.
The husband watched the case very carefully. He was so interested he got a leave of absence from his work and he would be at the house every day when I made the call, and when I would be back in the office in the afternoon he came up for the first three days. He didnt know what those powders were that I was giving, but he said, “You know, I cant see a bit of improvement at all,” and I said, “Well, is she is getting any worse?” He said, “No, she is no worse than she was, she is just the same”.
The fourth morning, when I gave that Stramonium, he came to the office about six hours afterwards and he said, “I am glad you changed the remedy. There is the most remarkable change I have ever seen.” He said, “Why didnt you give that first?” and I told him I just couldnt do it.
I think Stramonium is one of the most wonderful remedies in these cases that we have.
DR. BOND: In Kents repertory there is only one rubric (there are several remedies in the rubric), “desire to commit suicide by taking poison.” I would like to hear Dr. Grimmers comment on that.
DR. GRIMMER: To answer Dr. Bonds question, sometimes when we have only one or two remedies in the rubric it is not safe to prescribe just on those. We go to the general rubric of aversion to life, or suicidal tendencies, and we get our remedy out of that big group.
If you can find the remedy in the narrow group, fine, but dont attempt to eliminate your remedy because you have only two remedies, because our remedies are undergoing further development. Even polychrest observers are finding new symptoms to add to the groups, and it is very unsafe to be led by a narrow group. Those groups should be included, if possible, and carried along; but never eliminate them or eliminate your remedy because of them; otherwise you may get into trouble.
When you have any kind of suicidal mania or intent, think of those remedies in those two big groups, suicidal tendencies or aversion to living.
Dr. Waffensmiths case of the desire to climb up a wall reminds me of a fragmentary proving of a remedy that is not in any of the books that I know about. It was introduced by Dr. Kent. It was Monkeys milk, and I gave that to a friend of mine and he did want to climb trees and wanted to climb up the wall, so you can take that for what it is worth.