This remark of a regular brother who accidentally had a small degree of homoeopathic curiosity aroused provides plenty of vitamins for thought. There are so many facets for thoughtful consideration that at this time we shall have to content ourselves with a story of the doctors difficulty, the report of a few cases that might increase that difficulty were it to reach his ear, and just few comments. The remark originated in this way:.
A man had a blow on the head causing a deep dent in the skull, one in which a ladys finger could be laid. He recovered from the acute effects but severe headaches persisted. He was treated by eight or nine specialists, observed a month in the Yale Medical School some of his spinal fluid subtracted and so on. All agreed that the only possibility of cure was to substitute a silver plate for the depressed bone, to which the man would not consent.
Nothing availed and the condition grew worse over a period of four years until he fell into the hands of a lay homoeopathic prescriber. For a year and a half then he was given Phosphorus, Rhus, and Sulphur, but Phosphorus was the main remedy. Not only were the headaches cured but the dent also was effected. A few years afterward the man told the compensation doctor about his homoeopathic experience and showed him where the dent had been. The doctor examined and questioned him then ended the interview with the remark, “Homoeopathy is all right, if you can believe in it”.
There is no reason to doubt the truth of this tale and certain experiences of my own have demonstrated its reasonableness. For instance, I have seen Phosphorus (as well as other remedies) cure bony spurs, no doubt by the same process of cell change which must have taken place in the repair of this injury.
Two years ago I was called to a woman who had fallen on a stone, making a depression about two by three-quarters of an inch in area in the upper part of the frontal and parietal bones, that is, crossing the coronal suture with its long axis. It also was deep enough to lay a ladys finger in. Discount, if you prefer, the effect of Arnica which I prescribed for symptoms of concussion, but the depression was some improved within twenty- four hours and eventually was replaced by the original contour. The woman was seventy-nine years of age. Arnica-like, she insisted that she was all right and refused surgical consultation. So I had a chance to see what vital energy might do with depressed bone, whether or no medicine had any effect on the repair.
As to the doctors dilemma, the kernel of the corn that did not sprout was in the notion, and a very common one it is, that belief is sufficient for a judgment of fact. A moments consideration should convince one that the elevation of such a depression of the skull, a condition that had remained static for several years under the most regular, regulated and approved care (except the operative) and that appeared to have been restored by a method with which one was not acquainted, should be of sufficient importance to the art of medicine to receive wholesome attention. But our friend of the title did not choose to run. He probably had an operation coming at 10: 7 anyway. So this gives your writer a chance to “rub it in” by reporting a few cases of a disease said by the regular ones to be one of the incurables, viz., psoriasis.
I. Five years ago I reported to this society a case of psoriasis, principally on the hands and arms, in which the eruption, with the exception of a few small spots, disappeared after having prescribed Phleum pratense; and because the eruption had disappeared in the same direction in which it was spreading I predicted a relapse and that Sulphur would have to be used to overcome the suppressive tendency peculiar to this patient. The prediction came true. Just a year later, in the same month, the eruption swept back over its original site. Sulphur was used entire disappearance of the eruption in reverse direction and there has been no return.
II. Some years ago I had a case psoriasis which was thoroughly diffused over the entire skin except the face. The silvery patches did not exceed a silver dollar in size, being consistently annular. Lycopodium was given and in a little while the man returned jubilant for the eruption had almost disappeared. But I had misgivings because the patches, instead of healing from the edges, had healed from the center leaving his body marked with traces of rings. A little later, perhaps in a months, the entire eruption was again in full bloom. The patient was so disgusted that he refused to take any more medicine.
These two cases illustrate to the eye that which is often observed with subjective symptoms, the opposite direction of cure to that of suppression, of disease advancement or mere recovery.
III. In 1916 a young lady came in who had her acne treated assiduously with a mercury ointment. The papules had gradually assumed a squamous, circinate form, the ,lesions had enlarged and spread until a well developed psoriasis was then to be seen and of quite general distribution over the body, although worse in the usual points of election. Three prescriptions of Bacillinum during three months time cleared entirely. That prescription was based on the fact that Calcarea by another prescriber had not acted, on the circinate form and on the lack of Symptoms. Two years later it reappeared on the legs and forearms.
A higher potency of Bacillinum (1000) was used. Then the old acne reappeared on the face, chest and back; the combination had separated. Psorinum, the complement of Bacillinum, was then given and the acne disappeared but new spots of psoriasis turned up. A two and a half months session of little acute troubles ensued with Ferr. ph., Gels., Bry., and Aconite accordingly; then Bacillinum again, after which the acne returned, the psoriasis remaining the same. The patient then disappeared.
Twelve years later she returned with the psoriasis partly suppressed by x-ray treatments and by which she had been seriously burned two years previously. One prescription of Calcarea 10M., selected by classic symptoms which had at last come to the surface, cleared entirely and as I have had no news during the last two and a half years except two or three smiles on the street I take it to be good news.
IV. A man came in March, 1928, for psoriasis. The lesions were not large but general, the largest being on the outer aspect of the right leg, forearm and scalp. The only additional symptoms that I could possibly obtain were these: the systolic pressure was 190; the itching was unusually slight even for psoriasis; he had been constipated since childhood; and although he had always been well otherwise and with no acute illness, always had an anxiety about his health.
These symptoms, however, clearly suggested a combined latent influence and Mercurius vivus 1000 was given. In a month the eruption, which has been almost stationary, had become more active and there were persistent loose stools. In another month the crusts were off but the eruption was spreading with new lesions appearing besides on the scalp and thighs. Because of what had followed the Mercurius, Sulphur 200 and 1000 were prescribed twenty-four hours apart. Three weeks later the new accretions had ceased. During a year and a half a slow clearance was watched until no trace of his former troubles could be found and no return yet.
V.R.B., age 24, gave a history of boils, suppurative cervical adenitis and lumbago, Psoriasis a year. It had been supposed to be ringworm at first. On the chest the eruption had been subducted with resinol but not on the back, suggesting self treatment. The eruption was unusually reddish for psoriasis and the patient had naturally quite a pink skin. The larger patches were two or three inches in length. Some of the newer lesions were quite punctate and had yellowish crusts on the apices, although they used to lose this atypical aspect as they flattened out and spread.
The young man had a craving for sweets. Graphites 10M. Sk. was given followed by improvement for two months. Then the CM. improved for one month. Then a chill and the old lumbago was on with a bronchitis and coryza that put him in bed. Phosphorus 500 on acute symptoms and the suggestions of gracile physical lines and pinkish delicate complexion cleared up the new condition and some of the eruption. Then the acute condition started up again and bed was feared. Gelsemium 30 was given. Since that time, two and a half years, there has been nothing to record.
One can hardly treat chronic conditions successfully without acute conditions coming up. Well adapted remedies bring latent susceptibility to the surface. Then if managed correctly it shortens the process of cure. Some patients need remedies for these renovations, others do not, but the prescriber needs always to keep an eye on the devious way of the chronicity, both of egression and regression.
After all, this question as to the year or not of homoeopathy is not a question of belief or unbelief. It is a question of knowledge or unawareness. To decide one should not wait for science to catch up. Science today is in great repute but the most conclusive proofs of homoeopathic truth are not manifested by science because it has not yet been expanded to deal with the general principles that order natural forces, only with particulars. Particulars are subservient to the general.
That is why science is always getting itself bowled over by science. “Absolute” truth crumbles from being build so high on the sands of particulars and progress is always being stepped on by advance. By far the most conclusive proof of homoeopathic effect is the immediate clinical evidence, that which we observe by the day and hour, that which all who care to look may see.
The most practical work of the world is accomplished under the light of principle. Homoeopathic work is based on principle and is intensively practical. The proof is in the doing; and the doing is simply in learning how.