Dynamic specific symptoms are those that manifest the particular and elective action of each remedy given to a healthy man and not in massive doses and that furnish a symptomatic scheme that allows us to distinguish clearly the pharmacodynamic effect of each one of them.

Homoeopathy is based only upon experience: it wants to be judged by results. If you wish to obtain the same success imitate me frankly and loyally.–HAHNEMANN.

Before developing the subjects of Hahnemannian proving, one of the most solid bases upon which homoeopathic therapeutics rests, I will begin by pointing out what we shall understand as a remedy.

Since time immemorial many opinions have been emitted on this matter, but until today not all of the authors have thought in the same way. At the present time Manquat says:.

A remedy is any substance used to cure, to help the cure, to relieve or contribute to the repair of the sick organism. (Therapeutics Treated, Vol. 1, page 7, 1918.).

Remedies are substances which on being introduced into the organism develop certain energies according to their composition and state. (Cahis and Balmanya, Scientific Concept of Homoeopathy.).

Guinard affirms:.

Every remedys quality is that of producing within the protoplasm only transitory and not destructive changes with the therapeutic dose. But if these modifications are profound within the cellular elements and disturb their vitality by physical or chemical action, it is not then a remedy, it is a poison.

(Arnozan, Handbook of Therapeutics, Testut Collection, Vol. I, page 10. 1925.).

Mayoral Pardo in his Therapeutics and Pharmacodynamics says:.

A remedy is any substance which may produce neither destructive nor irreparable transitory changes in the protoplasm. (Only volume, page 10. 1940.).

And in this fashion we could continue quoting from various authors which would not bring us to any conclusion, on the other hand we are of the opinion of the founder of homoeopathy who wisely says:.

A remedy is any substance which has the property of sickening a healthy man and of curing a sick man: a remedy is distinguished from the morbid causes in that these sicken but do not cure. (Dr. Higinio G. Perez, General Pathology, page 240. 1914.).

And Dr. Leon Simon in his Lectures on Materia Medica sustained in Paris, 1894, completes this criterion as follows:.

Every remedy must fulfil three conditions:.

1. That of sickening the healthy man.

2. That of having the power of restoring the sick man to health and.

3. That of having the property of producing these double effects even when given in small doses.

The provings in the healthy man preconized by the founder of homoeopathy has been outlined by Heraclitus of Tares, from the most ancient of times, five hundred years before the Christian era, who carried it out with the intention of opposing the action of poisons.

In 1549 one of the most remarkable doctors of the Renaissance, Peter Andrew Mattoli, physician to Ferdinand I, on proving Aconitum napellus on himself, left us a brief but unfinished description of the case. Conrad Gesner, a Swiss naturalist (1516-1555) proved Eupatorium aquaticum. Daniel Sennert (1572-1637), a German philosopher and a conspicuous physician of his epoch, along with his contemporaries Baglivio, Sydenham and Hoffmann mentioned the necessity of knowing the action of remedies upon a healthy man without having carried out any real proving.

Stoerck (1731-1803) from Swabia, called the “emetics champion,” was the first in this epoch to carry out studies on toxicology and experimental pharmacology with Indian hemp, stramonium, henbane, colchicum, aconitum, conium maculatum and pulsatilla. Kratochwill makes observations about colchicum and Krapf makes known the action of ranunculus with which only obtained vesicular eruption on the skin.

The founder of homoeopathy tells us that Albert von Haller (1708-1777). an eminent Swiss physician from Bern, was the only one who pointed out the necessity of knowing the action of simple remedies upon a healthy man, in fact, in his book entitled Helvetic Pharmacopoeia, von Haller affirms:.

A remedy must be proven first upon a healthy man introducing into his organism a little dose of it without any extraneous mixture: one takes note of all affections produced by it, pulse, warmth, breathing, excretions and afterwards using as a guide the phenomena observed in a healthy man, the remedy will be proven upon a sick man.

Notwithstanding that he never did realize a proving in the real sense of the word.

Vicat (1776), in his History of Switzerlands Poisonous Plants, carried out important studies with hyoscyamus and ranunculus sceleratus. The experimental studies upon opium of John Leigh from Edinburgh (1785) with which he obtained the Harvey Prize, are indeed worthy of mention.

Finally, Adolphus Murray, a Swedish physician, published in Upsala (1793) his dissertations upon the advantages of knowing the drugs action on a healthy man and on animals, but without making any real experimental study.

Samuel Christian Frederic Hahnemann, graduated as a doctor in medicine, in August 10, 1779, in Erlanger University, baili- wick of Middle Franconia, Germany, was a very clever man, a polyglot with an encyclopedical cultivation of his mind and a deep knowledge of chemistry, physics, botany, mineralogy, anatomy, physiology, etc., compiled wisely the experience obtained by the physicians of the tradition, coming to the conclusion that the diverse medical doctrines stated up to his epoch and the routinary practices in the clinics were only a jumble which did not aid the physician in the least to recognize the true action of the medical agents which were prescribed only empirically and ab usu in morbis, bringing about an absolute ignorance of their pharmacodynamics and therefore their erroneous application in therapeutics.

In 1796, in Hufelands Journal, there was published a work by Samuel Christian Frederic Hahnemann, entitled An Essay upon a New Principle for Discovering the Curative Power of Drugs, in which he pointed out the principles for carrying out the provings of the remedies, inspired in his own works from 1790, when he translated into German the article Cinchona Officinalis (Bark of Peru, Quina officinalis) from the Materia Medica of Cullen, a physician of the Glasgow and Edinburgh Universities and one of the medical glories of the XVIIIth. century.

Hahnemann, before the work of reference was made public, as I said, in Hufelands Journal, published in 1789 many other studies upon chemistry and pharmacy, among which are found: Instruction for Surgeons and a New Mercurial Preparation, Signs of Purity and Alteration of Drugs, a very important work On Arsenical Poisoning, its Treatment and Judicial Detection, Concerning Bile and Gall-Stones, Discovery of a New Constituent in Plumbago, Insolubility of some Metals and Their Oxides, in Caustic Ammonia, etc., etc.

All these investigations and his actuation as a physician in the Municipal Hospital at Dresden, gave the founder of homoeopathy an opportunity to cement his scientific relations with the prominent French chemist Lavoisier, meriting at the same time a brilliant opinion from the great Swedish chemist Berzelius (1779-1848) one of the founders of biological chemistry to whom is owed the nomenclature and classification of chemical compounds, the symbols of the elements, the first chemical formulas, etc., and who said: “Hahnemann, is a very distinguished chemist and a thoroughly painstaking investigator with a deep knowledge of the subject”.

In 1803, Hahnemann published his investigations On The Effects of Coffee and in 1805, he published his Fragmenta de Viribus Medicamentorum Positivis, a work in which he states the results of some remedy provings upon himself and upon his followers as well as several toxicological facts.

In 1806 he published his essay on The Medicine of Experience and in 1810, after twenty years of painstaking investigations culminated his immortal work with the publication of the Organon of Rational Healing, a work which will live everlastingly through the ages like a lighthouse which lights and guides the physician along the infinite paths of the true science of the Art of Healing.

Hahnemann, among the many works that he published in that epoch (1796-1805) and in Hufelands Journal itself, after making a strict criticism upon the knowledge of Materia Medica given out then, says emphatically.

THERE IS NO OTHER RECOURSE LEFT US THAN THAT OF PROVING THE REMEDIES UPON A HEALTHY MAN, IF IT IS NECESSARY IN OWN BODIES. The necessity of this method has been felt at all times but in spite of that has been nearly always followed in the wrong way, because the remedies have only been employed empirically and whimsically.

Later on, in his Organon of Medicine, paragraph 105, page 112 (Dudgeon, 6th. edition from the 5th German. Boericke and Tafel, 1916), textually states:.

THE SECOND POINT OF THE BUSINESS OF A TRUE PHYSICIAN RELATES TO ACQUIRING A KNOWLEDGE OF THE INSTRUMENTS INTENDED FOR THE CURE OF THE NATURAL DISEASES. INVESTIGATION THE PATHOGENETIC POWER OF THE MEDICINES, in order, when called on to cure, to be able to select from among them one, from the list of whose symptoms an artificial disease may be constructed, as similar as possible to the totality of the principal symptoms of the natural disease sought to be cured.

Hilario Luna Castro