Under date of April 29 last we were called to attend to a young man, F.V., 16 years of age, presenting a symptomatic picture which we noted as follows: Headache, pain in the back, epigastrium and in general all over his body ; pain in the right iliac fossa and gurgling sounds upon pressure ; temperature of 40 C. ; eyes, as well as throat, somewhat red ; excrement in black balls ; round red spots all over the thorax and abdomen, which disappear slowly when pressing with a finger ; uncomfortable, sensation as of a hard bed ; desire for refreshing drinks all the time ; nosebleed from the right side yesterday in the morning and evening.
F.V. started feeling sick on the 24th, that is five days ago :exanthema appeared today and in spite of several prescriptions there has been no relief.
We prescribed a strict diet on fruit juices or milk and, intending to make a careful study of the case-we face one typhus prescribed for the time being Bapt. 12 x., Bry. 7c. and Rhus tox. 8c., to take six pills every hour, in alternate doses.
Notice to the Department of Health is given, which, if it were not compulsory, we would gladly omit, as it often happens that the inspectors make adverse comments regarding homoeopathy, going too far when visiting patients.
When rather quiet at our office, we become aware that the relationship between the prescribed medicines and the symptoms of our patient are almost nil, consequently, disappointed, we lose all hope of the effectiveness of the same. It is true that Bapt. as well as Bry. and Rhus tox. are medicines which are usually prescribed for typhoid fever, paratyphoid and typhus, but it is also true that in none of the three instances is the urge for refreshing drinks and the excrement is not in balls. They give a sensation of hard bed, however ; there is black evacuation only in Bry. ; and constipation and red eyes are only found in Rhus tox., but not in Bapt.
We also find that Ars., Phos. and even more so Verat. do cover the symptoms of our patient thoroughly, and we plan to give the more appropriate one on our next call to the patient.
At the next call we find that, notwithstanding our doubts, the boy as well as his family say that he is better, although the craving for refreshing drinks still persists and he complains of the feeling that his bowels are about to move, but they do not ; he feels like lying on his back with his extremities extended ; he was restless at night, asking to be removed from his bed ; his left nostril bled when blowing his nose ; the fever goes up and down during the night ; 39.2 C. at 9:30 a.m.
This symptomatic picture makes up think of Puls. and preferably of Ars., but as the patient and his family insist that in spite of everything he is better, we decide to keep alternately Bapt., Bry. and Rhus tox., though willing to change them on any indication.
In the afternoon of the same day we are informed that the patient is suffering from a bad haemorrhage from the left nostril which has not been checked even with tamponage. We order stopped the administration of the medicines previously prescribed and to be given Puls. 5c. every fifteen minutes. The haemorrhage is stopped, but shortly after it comes on again more alarmingly and as Puls. is not effective any more we decide on alternate doses of Ars. 4c. and Calc. 12x. The epistaxis has been checked for the second time, and consequently encouraged by the same, we prescribed, the following day, Ars. 4c., Phos. 12x. and Calc. 12x. in alternates doses every hour, but after twenty-four we could find no improvement whatsoever.
Under said conditions time passes and it the third of May. The patient wept all night, was startled and very restless, with temperature of 39 to 40 C., and seeing faces ; when he is asked a question he replies to something else ; he requested another bed because his was too hard ; the constipation continues ; he wants no bed covers ; pains all over continue, including headache ; worse at night ; he still lies on his back and he wants to sleep but he is unable to ; he cries for something to let him sleep.
In view of the fact that we have not only been unable to find something to better our patients condition, but he is worse, we decide to make a more close and through examination :.
DELUSIONS, SEEING FACES :.
Ambr., Apis, Arg. n., Ars., Aur., BELL., Calc., Calc. sil., Cann. i., Carb. v., Caust., Cham., Cupr., Lac c., Laur., Med., Merc., Nux v., Op., Phos., Samb., Stry., Sulph., Tarent.
INCOHERENT ANSWERS :.
Bell., Cann.i., Chlol., Coff.t., Cycl., Hyos., Phos., Valer.
WEEPING AT NIGHT, among the medicines listed first : Ars., Aur., Bell., Calc., Carb.an., Caust., Cham., Lac.c., Merc., Nux.v., Op., Phos., Sulph., Tarent.
ARS., Aur., BELL., CALC., Carb.an., Caust., Cham., Lac.c., MERC., Nux v., Op., Phos., SULPH., TARENT.
ARS., BELL., CALC., Caust., CHAM., Lac c., Merc., Nux v., Op., Phos., Sulph.
ARS., BELL., CALC., Caust., CHAM., Lac c., MERC., NUX V., OP., PHOS., SULPH.
BECOMING WORSE AT NIGHT :.
ARS., Bell., CALC., Caust., CHAM., Lac c., MERC., Nux v., Op., PHOS., SULPH.
BETTER LYING ON HIS BACK :.
Bell., CALC., Caust., Merc., Nux v., Phos., Sulph.
SENSATION OF HARD BED:.
Ars., Caust., Merc., Nux v., Op., Phos., Sulph.
CRAVING FOR REFRESHING DRINKS :.
Ars., Calc., Caust., Phos.
DESIRE TO BE UNCOVERED :.
Ars., Calc., Cham., OP., Phos., Sulph.
ARS., CALC., CAUST., Merc., NUX V., OP., PHOS., SULPH.
If we discard the medicines which cover less than 10 of the above mentioned symptoms, what we obtain from aforesaid examinations is that Ars. has 10 with a value of 23 points ; Calc. 10 value of 22 and Sulph. 10 with value of 21.
It seems that Ars. is more in line with the symptomatic picture of this patient but has no incoherent answers (the same in Calc., Caust. and Sulph.) as well as the improvement by lying on his back. In Calc. there is no sensation of hardness of bed, in Caust. no desire to be uncovered, and in Sulph. no craving for refreshing drinks. Phos. is the only medicine which covers the whole symptoms and, after consulting the pure materia medica, we can prove that the similarity cannot be more complete.
There pills of Phos. 30c., dissolved in half a glass of water, to take a teaspoonful every hour, result in a notable improvement, beginning with the disappearance of delusions, being able to sleep a little and decreased moral sensibility of the patient. To the satisfaction of everybody concerned, the improvement continued without interruption to the point of complete recovery of his health, only by having taken four teaspoonfuls of said remedy.
On May 4, that is five days after we gave notice of this case a physician and nurse were sent by the Department of Health to take blood for the Widal. Weil-Felix and Huddlesson reactions. On the 6th of the same month, as a matter of curiosity, we investigated on the Weil-Felix reaction and found that it was classified as “positive,” which was obtained by us later on, and by that time our patient was already convalescing.
In spite of everything, as is evident, this case of typhus was cured in four days, without subsequent “complications” and on the ninth day after the sickness was declared.
1. If instead of prescribing Bapt., Bry. and Rhus tox. at the time we took the case, we had treated with the indicated remedy, the difficulties would have been solved immediately, because if with Phos. given four days later the patient was cured, it would have been a quicker procedure if administered from the very beginning.
2. If instead of prescribing afterwards Ars. and Calc. and then ARs., Phos. and Calc. in low potency and alternate, we decided to give only Phos. in high potency, we would have advanced two days in the treatment.
3. That Phos. was the similimum of the case, is proven by the fact that it was the cure. Why then Phos. did not cure someone will ask-at the time it was given in low potency ? In the first place because it was probably interfered with by the action of Ars. and Calc. and second because the low potencies do not always act in the same level as the sickness.
4. Do we realize how absurd and inconsistent it is to treat with medicines which are based on the name of the sickness, instead of basing ourselves on the patients symptoms?.
5. Do we see the inconvenience of administering more than one medicament at the same time?.
6. Do you feel the absolute need and duty, as doctors, to make a thorough study of the case in order to determine the remedy and the potency required, instead of using homoeopathy unduly, alternating and mixing medicaments in low and high potencies or using preparations strange to our therapeutic system?.
“But this is very difficult !” It is often said.
“It is very difficult, no doubt,” is our answer, “but it is not impracticable. Try it, colleague ; persist and you will accomplish it with due skill”.
Experimentation on healthy human beings, not on irrationals and less on sick ones, of the substances employed as remedies (a) choice of medicine in accordance with the law of similars ; (b) single remedy ; (c) no absurd combinations of substances in different or same potencies ; and (d) minimum or optimum dose, are the four indispensable requisites which each and all homoeopathic prescriptions should fulfil and when it is forgotten, intentionally or unintentionally, and proceedings adopted are against our wise doctrine, it is only logical that the physician will go astray in the road of uncertainty, of error and of complete failure.