Few who call themselves homoeopaths have the courage to treat mastoiditis medicinally. Like some of the rest of the group my experience in this ailment is limited. I have had four cases in nearly forty years–actually diagnosed. One, a boy of 18 or 19 following an otitis caused by his going in swimming too soon after measles. Hepar was quiet sufficient.

In these days of frustration and lowered spiritual quality the message to the doctor telling of acute illness is often delayed until the illness has become well advanced. Otitis is one of these critical conditions and often is not seen until suppuration and spontaneous drainage has become effected or even an extension to the mastoid has resulted. This provides more opportunity for the study of these critical conditions.

With middle ear abscess the question of paracentesis will often be presented. In the absence of that degree of certainty which homoeopathic practice confers and when the suppurative focus has become fairly well developed, paracentesis may well be adopted. But the homoeopathic remedy is certain in its effects, at least more certain than anything else; it is the most important factor in most cases, the most decisive influence in the turn towards recovery.

“Spontaneous” drainage when aided or directed by the remedy is less destructive, there is less tendency to premature closure, extension is intercepted and the period of recovery in general is much shorter. Of paracentesis before a reasonable degree of suppurative development has been effected nothing good has come to my notice. Certainly it makes recovery slower and relapses and chronicity are more likely to ensue.

In the mastoid area a similar condition pertains. Here again, with the exception of some atypical cases and the positive exception of certain advanced conditions the homoeopathic remedy should, it seems to me, be the determining factor; to be given at least twenty-four hours in which to develop vital power; and twenty-four is usually enough. Even when the tympanum has not ruptured the abscess may resolve with free discharge through the nose or by sleeping into the throat; or if already ruptured there may be increased evacuation through the ear.

These terms are affirmed without being unmindful of the always difficult anatomy, of the possibility of individual anatomical peculiarity and consequent precarious pathology that may result.

With exceptions dictated by these factors and rarely by some inherent personal quality or by exceptional virulence of the infecting agent itself, the homoeopathic remedy is the best coup. Even should operation be unavoidable and the urgency extreme, the homoeopathic remedy will offer the indispensable stratagem in the game to save life.

I report an ordinary case of mastoiditis although at critical stage in which the homoeopathic remedy was the sole reliance:

Alice A., aet. 11, had had earache four days, the left first then both. Both tympani had ruptured, there was swelling and redness about the them and there was free discharge of bloody, brownish soreness; relieved by warmth; shrinking from being touched about the ears. At first the pain had wakened her frequently but during the latter twelve hours or so there had been only soreness and dull headache.

The girl had evidently became more ill, however, and there was an especially sore spot on the mastoid at a level with the orifice. She felt quite weak, as if unable to sit up. She was rather darkly flushed, dull heavy countenance, dull mentally, dozing much, the head heavy, dizziness. Noise in ears like trolley cars. Photophobia. Chilliness and heat. Thirst for cold day and night. Restless moving from midnight until morning. Sleeplessness. Temperature 102.8, pulse not recorded but I think it was relatively slow.

Lachesis 1000 was given and the child had a good night, was quite bright next morning and the discharge from both ears was considerably increased. No local treatment was used. After two weeks recovery was perfected.

Royal E S Hayes
Dr Royal Elmore Swift HAYES (1871-1952)
Born in Torrington, Litchfield, Connecticut, USA on 20 Oct 1871 to Royal Edmund Hayes and Harriet E Merriman. He had at least 4 sons and 1 daughter with Miriam Martha Phillips. He lived in Torrington, Litchfield, Connecticut, United States in 1880. He died on 20 July 1952, in Waterbury, New Haven, Connecticut, United States, at the age of 80, and was buried in Waterbury, New Haven, Connecticut, United States.