Read before the Bureau of Clinical Medicine, I.H.A., June 18, 1948.


Some random notes on a few little use and little known remedies will be of interest if not of use. However, if homoeopathic provings could be made of them, a valuable asset to the homoeopathic Materia Medica would be obtained, with new and powerful agents of cure.

The little known remedy Oxydendron arboreum, or Sorrel or Elk Tree, grows in the rich woods of the Alleghanies. Natural order Ericaceae (tribe Andromedeae) made into a tincture of the leaves. Clinical use in dropsy, ascites and anasarca.

Clarke says Oxydendron arboreum is the only species of its genus.

There are no provings, and only one reported cure by M.E. Douglas, in a woman with a general dropsy, ascites and anasarca which dated from an attack of measles treated with iced drinks and ice applications seven months before; the urine nearly suppressed but containing little albumen; menses suppressed; great difficulty in breathing, even when sitting, lying down impossible; the skin of the legs burst in several places.

After Apocyanum and several carefully chosen remedies failed to help, Oxydendron tincture – three drams in a tumbler of water – three teaspoonfuls of the mixture every three hours were given with relief of the respiration in forty-eight hours. After ten days the patient was able to lie down in bed. In the interval, Rhus was given to combat an erysipelas of the left leg. In two months the patient was free of dropsy and felt perfectly well though much emaciated.

William Boericke mentions prostatic enlargement, vesical calculi and irritation of neck of bladder as being amenable to its action.

My experience with this remedy was in the case of a young married man, 23 years of age, who came to my office November 19, 1942 suffering with an acute diffuse nephritis which followed the extraction of a large number of infected teeth; extremities were badly swollen with considerable ascites. the only thing complained of was many dizzy headaches; blood pressure 160/90; heart sounds weak and fast, but regular; urine albuminous and loaded with granular and hyaline casts.

The general health had always been good. The patient had been treated several months before I saw him by regular physicians of the old school. There were no therapeutic symptoms; only common and diagnostic symptoms were present for the selection of the remedy. Aur. iod., Merc. Sulph., and Kali ars., all in the ten thousandth potency were given with an interval of about ten day apart. After each remedy the patient grew worse, becoming more bloated with fluid and gradually finding it harder to get his breath. After a month he was a pitiable sight, distended to abnormal proportions and unable to lie down, and finding it almost impossible to move.

Apparently this was an incurable case, but in desperation the patient consented to a test of his blood for remedy selection. Oxydendron was the only remedy in several hundred of the polarity group to which his blood belonged to come through. It was given in the two hundredth potency with most amazing and rapid improvement in the patients symptoms and well-being.

The potency was repeated in three weeks. Later several doses of the 10M were given at monthly intervals, followed by the 50M and CM potencies to complete the cure in about six months, when the patient returned to his work as a truck driver, and has remained on the job until the present time. Some three years have elapsed with the patient remaining strong and well but still considerably under weight for his height; six feet tall and weighing one hundred and thirty-five pounds.

From this brief review of this little known drug we could expect much greater things from its use by a complete homoeopathic proving.

Scrophularia nodosa is another remedy needing a complete proving to bring out tremendous powers of cure. It has specific affinity for the breast, dissipating tumors after Conium fails. The glands are markedly affected; also its action on the skin is strong. Eczema in and around the ears. Pruritus vaginae, lupoid ulceration, scrofulous swelling (Cistus), painful haemorrhoids, tubercular testes, epithelioma, nodosities in the breasts (Scirrhinum) are some of the clinical conditions in which this remedy has proved curative.

Clarkes Dictionary gives the fullest account of its uses and symptoms, but a full proving is really needed to obtain the best values inherent in this wonderful remedy.

Parthenium hysterophorus, bitter-broom, is another remedy with a fragmentary proving of which we should have a wider and more specific knowledge, to be had only by a Hahnemannian proving. Dr. W. Boericke summarizes what is known of this remedy briefly, to wit:.

A Cuban remedy for fevers, especially malarial. Increased flow of milk. Amenorrhea and general debility. Cheyne-Stokes breathing. After Quinine. Headaches extending to nose; feels swelled; pain in frontal eminence. Eyes heavy, eyeballs ache. Ringing in ears. Pain at root of nose. Aching in teeth, teeth feel on edge, or too long. Disordered vision. Tinnitus and pain in ears. Pain in left hypochondrium. Spleen affections.

Modalities: worse after sleep, sudden motion. Better after rising and walking about. Compare: China, Ceanothus, Helianthus.

In the Solanaceae group are found some of our most wonderful remedies for the cure of a wide variety of human ills. But perhaps the greatest one of this group, of which our literature has no mention, is the Solanum integri, the love apple or wild tomato, growing wild in the waste lands of Florida.

Several years ago while visiting there I procured one of the plants with its fruit and sent it to our able pharmacist and good friend, Mr. Ehrhart of Chicago, for identification and the preparation of tincture and potencies of this plant, having first tested the whole plant and fruit for its polarity and the vibratory rates of disease contained there-in.

It belongs to the negative group and corresponds to rates of malignant disease of various types such as cancer and tuberculosis, and degenerative types of disease. In the past two years I have used this remedy in potency only, 30th and higher, by means of testing it over the patients blood to ascertain its homoeopathic relation to each specific case tested.

The result in a great number of seriously ill cases have been uniformly good. The most outstanding cases were those of chronic bronchial asthma.

One very unusual case, a doctor, who had suffered for almost a lifetime and had tried all forms of medication for relief, including good homoeopathic prescribing with only occasional slight amelioration. One month after one dose of the 30th potency of Solanum integri the patient reported being almost entirely free of asthma and felt better than ever before in his life. This patient is still improving after six months and is now on the ten thousandth potency of the remedy.

Surely here is another remedy that when proved homoeopathically will be a mighty weapon in the hands of the physician to relieve and cure one of the most intractable and terrible of diseases, asthma.

We trust these rambling notes may not be too tiresome for your attention and that we may form a proving class really to bring out the great possibilities of cure which all of these remedies possess.

A. H. Grimmer
Arthur Hill Grimmer 1874-1967 graduated from the Hering Medical College (in 1906) as a pupil of James Tyler Kent and he later became his secretary, working closely with him on his repertory. He practiced in Chicago for 50 years before moving to Florida. He was also President of the American Institute for Homoeopathy.
In his book The Collected Works of Arthur Hill Grimmer, Grimmer spoke out against the fluoridation of water and vaccinations. Grimmer wrote prodigeously, Gnaphalium, Homeopathic Prophylaxis and Homeopathic Medicine and Cancer: The Philosophy and Clinical Experiences of Dr. A.H. Grimmer, M.D.