FINDING THE REMEDY. This fact suggests vividly the power of potentized drugs. Hecla lava in sheep causes immense exostoses (bony tumors) on the jaws. In cows, post-mortem examinations showed the intestines filled with ashes, hardened to a mass, as well as other, grossly pathological, lethal effects. It has remained for homoeopathy to use this knowledge for the benefit of mankind.

Homoeopathy is regarded, at least by the homoeopathic profession, as a science and an art. In its practice we are more concerned with the latter in our efforts to relieve and, if possible, cure the sick. In the earliest days of homoeopathic practice, in the days of Hahnemann and his followers, with the increasing number of remedies subjected to proving and, consequently, the growth of the homoeopathic materia medica, finding the remedy became increasingly difficult. As a result, indices, designated as repertories, were created by such men as von Boenninghausen and Jahr. A repertory is literally a storehouse, a treasury or a repository.

The repertories which have been constructed by homoeopathic physicians ever since Hahnemanns time are numerous as well as varied. Some of them have been mere compilations of the symptoms taken from other repertories and many, which are of much practical value, relate to special conditions of illness. Among the latter we have such valuable works as The Homoeopathic Therapeutics of Diarrhoea, written by Dr. James B. Bell in 1869 and published by Boericke and Tafel in 1870. A second edition followed after a lapse of twelve years, edited by Dr. Bells successor, Dr. W. T. Laird of Augusta, Maine. William P. Wesselhoeft, Adolph Lippe and E.A. Farrington aided in the work. A third edition was published by Dr. Bell in 1888, with additions of other remedies and observations by such well-known physicians as Samuel A. Kimball, J.G. Allen and William Jefferson Guernsey. The third is the last edition published.

In addition to the above named repertories there have been many others of a special nature and of the general repertories the most valuable of all is undoubtedly that of James Tyler Kent, to which the more able and outstanding Hahnemannians of his day contributed. Both von Boenninghausen and Kent are designed for repertorial analysis and, as a pre-requisite to their use, case- taking is of the highest importance; unless this is done, these repertories have little practical value. It has been said, and with much justification, that a case well taken is a case half cured. Case-taking is in itself an art and one which requires patience, understanding and good judgment on the part of the physician. Its methods are quite different from those of the diagnostician and frequently require the subtleties of a cross- examining lawyer.

Patients differ in their intelligence and in their understanding of homoeopathy and the presence or absence of these qualities must be kept in mind by the prescribing physician. Broadly considered, where symptoms are expressive of pathological states, they are of little value yet, nevertheless, must be considered, more especially with reference to the question of curability or its opposite. Thus, it is readily understood that any repertory must be used with intelligence and understanding.

It is likely that the majority of homoeopathic physicians do not resort to the repertory, largely for the reason that so many are engaged in the numerous specialities and also for lack of time. It takes time to complete a repertorial analysis, even if a card-index repertory such as that of Field or Boger is employed. But these, also, depend upon accurate taking of the case. To some, Boenninghausens repertory gives the best results in the search for the elusive similimum, but comparatively few physicians know how to use it.

No matter which method of arriving at the truly indicated remedy is employed, it makes little difference, just so that we are successful in curing the patient; many a case can be prescribed for without any reference to the repertory and this is especially true when we are dealing with an acute case, in which, as a rule, the symptoms stand out boldly, speaking, as it were, the language of the sick man.

Our provings have done this too, but perhaps unfortunately, have been cut up into anatomical sections which are likely to be confusing. How the individual becomes and grows sick corresponds quite naturally to the sickened prover and both pictures are likely to be similar. If we always knew these pictures, we would be better off. With the acute remedies we are very likely well acquainted, knowing their symptom pictures so well. But with the chronic case the matter is not so simple.

Other methods of finding the remedy have been evolved and are of a mechanical nature, such as the Emanometer of Dr. William E. Boyd of Glasgow, Scotland, whose successful results with the Emanometer have been acknowledged by Lord Horder and other members of the British Medical Association. In our own country are a number of homoeopathic physicians who have used and are using specimens of dried blood with their electronic devices to find the needful remedy in any given case.

Rabe R F
Dr Rudolph Frederick RABE (1872-1952)
American Homeopathy Doctor.
Rabe graduated from the New York Homeopathic Medical College and trained under Timothy Field Allen and William Tod Helmuth.

Rabe was President of the International Hahnemannian Association, editor in chief of the Homeopathic Recorder, and he wrote Medical Therapeutics for daily reference. Rabe was Dean and Professor of Homeopathic Therapeutics at the New York Homeopathic Medical College.