Among the Generals, the symptoms of the first grade are, if well marked, the MENTAL SYMPTOMS. These the highest rank; and a strongly marked mental symptom will always rule out any number of poorly-marked symptoms of lesser grade. (For these may never have appeared in the drug-pathogenesis-perhaps for lack of a sufficiently drastic loving; and yet, time and again, the drug will clear them up). The Mental symptoms, always provide that they are very definite and well marked, are the most important symptoms of the case.
But for the mental symptoms particularly, it is well to go constantly through the Repertory (Mind-section), and to master all that it presents; and to make cross references; sand top be sure that upon get the correct rubric; and often combine two rubrics that practically amount to the same thing, and yet do not give quite the same life of drugs.
As, for instance, aversion to company and better alone may not be quite the same thing; and yet it is often difficult to sort them. Again, worse in the dark, and fear of darkness are difficult to fix correctly in many cases; while the elements fear of robbers fear of shots-of apparitions, etc., may come in; so here you have at least four rubrics which you may come in : so here you have at least four rubrics which you may have to combine on pain of missing something.
Many of the rubrics much be considered in company, and all with intelligence and so elasticity, or there is great dander of eliminating the very drug you are in search of. And -the better you know your Repertory, the more rapid your work will be, and the better your results. Never grudge turning its pages!
Second in grade, after the mental symptoms, and his reactions to mental environment, come, if well marked, such general symptoms of the patient as his reactions, as a whole, to bodily environment:- to times and seasons, to heat and cold, to damp and dry, to storm and tempest, to position, pressure, motion, jar, touch, etc. But they have got to be in capitals or in italics in the patient as well as in the Repertory, to take this rank; or be safely used, some of them, as eliminating symptoms. (“Some of them,” because there are perhaps only half-a-dozen symptoms which it is at all safe to use in this way: and then only, of course, if strongly marked) and, once again, be sure that you have your very rubric; and if necessary combine two rubrics that work out practically as synonyms, and yet do not present quite the same list of drugs.
A doctor was driven to despair over a case of melancholia by using better for open air instead of desire for open air. The symptoms was so intensely marked that it was used without hesitation as an eliminating symptoms, ruling out Sulphur (which has desire for open air in capitals, but hardly appears in the rubric better for air), but which had every other big symptoms of the case in capitals and which promptly cured. You have got to know your Repertory from cover to cover if you are to have the best results; and you have got to use it with brains and imagination.
The third-grade General symptoms are the CRAVINGS AND AVERSIONS.But to be elevated to such rank, they must not be mere likes ad dislikes, but longings and loathings: in big types in the Repertory, and in the patient in correspondent types. anyhow!
In corresponding types everywhere and all through: and this is most important. As, for instance, if your patient is only a little restless. Ars, and Rhus, superlatively restless remedies, will, of course, by rather contra-indicated. Big types in the Repertory will never help you,. unless the symptoms are big type in the patient too. In first taking the case, it is will to very the type as you set down the symptoms; to out those poorly marked in breakers, and to underline the intensely marked symptoms; for of permanent way, are less vital to the company than the brain quality of its General manager, or the force, that will help you to match them correctly.
Then next in importance comes, in women, the MENSTRUAL STATE, i.e., general aggravation of symptoms before, during and after the menses. Of lower rank comes the question of menses early, late, and excessive-and this last of course only where there is nothing such a polypus, fibroid, menopause, to account for it.
And now, at last, you come to the PARTICULARS-the symptoms that bulk so largely for the patient, and for which he is as a matter of fact, actually consulting you. You will have taken them down first, with the utmost care and detail, listening to his story, and interrupting as little as possible; but you will consider them last;l for these symptoms are really of minor importance from your point of view (certainly in chronic cases) because they re general to the patient as a living whole, but only particular to some part of him.