Drainage and Canalisation in Homeopathic Therapeutics



When we consider this principle of polarity, we should first of all study the laterality and know the action on the left side or on the right side of the body of all our remedies.

Then we should know the principal poles of reaction. We will take into consideration for example the action of some remedies having elective action on the liver and on the right eye; others that act on the cardiac region and on the lift peri-orbital region etc…

The poles may sometimes be multiple and in such a case we may select remedies acting simultaneously or successively on the different poles.

7. The Principle of Metastases and Drainage :

It is specially by the help of the idea of the metastases and of transfers of morbid energy that we may better understand the necessity of drainage directed according to the principle of the degradation of morbid energies.

We should know well that there often exists an antagonism between the organism considered from the general point of view and the local regions. There may exist a real opposition which may even have created the lesion, sometime together with functional and organic troubles in a given syndrome. When an organism cannot completely degrade its morbid energies after the first phase of functional troubles it causes a fire in the form of a lesion, and when the lesion is formed, there results at least temporarily in metastases and transfer of morbid energies.

In other cases when there does not still exist a lesion or that it is late to come, any kind of treatment may apparently give some results. The doctor generally believes to have cured, while he has only displaced the energy and it is the history of those patients who go from one specialist to another for being treated successively for such and such anatomical regions as some detached parts.

A cauterisation will cure rhinitis, but will cause to appear a more or less excoriating leucorrhoea for which the patient will go to consult a gynaecologist after the laryngologist.

This is often seen in practice and it should lead us to humility and prudence in our affirmations of cure. In order to understand the metastases and the transfer of morbid energies that may exist alone or under the influence of any treatment, it is necessary to study in a complete and analytical manner the elective action of each of the remedies on such and such region and on such and such tissue. It is only thus that we will be able to understand the canalisation of toxins and the canalising effects of the remedies, and these two phenomena may be studied parallelly.

When we give a principal remedy and a satellite remedy we should ask ourselves whether the satellite precedes or follows the ground remedy. If it precedes the ground remedy it canalises the action of the ground remedy as for example Nux vomica, canaliser of Sulphur on the small intestines; Aloe, a canaliser of Sulphur on the rectum etc. In this case it is said that Sulphur is the complementary of Nux vomica or Aloe.

If, on the contrary, the satellite follows the ground remedy we may recommend to a less experienced Homoeopath or to a beginner to use rather the canaliser before the canalised remedies to avoid medicinal aggravations.

The law of equilibrium also teaches us that the morbid energies should be degraded successively, progressively and by stages. In difficult cases we should treat the patient by stages. This is important. When you have in your chamber a case which embarrasses you greatly, and when the patient presents, on the same organic sphere, symptoms indicating numerous remedies, it is necessary, that you should hierarchise these symptoms in order to know what is the similimum and how you should give these remedies.

We have, as for example, a complex case that shows at the same time the symptoms of Aconite, Belladonna, Calcarea carb, Pulsatilla, Nux vomica, Lycopodium, Sulphur and Lachesis. This may happen more often than one believes. How should we treat such a case. In the first phase we may treat him with Sulphur 200, followed by Aconite 30 and Glonoin 30. Then, acting thus in a general way on the troubles caused by arterial hypertension we should treat the endocrinal troubles by Lachesis followed by the same satellite remedies. Then will come the indication of Lycopodium followed by Nux vomica and Kali bichromicum for hepato intestinal troubles and finally will come the stage of Calcarea carbonica in high dilutions, which we should precede or follow by Pulsatilla.

Here is an example in which is necessary some treatment by stages according to the successive steps in order to help the patient to go back the way which he has previously crossed, in order to arrive at the stage that Mure (Benoit) indicated to us in the form of a well-known law.

If the patient has taken ten years to arrive successively, by a more and more accentuated morbid syndrome, at the stage for which he has come to consult, he should do again in six or eight months a sketch of the way he has crossed, in which we may note that the two first months correspond to the symptoms of the two or three last years, etc. He will have even the silent intervals that he had during his long continued disease.

8. The Mode of Action of Remedies. Cohesion, Purification. Phenomenon of Shock and Counter-Shock:

If we continue to study the law of equilibrium from another point of view, we will arrive at the conception of the mode of action of the remedies, which may be, according to the cases, centripetal or centrifugal. We have already given some examples regarding the mode of action of the remedies. We have always checked the centrifugal action of Sulphur by the centripetal action of China. This is also an important point as regards the clear understanding of drainage.

We must not like some Homoeopaths, use that term haphazardly and think that when we treat a certain patient, we only drain him. Adding of new substances is generally more important from the quantitative point of view than the elimination of toxins, of which the proof is that when a patient is treated homoeopathically during a long continued disease, the patient gains weight under the influence of the treatment. All chronic patients are demineralised patients. They have lost the mineral contents of the organism and also have lost the heat or the vital force. It is necessary to repair in the organism what is destroyed and to neutralise or eliminate toxins. It is easy to understand that the centripetal or centrifugal actions of homoeopathic remedies should be well known in order to avoid dangerous aggravations. To give a high dilution of Sulphur to an oxygenoid, tubercular patient who has its symptoms may be dangerous. Of course it is true that one thus neutralises the toxins, one eliminates the toxins, but one augments the demineralisation and the patient loses weight.

On the contrary, Sulphur, may be given without any danger in high dilutions to some patients of hydrogenoid or carbonitrogenoid constitutions.

To follow with closed eyes the Law of Similars by giving a single remedy, rarely repeated, may be some-times a dangerous practice. We should not practise Homoeopathy like a trustee who applied like a simpleton a rule which he knows to the letter, but of which he does not know the meaning. It is before all necessary to understand and to act in the two senses to give back to the patient what is beneficent and at the same time to eliminate what is harmful to him. Acting thus one should arrive at the double principle of cohesion and purification.

The remedies having centrifugal actions help us to obtain elimination. The remedies having centripetal actions give us a better cohesion of the organism. Rational Homoeopathy should always lead to the conservation of the individual.

There are cases where the strict application of Unicism is not rational.

Besides, the phenomenon of shock and counter-shock as we have studied it before has equally led us to avoid the brutal action of some remedies in high dilutions and has obliged us to treat the patient by successive palliatives, avoiding the dangerous shocks. It is for this reason when the law of equilibrium is considered not only from the spatial point of view, but also from the point of view of the time, when one has well defined the multiple aspects of periodicity of Psora, one does not fail to insist on the study of the series of remedies, medicinal relations and a good canalisation.

Before closing this short study of the introduction to Drainage and Canalisation, it is necessary to show the inconveniences of Homoeopathy without drainage. Homoeopathy Without Drainage :

We should at first prove that there exists unquestionably some cases in which it is dangerous to follow blindly the law of Similars in using a single remedy and in a routine way without knowing the physiological action of the medicine applied, and without trying to check i.e., to add to that remedy its satellites and canalisers.

The few examples that we are going to give are known to be true by most modern Homoeopaths.

The first is the well-studied action of Phosphorus in tuberculosis. There does not surely exist any other remedy having in the highest degree a similitude of action than Phosphorus as regards tuberculosis of the respiratory system, specially the laryngeal tuberculosis. In this case we ought to have sure success if we apply the law of similars without understanding it well. And what do we see? There is the immense danger of applying Phosphorus repeatedly in all dilutions in a tuberculous patient, to such a point that we may, without the fear of being mistaken, say that Phosphorus should never be applied in a pulmonary or laryngeal tuberculosis.

On the contrary, some combinations of Phosphorus with other substances will be suitably replaced without danger, such as Ferrum phosphoricum, Calcarea phosphorica, which are classic and give very good results. Phosphorus iodatum or Phosphorus tri- iodatum, of which Dr. Barishac has taught us the value, are excellent in some cases of tuberculosis, without causing the dangers of Phosphorus. Phosphorus seems to be domesticated by another substance that enter in the new combination, and this is capital. Why then do we read from time to time in the American journals that some cases of pulmonary tuberculosis have been successfully treated by Phosphorus, while in Europe whenever we have treated a case of tuberculosis with Phosphorus we have got disastrous results. Another remedy which is also very dangerous in pulmonary tuberculosis is Silicea, if it is applied in high dilutions. On the contrary the same Silicea in medium or lower dilution may be very successfully applied if it is well indicated.

Still another remedy is also dangerous to apply without drainage : It is Lycopodium in hepatics. We say, without the fear of being criticised, that a high or even medium dilution of Lycopodium, as for example Lycopodium 30, may be extremely dangerous in a patient suffering from hepatic insufficiency with a tendency to cirrhosis of liver.

On the contrary, if a good drainage is effected and if the remedy is well canalised it may be given with inestimable success in subjects suffering from hepatic troubles.

In the same way Sulphur is dangerous in subjects having an unquestionable tendency to suppuration. Sulphur is the king of centrifugal remedies. Its eliminating power is uncomparable. It is a for this reason we apply it in a routine way in the beginning of the treatment of an acute case. But when a proper drainage is not effected and the action of Sulphur is not canalised, it may, in improving the general condition cause a grave suppuration, as for example it may provoke an otitis in a child suffering from bronchitis and in this case it is better to avoid the application of this remedy without having it followed or preceded by some appropriate satellite remedies.

We may say the same thing for Natrum muriaticum Natrum muriaticum may be dangerous in high dilutions in patients suffering from acute malaria. Natrum muriaticum in high dilution (200, 1000) may still be dangerous in persons suffering from chloruraemic or azotemic neuritis with retention of chloride. On the contrary the same remedy given in lower dilutions (3x or 6x) may act excellently as shown by Arnulphy.

In some pre-cancerous or cancer cases, repeated high dilutions of Thuja may be dangerous. On the contrary, the same remedy with an appropriate drainage and canalisation may be applied and will give surely some good results.

These are few examples where the application of a remedy in high dilution, without a proper drainage and canalisation, will surely give dangerous results.

The same thing may be said of Nosodes. We have very often observed dangerously aggravating action of Syphilinum in high dilution. Personally I have seen in an apoplectic patient, after the application of Syphilinum 200, the attacks became subintrant for many months. The remedy was applied without proper drainage. On the contrary this remedy may safely be given in several cases of epilepsy after many months of rational treatment.

Finally to end, every one of us knows the dangerous effects of tuberculins prescribed without proper drainage, in oxygenoid patients as well as in hydrogenoid or carbonitrogenoid patients. The application of tuberculins is one of the most important and the most delicate chapter in Homoeopathy.

There is a disease which is very frequent. It is acute or chronic cholecystitis. It cannot be cured by Homoeopathic treatment without a good and appropriate drainage.

It is very often necessary to canalise Phosphorus by Berberis, Bryonia, Ricinus, China etc… if we like to have a sure and durable amelioration. Experience shows us that when we add Isopathy with the classical Homoeopathy it is really difficult to obtain a sure treatment of immunity without having effected a drainage. This does not mean that it is always dangerous to give a single remedy in a chronic patient. We have treated a good many patients by the application of a single remedy and we have got good results. We criticise Homoeopathy only when it is not practised with a clear idea of Drainage and Canalisation and only when it is not keeping pace with the modern clinic and pathological knowledge. The unicist Homoeopathic therapeutic and the clinic are at variance because when we examine a patient and make a serious diagnosis, it is not possible to build the bridge between the clinical and medical diagnosis if we administers as a rule a single remedy rarely repeated. Knowledge does not necessarily give power, out the power in therapeutics can not exist without the science of pathology.

We may say besides that the great unicist Homoeopaths, admired as therapeutists, have sometimes shown themselves as deplorable clinicians and it is not permitted, as it is still said sometimes, to publish some case records that are self- evidently cured by Homoeopathy without all the necessary proofs for their support. Thus some Homoeopaths pretend that they have cured with Bryonia and Apis for example, applied alone and never repeated, some cases of tuberculous meningitis, naturally without lumbar puncture; acting thus we give sufficient ground to the official school of medicine to criticise us seriously. Conclusion :

In conclusion we affirm that the practice of drainage and of canalisation helps to obtain a real adjustment of Homoeopathy with clinic, pathology and laboratory practice. The practice of drainage and canalisation leads necessarily to pluralism and even to some points to complexism. It is for this reason that the Homoeopaths who follow unicism attack these theories so violently.

It is curious to state how difficult it is to put forward some new ideas. It is also curious to take into account that the homoeopaths who ought to become the avant-garde of the medical science have a mind as narrow as that of the officials regarding new ideas. This ought to be a humiliating lesson for us.

Generally, the slanderers of the theory of drainage speak against it without having practised it. It is not the case with us because we have always studied successively different schools of Homoeopathy, the unicist, pluralist, and the complexist, in order to find out the truth.

The Unicists, the most adverse critics of the practice of drainage may be very good homoeopaths but we say that the therapeutic results that they obtain are more slow and less complete than the results we obtain. In their arguments and criticisms there is a very curious respect for traditionalism. They are the staunch guardians of a wrongly understood Homoeopathy. But generally the critics of drainage that those who do not think like them, remain always a step inferior because they have not studied sufficiently deeply the Materia Medica. This belief is erroneous.

It is impossible to practise drainage and canalisation without a sound knowledge of Materia Medica and the relations of remedies. We do not believe ourselves to be at fault in supporting the serious and justified principles of Drainage and of Canalisation, because it will lead to an immense progress in the art of therapeutics.

(This article is translated fully, excepting a few lines, from L’ Homoeopathic Moderne, 2nd, year, No.2, 15 January, 1934).

Mauritius Fortier-Bernoville
Mauritius (Maurice) Fortier Bernoville 1896 – 1939 MD was a French orthodox physician who converted to homeopathy to become the Chief editor of L’Homeopathie Moderne (founded in 1932; ceased publication in 1940), one of the founders of the Laboratoire Homeopathiques Modernes, and the founder of the Institut National Homeopathique Francais.

Bernoville was a major lecturer in homeopathy, and he was active in Liga Medicorum Homeopathica Internationalis, and a founder of the le Syndicat national des médecins homœopathes français in 1932, and a member of the French Society of Homeopathy, and the Society of Homeopathy in the Rhone.

Fortier-Bernoville wrote several books, including Une etude sur Phosphorus (1930), L'Homoeopathie en Medecine Infantile (1931), his best known Comment guerir par l'Homoeopathie (1929, 1937), and an interesting work on iridology, Introduction a l'etude de l'Iridologie (1932).

With Louis-Alcime Rousseau, he wrote several booklets, including Diseases of Respiratory and Digestive Systems of Children, Diabetes Mellitus, Chronic Rheumatism, treatment of hay fever (1929), The importance of chemistry and toxicology in the indications of Phosphorus (1931), and Homeopathic Medicine for Children (1931). He also wrote several short pamphlets, including What We Must Not Do in Homoeopathy, which discusses the logistics of drainage and how to avoid aggravations.

He was an opponent of Kentian homeopathy and a proponent of drainage and artificial phylectenular autotherapy as well.