Case no. 5
Mr.-; age 21. Had his first attack of malaria at the age of fifteen or so, and was treated by Allopathic physicians. Recovered after 12 or 13 days, but it was from this attack of malaria that the decline of his health began. Was used to the vices of his age (masturbation etc.) and after the shock the system had from the malaria, he began to have nocturnal emissions. Gradually both body and mind became weaker and weaker. The patient's mother happened to be an educated lady, and she stopped his education when she understood the progressive decline in his health and took him to Calcutta for treatment. First, a course of Allopathic and then a course of Ayurvedic treatment were gone through, and soon the patient began to have slow fever every evening. The fever lasted for a few hours only, and then there was remission with some perspiration. Almost simultaneously with this slow fever, there appeared a new symptom. In the morning, while leaving bed, the patient would sneeze and cough like anything, and these used to be accompanied by a flow of profuse watery discharge from the eyes and nose. During the day time, however, particularly after breakfast, there was no trace of the sneezing and coughing etc. There was a similar fit in the evening, and this also completely ceased after supper. This was pointed out by some of the physicians of the patient, as a pre-monitory symptom of phthisis. The patient's mother grew nervous, and she went out with the boy for a change. But all the change the boy was made to have did not change his health. And it was after this that a course of Homœopathic treatment by me was decided upon, and I recorded the following symptoms:-
Very weak, but he had good appetite and could eat enough. This appetite might be called even unnatural. Very much afraid of cold. Could not tolerate cold, and wanted to be wrapped up. Not much inclination for bath, but the troubles did not seem to be aggravated by bath. No good sleep, possibly due to all his worries on account of his health. Generally constipated, but had looseness too, at times. A feeling of a lump in the throat, which could be dislodged neither by swallowing nor by expectorating. This was a very annoying symptom, but nothing could be traced in the throat, by the patient, in spite of all his endeavours with the looking glass. So long as the patient did not come out of his bed room, after awaking in the morning, there was absolutely no sneezing and coughing or running of the eyes and nose; it was only when he came out in the cold, that the fit used to come on with all the vehemence. It continued almost till his bath, and after bath and breakfast, there was absolutely none of it. Did not sleep in the day. In the afternoon, there was the onset of the fever. It was accompanied by a chill and a burning sensation all over, but yet he could not uncover. The sneezing and coughing etc., began again in the afternoon at about 4 or 5, and it continued so long as he was outside. It gradually decreased when he entered into his room and it completely disappeared with his supper and as soon as he was in bed. There were some worm troubles as indicated by an itching in the rectum. Nocturnal emission at least once or twice in the week. No thirst. Mouth and throat seemed dry, and he seemed to have preference for hot water.
The above symptoms were indicating Ars. Iod. But the use of such a deep acting medicine could not be risked in this weak condition of the patient's health; and Sabadilla-200, one dose every morning, until the catarrhal symptoms abated, was prescribed. Some placebo.
1. 1. 22. The symptoms of catarrh were much less, but the fever was aggravated. This must not however be interpreted as a new symptom as it was only an unmasking of the fever that was suppressed with unhomœopathic medicines. There was not much change in the character of the fever, except that the perspiration at night was a bit more. Placebo.
14. 1. 22. Catarrhal symptoms aggravated. Sabadilla-1000, one dose every morning for three days continually, and then placebo.
27. 1. 22. The aggravation of the catarrhal symptoms was almost gone. The feeling of a lump in the throat was also gone. Placebo.
9. 2. 22. Catarrhal symptoms completely gone. Temper very irritable, appetite far more increased-decidedly unnatural. Chilliness and burning at times. Ars. Iod.-200, one dose.
20. 2. 22. Fever much less. Night sweats completely disappeared. Placebo.
8. 3. 22. Slight fever, only now and then, but not every evening, as before. Ars. Iod.-200, another dose.
No more medicine was required. The patient was cured all round. It is interesting that the nocturnal emission was also cured though none of the two medicines used had this symptom in their symptomatology.
(1) In weak and debilitated subjects, deep acting medicines, particularly in high potency should never be risked.
(2) If amongst the present symptoms in a given case, there are some such superficial but troublesome symptoms as can be controlled by ordinary acute remedies, then this should be done, before any deep acting medicine is ventured upon. This mitigates the immediate troubles of the patient to a large extent, and the use of a constitutional remedy afterwards becomes decidedly convenient.
(3) The patient indicated Ars. Iod. at once, but this must not mean that it is Ars. Iod. that was to be given after Sabadilla. The fact is that it is always the indicated remedy that should be given. If after Sabadilla, there developed indications of some other medicine than Ars. Iod., then, that would have been given.
(4) The question arises here-"Why a higher potency than 200th was not given at once in this case? And again, if a higher potency than 200th only was not given at all, most possibly, the patient was not cured completely"-Quite so; the complete cure of the patient is certainly doubtful in this case, but the fact is that there was no help. Unless symptoms are there, i.e. , unless there is a re-appearance of the whole array of symptoms on which the prescription was made, there is no ground for repeating the dose, under the laws of Homœopathy. If the re-appearance of symptoms takes place in the future, of course a repetition, and that in a higher potency will have to be made.
As to the first part of the above question, I have only to say that the weak condition of the patient did not justify the use of a potency higher than 200th. As the 200th acted well enough, it must have been correct.
(5) The great advantage of a miasmatic prescription lies in the fact that it cures the patient, and as such, all other troubles, besides those for which the patient has come to you, are also bound to be cured as a matter of course. (Vide para 5 of the remarks on case No. 4). In the present case, the nocturnal emission was cured, and if, besides this trouble, the patient had half a dozen other troubles, then these too would have been cured, even if these were not there in the symptomatology of the miasmatic remedy selected. This is Homœopathic truth, and this is the advantage of Homœopathic cure.
(6) Let me repeat that, with a view to effecting a complete cure, no repetition of higher potencies should be made unless there is a re-appearance of the array of the symptoms on which the first prescription was based.