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HOMEOPATHY INTRODUCTORY COURSE

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LESSON 1: INTRODUCTION††† (SAMPLE ONLY)

 

Why treat your family homeopathically? Why not?!

 

An ideal treatment system for the health needs offamilies today should have the following minimal criteria:

(1)††††††††††† Effectiveness

(2)††††††† Safety

(3)††††††† Low cost

(4)††††††††††† Compatibility with "teaching hospital" level of medical care

 

How does Homeopathy shape up against this?

 

(1)††††††††††† Effectiveness: Let's face it, it's not hard to be pretty when you are the only girl in town! For the sort of things for which we normally consult our family doctors, conventional medicine has little constructive to offer beyond the exclusion of serious illness and the relief of symptoms. This includes the common cold and most viral infections of the upper airways (URTI) and chest, minor anxiety states (eg "exam nerves"), and muscular aches and pains. Realistically, what can we expect from our conventional GP in such cases? Firstly an accurate diagnosis. This is always a good move as a sudden attack of "indigestion" could in fact be the presenting symptom of a heart attack, gall stone attack, peptic ulcer or anxiety attack. As you can imagine, the treatment and outcomes of each of these examples are considerably different! At times misguided doctors, under unrealistic pressure from their patients to "do something!", prescribe inappropriate medications such as septicaemia-strength antibiotics for viral illnesses or ulcer-inducing anti-inflammatory drugs for vague aches and pains. The list goes on and on. Armed with a knowledge of basic homeopathy we need put no such pressure on our doctors to prescribe against health interests of our families. How then can homeopathy help us, as in the above examples? The only way it can act is by stimulating a specific healing response in the body. By presenting to the body a type of "vaccine" to the condition disturbing the patient's health we can cause it to react not only to the remedy but the underlying cause of the illness.

 

An example may help. Once a man came to me with the clinical picture of glandular fever (infectious monocucleosis or “mono”). Owing to the lack of typical features I performed a blood test for this as well as a throat swab, in case it turned out to be a case of strep. throat. Treatment was with homeopathic Mercury as his symptoms were those as if he had been poisoned with Mercury salts (which he hadn't). Two days later I had all the results back and they showed both strep. infection as well as glandular fever. I asked him to return urgently so I could treat the strep. infection with penicillin to prevent complications. He said he felt fine and didn't want any penicillin as he had come to me for non-antibiotic care in the first place. By way of compromise he agreed to take the penicillin if the very virulent strain of streptococcus I had isolated was still present. To my utter amazement the repeat swab, taken again by me and sent to the same lab showed no strep!! This and many other examples have convinced me, at least, that homeopathy has the capacity to not only relieve symptoms but to alter the body's specific immune response.

 

(2)††††††††††† Safety: Overdose is effectively impossible with Homeopathy. By law in Australia at least, pharmacies may only dispense dilutions of any potentially toxic drug/substance over 1: 10,000 or higher. If we use the example of Belladonna berry juice, we note that it was available till recently (without prescription) as "Donnalix". The lethal dose of this could be around 100ml, depending on the patient size. To achieve this by homeopathy, using the lowest commonly used dilution (6cH or 1:100x100x100x100x100x100) we see that the person would have to consume a volume far in excess of his or her body weight to begin to approach this dose. What's more the person would have to do it in one gulp!! "AHA!! " say the cynics, "you see, he admits there is nothing there and it's all a trick/placebo!! " Not so fast! This is not a criticism to shrug off lightly. In answering it we shall be a long way to explaining how homeopathy does work. Firstly, homeopathy has nothing to do with DOSE. It deals with the Law of Similars, that is, likes are treated with like. The dilutional steps in preparation of the remedies only serve to impart to the solvent (usually water) a "molecular memory" of the original substance obviously diluted almost to oblivion. This molecular imprint on clusters of water molecules "develops" on water molecules in the body a "positive" image from the "negative" stored on the remedy water molecules. Secondly, when all is said and done, all the fine theories around will not open a closed mind. Whenever I address a group of doctors on this subject I always take along lots of little sample packs of homeopathic Arnica, which as most of you are aware has a beneficial action in blunt injuries and sprains/strains. Out of 20 to 30 or so at each lecture there is never more than 10 who take the medical samples home and never more than 1 or 2 who actually try it. Hence these lectures to the patients themselves!!

 

(3)††††††† Low cost: The costs of preparing a remedy from gold as opposed to table salt are virtually the same in view of the microscopic quantities of the original substance in any normally utilised potency. Thus the cost of homeopathic medicine is largely a function of laboratory time in preparation of it, rather than that of the original substance. It was indeed ironic that a former senior lecturer from Sydney University came to us (the Australian Medical Faculty of Homeopathy) for instruction in homeopathy. We were all rather tickled by this and asked him why. "Well," he said “My old father, back home in central India is due to retire from his post in charge of the local hospital and asked if I would like to go home and take up his job". As the region was so poor they had no funds for western drugs so they were happy for homeopathy to continue to be used as it was so cheap and effective! A 30 ml bottle of drops can give 600 doses. At between £4 per bottle, this compares extremely well with drugs even as cheap as paracetamol (£1-2 for 10-12 doses!).

 

(4)††††††††††† Compatibility with teaching hospital level of medical care: As we are trying to build up the patient's resistance, and achieve biochemical balance (homeostasis), it seems likely that the correct administration of homeopathic medicine would lead to a more harmonious regulation of the bodily functions. This should translate into decreased needs for conventional medicines, faster wound healing with less pain etc. Indeed this is exactly what we see in clinical practice. Again an example may help. A little patient of my practice was born with a congenital deformity of her lip (hare lip). The plastic surgeon had two such cases scheduled for the same day, so there was virtually no difference in condition, operative technique etc. Our little girl had barely any visible swelling except for some at the suture line. The other child was on morphine for days, our child was breast-feeding 4 hours after the operation!! The only difference in case management was the administration of a mixture of Homeopathic medicines comprising Arnica (for blunt injury of suturing etc), and Staphysagria (for clean incision at a body opening). This was done with the permission of the surgeon who was somewhat at a loss to explain the obvious differences between the two children. Patients are not always so fortunate to have the co-operation of their hospital specialists!

As we can see, there is no incompatibility between the two styles of treatment- indeed many homeopathic doctors comfortably combine the two, using each with wisdom for the patient's benefit.

 

Definition:†††

Homeopathy is the healing art which is based on the Law of Similars ie likes are treated with like. The use of a vaccine to prevent illness caused by its related infective organism is an example of the Law of Similars.

 

Provings:††††††

These are symptoms caused in healthy volunteers by the deliberate, repeated, experimental administration of a homeopathic medicine. These have been scientifically gathered and used for over 150 years.

 

Potency:†††††

Conventional medicines work by molecules of the drug acting directly on molecules of the body's organs and other structures. The more molecules (the larger the dose), the larger the effect. Homeopathic medicines work by a "memory" of the original substance, stored on clusters of solvent water molecules, acting on the molecules of water in the body. This action is similar to the development of a photographic negative, in that the body reacts to an image of the original substance and in trying to detoxify it deals successfully with similarly acting disease processes.

 

Homeopathic Remedies:†††††††††††

These are prepared from various natural sources; animal, vegetable and mineral as well as synthetic ones including conventional drugs. The distinguishing feature of homeopathic medicines is not their origin but the method of preparation. The original substance is prepared in a water-soluble form (colloidal state) and progressive dilutions made with vigorous rhythmical agitations ("succussions") between each step. Progressive dilutions may be 1:10 (decimal dilutions), 1:100 (centesimal dilutions), or 1:50,000 (50th millesimal dilutions). As stated above, it is not the amount of the original substance which counts, but the "memory" stored on the solvent, so the details of dilution have little importance in the biological effect on the patient.

 

 

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LESSON 2: TRAUMA REMEDIES††† (SAMPLE ONLY)

 

We discussed in the first lesson the use of Arnica in bruises, injury and strain. Even mental strain from being overworked and exhausted, can be helped by Arnica although other remedies may be equally or more effective. In this last example of mental strain and Arnica, this is a mental symptom, and therefore the case would respond better, in this case, to a higher potency of Arnica, i.e. 30 or higher, as long as the rest of the case agreed.

 

(1)††††††††††† Aconite: Shock, fear, terror, especially of the fear of death, with a rapid strong pulse. If bleeding occurs, it is bright and brisk, the patient is thirsty, the condition often comes on after exposure to sudden climatic changes, such as cold dry winds or sun stroke. The patient is often in terror, worse at midnight, numbness and tingling predominate. The state responding to Aconite may be found in many situations, angina, sudden violent fevers, accidents, fainting, and emotional trauma. The use of Aconite in such cases is a good example of acute prescribing. One should give one dose of the Aconite 30 each few minutes until the case resolves. Response should be seen in an hour, usually less.

 

(2)††††††††††† Arnica: Injury to capillaries with painful bruising, corked thighs and tooth extractions, often do very well with Arnica, as do blunt injuries, sprains and strains.

 

(3)††††††† Carbo Vegetabilis: This drug of many uses (poly chrest) is indicated in this context for its role as a "corpse reviver", the patient is cold, clammy covered with cold sweat with intense air hunger, wishing to be fanned vigorously, crying "give me air!" The patient often has a severe medical illness which requires medical treatment at the same time, such as severe asthma, heart attack or haemorrhage. It is a very good remedy to give while you are waiting for the ambulance or sitting cooling your heels in Casualty. It's the sort of transfusion you are having when you are not having a transfusion.

 

(4)††††††††††† Ledum: A wonderful remedy for bites and puncture wounds especially if there is a risk of tetanus. Obviously the attending doctor would give an injection for Tetanus prophylaxis, but Ledum administered at the same time would help to cut back the pain, swelling and risk of infection. The condition requiring Ledum is often a puffy, dusky or pale extremity, such as a cat bite, which feels cold to the touch, but which does not tolerate any external heat. Only intense local cold gives relief. Obviously wound infections and so on may require antibiotic therapy on their own merits. This treatment will help it to work. Ledum can be contrasted with Arsenicum album which also has burning pains but Arsenicum is relieved by heat whereas Ledum is aggravated by heat.

 

(5)††††††††††† Hypericum: Useful both externally as an ointment or diluted tincture and internally in homeopathic potency in injuries to parts rich in sensory nerves and nervous tissue in general e.g. finger tip crush injuries, puncture wounds (as in Ledum) but when the pain is shooting up along the nerve. Spinal injuries or head injuries also are helped by Hypericum while waiting for the ambulance.

 

 

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LESSON 3: INFECTIOUS DISEASES OF CHILDHOOD

(SAMPLE ONLY)

 

The common infectious diseases of childhood which we will discuss today are measles, german measles (rubella), chickenpox, mumps, whooping cough, and scarlet fever.

 

Since the widespread introduction of immunisation in early childhood against most of these diseases, the incidence, especially of whooping cough and measles, has continued to reduce. However, a significant number of people choose not to have their children immunised for various reasons, so I will discuss each illness in detail.

 

ALL REMEDIES SHOULD BE GIVEN IN THE 30c or 6c POTENCY UNLESS OTHERWISE DIRECTED.

 

MEASLES:

 

(i)††††††††††† DESCRIPTION: Measles is a highly infectious disease, transmitted by respiratory droplets, mostly affecting children between the ages of three and five years. It rarely affects children before the age of six months, as they still carry the mother's measles antibodies until that age.

 

(ii)††††††††††† INCUBATION PERIOD: This is the time lapse between the introduction of the virus into the body and the onset of symptoms. In measles it is 8-11 days.

 

(iii)††††††††††† SYMPTOMS: The usual course of symptoms is:- Days 1-3: fever, runny nose and eyes, dry cough. Days 4-6: Temperature rises and rash begins to appear. The rash is blotchy red, begins behind the ears, spreads to face, trunk and then limbs. Blotches are slightly raised above surrounding skin and may coalesce. Red runny eyes, cough and runny nose persist. Day 6 - 10: Rash begins to fade, and turn brownish and has disappeared by approximately 1 week after onset. Cough and runny nose may persist for several days after rash has gone.

 

 

(iv)††††††††††† COMPLICATIONS: Severe complications are unusual, but conjunctivitis, and middle ear infections are quite common, and some children who are prone to febrile convulsions may develop them. Occasionally, croup may develop, and rarely pneumonia. Very rarely, a child may develop measles encephalitis.

 

(v)††††††††††† HOMEOPATHIC TREATMENT:

††††††††††† a)††††††††††† ACUTE DISEASE -

††††††††††† ††††††††††† 1)††††††††††† ACONITE: - sudden onset of fever; red eyes and dry, barking cough.- restless, anxious and fearful.

††††††††††† ††††††††††† 2)††††††††††† BELLADONNA: - rash bright red. - skin hot and dry. - headache, drowsiness, hallucinations. Give Belladonna especially if child is prone to febrile convulsions.

††††††††††† ††††††††††† 3)††††††††††† EUPHRASIA: - streaming, burning tears. - photophobia

(hurts to look at the light). - bland runny discharge from the nose.

 

††††††††††† ††††††††††† 4)††††††††††† PULSATILLA: - much bland yellowish discharge from nose and eyes, and often loose cough. Don't use Pulsatilla if the fever is high but it may follow Aconite well if the fever has diminished. - dry mouth, but NO THIRST. - child is miserable and clingy.

††††††††††† ††††††††††† 5)††††††††††† KALI BICHROMICUM Similar to Pulsatilla picture, but worse, with yellow stringy ropy discharges from eyes and nose.

††††††††††† ††††††††††† 6)††††††††††† SULPHUR: - Use when the rash is disappearing. Is often useful in helping to clear up an acute disease. Sulphur given at this stage may often prevent complications. In general, Aconite, Euphrasia and Pulsatilla are the most commonly used remedies for measles.

 

††††††††††† b)††††††††††† COMPLICATIONS: Any complications such as persistent conjunctivitis, middle ear infection, persistent cough, or bronchitis should be seen by a doctor. However, many of the respiratory problems may be dealt with as per lesson 4, " Homeopathic Therapy of Respiratory Diseases".

 

††††††††††† c)††††††††††† PREVENTION: MORBILLINUM 30 - one dose to all contacts, or when there is an epidemic in the area.

 

GERMAN MEASLES

(RUBELLA):

 

(i)††††††††††† DESCRIPTION: This infectious disease usually has much less severe symptoms than Measles, but it is very important because of the damage it may cause to the foetus of an infected pregnant woman.

 

(ii)††††††††††† SYMPTOMS: Rubella usually begins with mild headache, slight sore throat, runny nose and fever and a fine pink rash which appears at the same time or soon after. The rash begins on the face, then spreads to trunk and limbs, and only lasts approximately 1 day in each area. Swollen lymph glands in the neck and behind the ears are common.

 

(iii)†††††† HOMEOPATHIC TREATMENT:

 

(1)††††††††††† ACONITE: see under "Measles".

(2)††††††††††† BELLADONNA: see under "Measles".

(3)††††††††††† PULSATILLA: - irritable, weepy and clingy- bland yellow discharge from the nose.

(4)††††††††††† PREVENTION: RUBELLA 30:- 1 dose to all contacts (including pregnant women) or if there is an epidemic in the area.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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LESSON 4:HOMEOPATHIC THERAPY OF RESPIRATORY DISEASES

(SAMPLE ONLY)

 

This topic is the homeopathic treatment of ear, nose, throat and respiratory diseases. Obviously this encompasses a large assortment of illnesses, both chronic and acute, and therefore I have selected some of the more common ailments to discuss, together with some of the more common homeopathic remedies. I will not deal with any chronic conditions, as these will usually require the use of more constitutional prescribing, but merely concentrate on the acute disease states.

 

As you are aware by now, homeopathic medicine endeavours to deal with each individual's symptoms rather than the disease entity itself. Therefore you will find that one disease may have many homeopathic treatments available - each used according to the principle - "Similia Similibus Curentur" - "Let likes be treated by like". Therefore the homeopathic physician or user, has an array of possible remedies available for each case, unlike the orthodox adherent.

 

This of course makes homeopathic prescribing far more difficult and I have attempted to simplify this for you by concentrating on a few of the better known remedies. However, this also means that not all conditions will respond to these remedies alone and you may well have to consult with a homeopathic physician or a repertory if symptoms do not fit into a common remedy.

 

Firstly ears - notably EARACHES. Earaches, would probably account for about 10% of G.P. consultations and are a prime concern to most parents. There are several homeopathic remedies which are invaluable in these situations, the main four being - Aconite, Belladonna, Chamomilla, Arnica and Hepar sulph.

 

ACONITE is for the sudden earache, day or night often coming on after a severe chill. The pain is aching, worse with cold and better with heat locally. The patient also usually has a hot red external ear and is thirsty.

 

The BELLADONNA earache on the other hand is a throbbing pain. The patient is a lot more toxic looking with a flushed face, high fever and possibly dilated pupils. The ear is worse to touch, jarring and worse with local cold. The patient normally is only a little sweaty.

 

The CHAMOMILLA earache is for the patient with really frantic pain, very angry, often occurring in children while teething and with a more stitching pain. Unlike the previous two medicines the pain is worse with heat and the patient is much better if carried about vigorously.

 

ARNICA is for the earache of barotrauma - the pain coming on after diving or plane travel.

 

Finally the HEPAR SULPH earache is for the patient who is worse with any draft or touch, and is very irritable, wanting to be wrapped up tightly against the cold. The pain is sharp or stabbing in nature.

 

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LESSON 5:DIGESTIVE DISORDERS†† (SAMPLE ONLY)

 

(1)††††††††††† MOUTH;

††††††††††† MOUTH ULCERS: Calendula tincture mixed with equal parts 3% peroxide apply each 15 minutes till better then less often.

 

(2)††††††††††† STOMACH:

 

††††††††††† 1)††††††††††† NAUSEA:

††††††††††† a)††††††††††† IPECAC: There is increased salivation and the tongue is invariably clean - quite uncharacteristically for a digestive disorder. (If there is vomiting of blood in these cases it is quite bright. This is then not a case for home management!!)

††††††††††† b)††††††††††† NUX VOM: This remedy acts via the autonomic nervous system and is associated with incoordinated contractions. There is therefore irregular bowel habit with seediness and a sense of great irritability. Accordingly it is our best treatment for digestive malfunctions after dietary indiscretions ie HANGOVERS. Food reactions of all sorts are often relieved by Nux vom. "DON'T LEAVE HOME WITHOUT IT!"

††††††††††† c)††††††††††† PHOSPHORUS: Vomiting a few minutes after drinking the icy water which they crave.

††††††††††† d)††††††††††† ARSENICUM ALB: Burning,restless,anxiety, chilly. Vomits almost immediately after drinking. PROSTRATION OUT OF PROPORTION TO THE AMOUNT AND NUMBER OF TIMES VOMITED / STOOL PASSED. SIMULTANEOUS VOMITING AND DIARRHOEA.

†††††††††††

3)††††††††††† LIVER:

††††††††††† a)††††††††††† NUX VOM: as above.

††††††††††† b)††††††††††† CHELIDONEUM: Hepatitis, under medical supervision. Pain under right scapula (shoulder-blade) CHOLECYSTITIS (GALL- BLADDER ATTACK)

 

4)††††††††††† COLIC:

††††††††††† a)††††††††††† COLOCYNTH/ MAG PHOS.: These may be used interchangeably for colic which has relief from pressure, doubling over and local warmth.

Colocynth has a further strong indication where colic is a result of anger.

††††††††††† b)††††††††††† DIOSCOREA: almost always helps those unusual colics where the

 

patient arches backward to gain relief.

 

5)††††††††††† LARGE INTESTINE:

††††††††††† a)††††††††††† NUX VOM: as above

††††††††††† b)††††††††††† BRYONIA: Constipation often with associated headache. Little urging. Great dryness throughout the body. Thirst. Irritability.

††††††††††† c)††††††††††† PODOPHYLLUM: This fixes up the vast majority of diarrhoea cases in general practice. The 30th potency or higher seems to be more effective than the lower potencies. There is little pain and lots of gurgling and spluttering of foul liquid stool. GIARDIA infections sometimes don't need "Flagyl®" (Metronidazole) when Podophyllum is given.

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LESSON 6: MENTALS AND HEADACHE†† (SAMPLE ONLY)

 

Rescue Remedy (although not strictly speaking homeopathy) can by used in any emergency; for sudden bad news, after an accident, or other shocks, to relieve the victim's fear is important for the physical well-being. After an accident give the Rescue Remedy, make the patient comfortable and wait for competent medical aid.

 

ARNICA: Arnica is not merely a remedy for soreness of bruises and falls. After an accident, injury or terrible shock, Arnica is useful for the severe prostration that results. The patient may be morose, wants to be left alone, does not want to talk, and says there is nothing wrong. Inability to concentrate, aversion to any effort, may progress to stupor or even unconsciousness. Arnica helps to prevent this and qualified medical opinion should be sought early. The following groupings, under particular emotions, are quite loose; by focussing on their differences as much as the similarities we get to know the remedies better.

 

ANXIETY and FEAR

 

Aconite: Very useful to combat the effects of fear following an accident or for fear from any cause. There may be fear of death, terror, even in strong and robust people. The face may become deathly pale or white with fainting, anxiety, restlessness and loss of strength. The most trifling ailment causes mental uneasiness worry, anguish and fear. There is a marked degree of tension and complaints come on suddenly such as from a sudden chill, fright, injury, shock or surgical operation. Wherever there is fear Aconite will help.

 

Arsenicum album: When the fear is based on an underlying sense of insecurity (generally of longer standing), associated with restlessness, prostration and chilliness, Arsenicum is indicated. These people need reassurance: someone reliable to be nearby; the finances to be closely monitored and secure; neatness and organisation of clothing, activities and environs; the best medical advice and also second opinions. The ultimate insecurity is disease and death. It is not so easy to reassure an Arsenicum patient.

 

Gelsemium: is a useful remedy for 'nerves' - terrors of anticipation, as in examination funk or stage fright, or in making a public speech or stage performance. It improves dizziness, drowsiness, dullness, trembling, muscular weakness etc. that occurs before these events, as well as such ailments after grief or bad news.

 

 

Pulsatilla: Is a remedy for fear but their timidity and weepiness is the outstanding feature. They may also have fear of heights, claustrophobia, fear of being alone in the dark, of meeting people etc. The baby has a pitiful cry always wanting caresses. Pulsatilla is malleable and changeable and when upset craves and is calmed by attention and consolation. They are often drawn to partners with a strong and decisive character to satisfy their need for strength and stability. The jealousy of Pulsatilla may be very intense and derives from their insecurity.

 

IRRITABILITY and ANGER

 

Belladonna: is characterised by sudden onset, violence, and recurrence. Acuteness of the senses - noises easily startle, bright light aggravates as do touch and jar. In fever or mania frightening hallucinations of faces, phantoms, animals, fire etc emerge, producing a desire to escape, bite, tear, destroy whatever may be nearby. There may be associated fears of dogs, dark or death. In madness there can be an evil, sardonic laugh. These are vital intense people; there is a sense of great energy around this remedy which also expresses itself with local violent symptoms e.g. burning, redness, swelling, throbbing pains that are so severe the patients want to beat their heads against the wall.

 

 

Chamomilla: is an excellent remedy for irritability and pain during teething. Babies can't bear pain and will whine and howl. They insist on being carried and the moment the harassed parent puts the baby down, the howling starts all over again and is usually worse at night. They will ask for this toy or the other and once they are offered they will throw them and want another. Nothing pleases, every trifle annoys. The cry has a snarling quality and brings anger in the parent. A few doses of Chamomilla brings peace to all. "For cranky little people of all ages". Very sensitive to pain or offence, and also ailments resulting from anger.

 

 

Colocynthis: Patients who need this remedy are easily offended and after a bout of anger or indignation develop pain of a cramping character in the head, face, abdomen or limbs, and may have diarrhoea. The cramps are ameliorated by heat and local pressure.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

HOMEOPATHIC TREATMENT of HEADACHES

 

The causes of headaches in children vary from that of the adults. In children headache very often marks the beginning of an infection such as influenza, sore throat etc. and the symptoms of the disease manifest quickly. Sometimes it may be due to indiscretion of food, exposure to sun or wind or rain etc. or to an emotional upset and these can be aborted by giving the appropriate Homeopathic remedy as early as possible.

 

In the adults the causes of headaches may be due to a generalised infection, from a metabolic cause, from the tension of the muscles of the neck or from an emotional cause. In chronic headache taking a few tablets of aspirin or panadol frequently is poor treatment, one must find the causes and deal with them.

 

The homeopathic treatment of chronic or recurrent headaches is beyond the scope of this course, but there are a few remedies which can be useful where certain causative factors are present on odd occasions. If the headache was brought on by indigestion, constipation or too many laxatives or excess alcohol - take Nux vomica night and morning for a few days until the headache improves and finally disappears.

 

If the headache is due to overeating, too much fat, too much ice-cream, Pulsatilla will help, taken hourly or second hourly while the headache is severe and leaving off as soon as the headache is gone.

 

If the headache is brought on by sorrow, grief or worry, Ignatia will help.

 

If the headache comes on after a fall, injury or concussion take Arnica hourly until improvement sets in. After head injuries if there is persistent headache or drowsiness or confusion qualified medical opinion should be sought early.

 

If the headache is the result of too long an exposure to the sun, Belladonna will relieve quickly. The patient is red with a flushed face, throbbing in the head, throbbing in the arteries and a great rush of blood to the head.

 

Headache in children is often from anticipation and excitement. When a birthday party or promised treat is due the child is laid low with violent headaches and sickness. This can usually be cured either by Arsenicum or Gelsemium.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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LESSON 7: OBSTETRICS AND GYNAECOLOGY(SAMPLE ONLY)

 

The use of homeopathic medicines in obstetrics and gynaecology is a very rewarding one because:-

 

(a)††††††††††† Conventional medicines in gynaecology often do not work satisfactorily, or have serious or unknown side-effects.

 

(b)†††††† Many conventional medicines are to be avoided during pregnancy and breast-feeding owing to the possibility of damaging the foetus or new-born babes. Homeopathic remedies most commonly used in obstetrics and gynaecology include Pulsatilla, Sepia, Lachesis, Natrum mur, Calc. carb, and Lilium tigrinum and of these, Pulsatilla and Sepia are the most commonly prescribed.

 

METHOD OF PRESCRIBING:

 

Acute complaints: Remedies are usually given frequently (e.g. 1-4 hourly) in a low potency (6x-30c) or high potency (above 1M). NB in continental Europe, what is permissible as a high or a low potency is more governed by legislation and you will see different approaches recommended there. These work as well as ours.

Chronic Complaints: The usual approach is to give infrequent doses (e.g. once a week) for 4 weeks in a medium to high potency (30c-200c). "Constitutional" prescribing is the main method of prescribing, plus the use of nosodes (remedies derived from disease products or the causative organism).

 

"Never felt well since": In homeopathy, it is always important to find out if something triggered off the problem: e.g. An accident or injury:- Arnica.

Grief, loss of loved one:- Ignatia, Nat. mur.

 

GYNAECOLOGY:

 

1)††††††††††† MENSTRUATION

††††††††††† a)††††††††††† PRIMARY AMENORRHOEA: (Failure of the first menses to ever appear). This presupposes full medical investigation has eliminated curable factors such as imperforate hymen!

††††††††††† ††††††††††† i)*††††††††††† Pulsatilla; Moodiness, changeable easily tearful, possibly digestive problems, (nausea, loss of appetite),feels the cold but wilts in the heat. Thirstless. *

††††††††††† ††††††††††† ii)††††††††††† Sepia: Pale, sallow, almost yellowish complexion; possible low dragging abdominal pains; chronic thin vaginal discharge; tired and solitary. *

††††††††††† ††††††††††† iii)††††††††††† Calc. carb: Slow, chubby, chilly, sweaty and pale, headaches, tired and listless.

 

††††††††††† b)††††††††††† SECONDARY AMENORRHOEA: (loss of established menses):

Once again, the “bleeding obvious” must not be ignored: ie the possibility of pregnancy. It is a fact that if these medicines are indicated in pregnacy, then not only will the health of the pregnant woman but also the foetus will be enhanced.

They will not harm the pregnancy: we have over two centuries of world-wide experience to confirm this.

††††††††††† ††††††††††† i)††††††††††† Aconite: If has occurred after a fright or sudden exposure to a chill or sunstroke.

††††††††††† ††††††††††† ii)††††††††††† Ignatia: Menses stopped after grief or loss.

††††††††††† ††††††††††† iii)††††††††††† Pulsatilla:

†††††††††††††††††††††††

2)††††††††††† DYSMENORRHOEA (Period pain)

††††††††††† i)*††††††††††† Chamomilla: Very severe colicky pains, restless; peevish; diarrhoea.

††††††††††† ii)††††††††††† Mag. phos: Crampy pains in lower abdomen, relieved by warmth, doubling over and movement.

††††††††††† iii)*††††††††††† Coffea: Colicky pains driving to despair: Pains disturb sleep; tosses and turns; esp. suited to tall, lean stooping persons with dark complexions.

††††††††††† iv)††††††††††† Nux vom: Very irritable and angry; constipation, menses early and prolonged.

††††††††††† v)††††††††††† Sabina: Pains from sacrum to pubis and from below upwards, shooting up vagina; much bleeding with clots.

††††††††††† vi)††††††††††† Cimicifuga: Pain across pelvis, from hip to hip. The pain worsens as the period gets heavier: not the normal situation for most women. When in pain, they can’t think: “as if the head were in a cloud”. Fibromyalgia of the upper thoracic and neck muscles is a common feature.

††††††††††† vii)††††††††††† Secale: Intolerance of heat, better from cold, (although the patient feels cold to touch); passive oozing bleeding. ALSO GIVE CONSTITUTIONAL REMEDY: e.g. PULS, CALC. CARB., SEPIA.

 

 

 

3)††††††††††† IRREGULAR MENSTRUATION:

††††††††††† Here one is mainly looking for the constitutional remedy:

Puls: usually tardy and changeable.

Sepia: too late and scanty, or early and profuse.

Graphites: usually late and scanty.

Nat. mur: irregular, usually profuse.

Folliculinum: very important remedy, given usually as one dose on day 10 of the cycle, monthly for 3 months. This remedy is derived from ovarian tissue.

 

4.††††††††††† MENORRHAGIA (heavy menses):

††††††††††† i)††††††††††† Belladonna: excess flow, bright red clots and blood; general congestion and redness, and headache, worse sudden movement or jarring.

††††††††††† ii)††††††††††† China: early, heavy black clots; very debilitating.

 

††††††††††† ALSO CONSTITUTIONAL REMEDIES, ESPECIALLY:-

Phos: Menses last too long, intermenstrual bleeding.

Puls: Changeable, usually late.

Calc.carb: Early, profuse, long.

 

 

5)††††††††††† INFECTIONS: (This presupposes full curative antimicrobial treatment has been offered to the patient if available). NB pelvic inflammatory disease is usually iniated by such a curable infection. If would be a pity for a woman to lose her fertility because of squeamishness about appropriate curative treatment. Homeopathy can be given at the same time to enhance the body’s response and to hasten cure.

††††††††††† i)††††††††††† Pulsatilla: Bland, creamy discharge.

††††††††††† ii)††††††††††† Sepia: Discharge offensive and yellowish; dragging uterine discomfort.

††††††††††† iii)††††††††††† Sulphur: Offensive discharge with much itch; worse for warmth of bed and warm bath.

††††††††††† iv)††††††††††† Hydrastis: Discharge acrid, corrosive, thick tenacious, itchy.

 

NOSODES (Remedies derived from diseased tissue or disease organisms):

††††††††††† i)††††††††††† Psorinum: Chilly, smelly, lumpy discharge, lack of reaction.

††††††††††† ii)††††††††††† Medorrhinum: Chronic pelvic disorders, discharge thin, excoriating, fishy smell (often from Brahnamella or mixed bacterial vaginosis infection: this effect is more notable if the secretions are made alkaline eg from semen); vaginal warts.

 

HERPES GENITALIS:

 

ONCE AGAIN, AS HERPES IS USUALLY A CHRONIC COMPLAINT, APPROACH TREATMENT FROM THE CONSTITUTIONAL POINT OF VIEW.

 

i)*††††††††††† Nat.mur: Often has history of oral herpes; feels weepy and may cry, but dislikes sympathy; deep acting. (200c or higher). See section on Mentals.

ii)*†††††† Rhus tox: Itching vesicles; relieved by heat and movement; an acute medicine.

iii)†††††† Sepia: Itching, ulceration; indifference to loved ones; chilly; constipated; bearing down sensation, very sensitive to tobacco and perfume smells

 

 

 

OBSTETRICS:

 

Caulophyllum: Give once a month for last three to four months of pregnancy; 30c potency; softens the cervix in preparation for labour; NB: if given too often may lead to early labor and haemorrhage. Alternatively (and my usual practice), give daily in last 2-3 weeks of pregnancy.

 

NAUSEA:

 

i)††††††††††† Ipecac: continual nausea with clean tongue.

ii)††††††††††† Pulsatilla: changeable nausea; intolerant of heat; no thirst; weepy.

iii)†††††† Sepia: Hunger with nausea; indifferent to loved ones; constipation.

iv)††††††††††† Petroleum: Persistent appetite and empty feeling; wakes hungry at night; heartburn; worse riding in a car.

 

DELIVERY:

 

i)††††††††††† Aconite: Shock, suddenness, fear, restlessness.

ii)††††††††††† Arnica: During labour and immediately after. As Arnica acts on capillaries it reverses bruising of the vagina and vulva as well as in the baby’s brain.

iii)††††††††††† Staphysagria: For problems from stretched and incised sphincters. (e.g. painful urination).

 

 

MENOPAUSE:

 

Main problems are:- Hot flushes, sweating, palpitations, irregular menses and flooding, headaches, sexual problems and prolapse.

 

i)††††††††††† Lachesis: Palpitations, hot flushes, headaches, faintings, flooding; Lachesis sleeps into an aggravation (i.e. wakes up with it); Left sided symptoms; hates tight things around neck or waist, jealous, loquacious and suspicious.

ii)††††††††††† Pulsatilla- Weepy, depressed, everything changeable (mood, menses etc.); backache, fatigue; in a Pulsatilla person.

iii)†††††† Calc. carb: Plump, chilly, sweaty, fearful, menses too profuse, prolonged; palpitations esp. at night, headaches.

iv)†††††† Sepia: Palpitations, prolapse with bearing down feeling; menses irregular; tired, headaches.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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MINI MATERIA MEDICA - of remedies in this introductory homeopathic course.

(SAMPLE ONLY)

 

1.†††††††† ACON - Acute onset of any illness often after intense cold or intense heat, usually associated with great anxiety and restlessness with fear of death, very short acting. Useful to prevent fainting in injections.

 

2.††††††††††† AILANTHUS - Sore throats - tonsillitis with membranous exudate. Some glandular fever cases.

 

3.††††††††††† ANT.CRUD - Dirty tongue, nausea often, dry skin eruption. Digestive symptoms.

 

4.†††††††† ANT. TART- Marvellous in rattly chests The tongue is dirty (opposite Ipec). Nausea is usual.

 

5.†††††††† APIS - Little thirst. Worst for heat generalised oedema, useful after insect bites. The affected part looks as if an intra-venous drip had run into the tissues.

 

6.††††††††††† ARNICA - Capillary damage, bruised sensation on the body anywhere, hard dry cough which hurts, weary limbs after exercise (useful as a preventative!)†††††††††† .

7.††††††††††† ARSEN. ALBUM - Great anxiety and restlessness in gastroenteritis; simultaneous vomiting and diarrhoea. Useful in some asthma cases - burning pains relieved by heat. Very chilly and thirsty.

 

8.††††††††††† ARUM TRIPH. - Sore throat with voice intermittently lost and regained from moment to moment. “Clergyman’s sore throat”.

 

9.††††††††††† BAPTISIA -. Patient looks drunk with a dusky colour of the face. Not a commonly used remedy nowadays (typhoid!).

 

10.††††††††††† BELLADONNA - Red, hot, dry, thirsty, delirious rapid pulse, dilated pupils. Rather useful in strep. throats and acute skin infection, e.g. cellulitis.

 

11.††††††††††† BRYONIA - Very dry mouth, thirsty, pain is worse for any movement and better for pressure thus patient lies very still. Infection of serosal membranes, e.g. meningitis, synovitis, pericarditis, pleurisy, peritonitis.

 

12.††††† CALC SULPH: To expel pus after surgical incision. Use low potencies. Similar to Hepar sulph.

 

13.††††††††††† CALENDULA - Useful in tincture strength as a wound healer. May be used in potency in injuries.

 

14.††††††††††† CANTHARIS - Blistering eruptions dysuria -"Claytons Bactrim"!

 

15.††††††††††† CARBO.VEG - Bloating and abdominal distension cold extremities. Air hunger.

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APPENDIX A††††††††††††††† (SAMPLE ONLY)

 

PRINCIPLES AND PRACTICE OF ACUTE HOMEOPATHIC PRESCRIBING

 

PART 1

 

Definition:††††††††††† Homeopathy is that aspect of the healing art which prescribes on the totality of the patient's symptoms and in accordance with the Law of Cure and the Law of Similars (Similia Similibus Curantur or Let Likes be treated by Like). (What a mouthful!!)

 

Successful prescription is followed by healing in accordance with the Law of Cure viz: Disappearance of symptoms:-

(a)††††††† From above downwards e.g. head to feet.

(b)†††††† From within to without e.g. lungs to skin.

(c)††††††† From more important organ to less important organ, e.g. lungs to skin, or heart to joints.

(d)†††††† In reverse order to that of their appearance, e.g. in measles the cough being first, is last to go, the rash disappearing sooner.

 

There are thus three fundamental principles to the understanding of homeopathy viz. The Law of Similars, The Law of Cure, the notions of potentisation and provings.

 

Potentisation: In simple terms, all biologically active substances appear to act in two separate ways upon the living substance viz:

(a)††††††††††† Directly by chemical action, and within certain limits in direct proportion to their concentration, e.g. increasing the dose of Belladonna tincture also progressively accelerates the pulse and inhibits salivation.

(b)††††††††††† Indirectly by acting on the body's ability to heal ("Vital Force") in proportion to the serial dilution and agitation of the substance in the solvent ("potency"). It is believed that this healing power is released from the raw substance by serial dilution with solvent, e.g. alcohol and agitation (succusion) or with solid granular diluent (trituration e.g. Lactose).

 

The notation of this dilution is as follows:

(a)††††††† Raw substance as saturated solution in alcohol = mother tincture (M.T.).

(b)†††††† 1 part M.T. in 9 parts alcohol or lactose = 1 x potency.

(c)††††††† 1 part 1 x in 9 parts alcohol or lactose = 2x.

 

 

This is the decimal potency, widely in use in Europe. The other commonly used system of dilution is the centesimal system, widely in use in all English- speaking countries.

 

(a)††††††† 1 part M.T. in 99 parts alcohol or lactose gives 1c.

(b)†††††† 1 part 1c in 99 parts alcohol gives 2c. A moment's thought shows that e.g. 4x (= 1 in 10x10x10x10) is the same as 2c (1 in 100x100) at least in dilutional

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Useful references and further information about homeopathy

 

ref1) Signorini A, Andrioli G, Bellavite P (2000) The Similia Principle Revisited, Atti del Congresso Forum 2000 Sorento 24-27 Feb. (translated by Dr Eric Asher)

 

ref 2) Kleijnen J, Knipschild P, ter Riet G (1991) Clinical trials of homeopathy, BMJ 302:316-323

 

ref3) Kayne S, Beattie N (2000) The use of isopathy in the treatment of allergies, Proceedings of the Liga Megicorum Homeopathic Internationalis held at Budapest May 2000: 30-31

 

ref4,5,6) Reilly D, Taylor MA, Beattie NGM et al. Is evidence for homoeopathy reproducible? Lancet 1994; 344: 1601-1606.

Reilly D, Taylor MA. Potent placebo or potency? A proposed study model with initial findings using homoeopathically prepared pollens in hay fever. British Homoeopathic Journal 1985; 74: 65-75.

Reilly D, Taylor M, McSharry C, Aitchison T. Is homoeopathy a placebo response? Lancet 1986; 2 (8520): 881-886.)

 

ref7) Asher E (1987),Homeopathy in medical practice, Aust Fam Physician Mar; 16 (3): 209

 

Dr Eric Asher MB BS FRACGP FFHom is a homeopathically trained family doctor now in private practice in Thame and Winchester, UK.

He is a founding member and immediate past president of the Australian Medical Faculty of Homeopathy (AMFHom).

Email <easher@homeocare.co.uk>

 

The Homeopathic Trust has a most informative website at www.trusthomeopathy.org and is highly recommended for further information.

Its research section is very clear.