Homeopathy Papers

A Flurry of Questions: Presenting Your Acute Case to a Homeopath

Elaine Lewis
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Don’t waste your time giving Elaine your case if you haven’t filled out the questionnaire. Here it is.

Here’s a question for you….

What kinds of statements are practically useless to a homeopath?

I’m sick!

I have a virus.

I have a headache!

I have a sore throat!

I don’t feel well!

I’m depressed!

What do you have for an upset stomach?

I have a pain here, here, and here.

Do you have anything for a cold?

I have anxiety attacks.

I have a fever.

Here are my blood test numbers.

People are used to dealing with “regular” doctors, and don’t know how to give their symptoms to a homeopath. We have no single remedy for “headache”, or “cold” or any other diagnosis. We can only come up with a remedy after hearing the WHOLE case as uniquely experienced by you and only you!  If you tell a homeopath you’re sick, the result will be A Flurry of Questions; and here they are now:

Questionnaire

Name:

Age:

Male or Female:

Weight:

Height:

Date:

Email Address:

1. Describe the complaint or complaints in your own words; in other words, tell what happened, in as much detail as you can, including whether the complaint came on suddenly or gradually.   

2. Etiology–this means the CAUSE of the complaint, if you haven’t already said so. What caused you to get sick or develop the problem? Think about what was going on at, or around, the time of the occurrence.  The answer may be obvious if you were stung by a bee or fell out of a tree; but, less obvious etiologies would include things like: change of weather, suppressing feelings or suppressing symptoms with drugs, over-studying, receiving good news or bad news, having to put up with rudeness, loss of vital fluids–from diarrhea, bleeding, excessive sex, etc.; loss of a loved one, loss of property, jealousy, fright, use of drugs–prescription or otherwise– never recovering completely from an infection like the flu or other illness, suppressing a fever with anti-fever medication, loss of sleep, surgery, too much alcohol, too much junk food, getting the feet wet, drinking cold water on a hot day, embarrassment, breathing in dust, over-exertion, exposure to toxins, vaccinations, etc.

3. Sensation–describe the pain or other sensation you have. Does it extend anywhere, does it shoot anywhere? For instance, “It feels like there’s a crumb in my throat, I’m constantly trying to swallow. The pain shoots to my left ear.”

4. Appearance– anything remarkable? Red skin, droopy eyes, bruising, etc.?

5. Location–where on the body is your complaint located?

6. Modalities– This is a fancy word that means, “What makes your complaint better or worse”?  Please don’t say “nothing!”, THINK! This question is very important to us!  Consider the following possibilities: Better or worse from hot or cold applications, weather, bathing/showering, warm rooms, fresh air, drafts, motion, sleep, a certain time of day, massage, hard pressure, assuming a certain position; stimuli (conversation, noise, light, touch, rubbing, music, company, consolation, sympathy, etc.), eating, drinking, ice, hot tea, milk, sweets, chocolate, etc. Remember, these are only examples. Think about your case: what makes you feel somewhat better? What makes you feel worse? Another way of thinking about this is saying, What does the complaint force you to do? For example, if you’re doubled over in pain, then you are better for bending double.  If you hold your chest when you cough, then you’re better for pressure.

7. Concomitants (other symptoms that came with the complaint, “along for the ride”, so to speak)–Another way of asking this is, “What ELSE is going on at the same time?” It could be anything: fatigue, ringing in the ears, back ache, burping, salivation, dizziness, sneezing, anxiety…it could be important or unimportant. For example: Headache with irritability, headache with runny eyes, menstrual cramps with burping, diarrhea with chills or fear, etc.

8. Discharges–color, odor, consistency and sensation. (A discharge is anything liquid that’s coming out—even saliva if it’s excessive or unusual in any way. So, for instance, runny nose, diarrhea, vaginal discharge, runny eyes, spermatorrhea, menstrual bleeding and so on.) So, for example, “I have a runny nose that’s clear, watery, and burns my upper lip.”

9. Generals–these are all the symptoms that begin with the word “I”: I’m hot, I’m cold, I’m hot one minute and cold the next, I’m thirsty, I’m tired, I’m weak, I’m nervous, I’m jumpy, I startle easily, I’m sad, I’m irritable, I’m hungry, I want to be left alone, I’m humiliated, I’m embarrassed, I’m angry, I’m blaming others, I’m nauseous, I want pickles, I want ice, etc.

10. The mentals: Is the complaint changing you mentally and emotionally? Think about: irritability, panic, anxiety, weepiness, self-pity, confusion, crying, dullness, apathy/indifference, overly cheerful, optimistic, pessimistic, and so on.

11. What have you been saying? For instance: “I’m fine, leave me alone.” “Don’t leave!” “I wanna go home!” “I want ice”, “I want quiet!”, “Turn that music off!”, etc.

12. What are you doing? For example, tossing and turning, pacing, arguing, fidgeting, moaning and groaning, calling people on the phone for support, just lying down and not caring, sleeping excessively, doing anything excessively or not enough, etc.

13. Describe your thirst and appetite–are you thirsty, not thirsty, what temperature do you want your drinks, what kind of drinks do you want, just sips, or gulps, frequently or infrequently? Are you craving certain foods or avoiding certain foods?  Is there a food or drink you simply must have or you’d feel deprived?

14. Fever? Can you describe it? For instance, is it constant, or does it come and go? Is it a dry fever or accompanied by perspiration? Anything else you can say about it, like, goes away outside, worse in warm rooms, worse in hot bath, comes on every day at 5 o’clock, etc.?


15. Sweating? Describe. When does the sweating occur? Where on the body?  Any particular odor?  Does it leave a stain of a particular color?

16. Odors? Are odors an issue in the case, such as bad breath, foul or unusual odors of any sort? Any identifiable odors–like sulphur, onions, fish, etc.?

17. What is most striking, peculiar or identifying about your condition?

18. Is there a diagnosis? For instance, the flu, teething, colitis, diabetes, etc.

19. Describe your energy–are you nervous, quiet, restless, agitated, sleepy, dull, prostrated, collapsed, stuporous, anguished, desperate, active, cheerful, energetic, bubbly, etc.

20.  What does your tongue look like? (color/coating/pattern, crack/s, shape, etc.)

21.  If you have a cough, please tell what it sounds like; for example, “It’s a dry cough that sounds like a saw sawing through a pine board!” or, “It sounds like a seal barking!” or, “It’s loose and rattling and yet, raising phlegm is very difficult.” or, “It’s dry, it’s a very sharp sound, and it’s very painful, it makes my head hurt, I have to grab my head.”

22.  If you haven’t already said if you’re hotter or colder than usual, or if there’s an issue with your body temperature, like hot feet or cold feet, cold hands, shivering, etc., say it now.

23. This question only applies to complaints of a more chronic nature: I need to know what you eat, drink and “take”. I need to know how long you wait between meals; so, a typical way to answer this question might be:

“For breakfast today I had a donut and a cup of coffee and I took my arthritis pain medicine. Sometimes I might have orange juice (Tropicana) and sometimes I’ll go to McDonald’s and have an Egg McMuffin. I usually eat lunch around noon and I’ll have maybe a ham and cheese sandwich with mustard on rye and a pepsi and I’ll take my arthritis pain medicine again. At 3:00 I usually have a candy bar or a bag of potato chips and a soda. After work I have one or two beers at my local bar before I go home. I might have a pizza for dinner or order out, maybe Chinese food and I take my multi vitamin tablet then. I might have chocolate ice cream before bed or maybe a slice of apple pie and I take my arthritis pain medicine again.”
You might even say what you had to eat today, or yesterday; or, you might simply write down everything you eat for the next two days and present it here.

Don’t suddenly start eating healthy to make yourself look good, just be yourself, or I might never be able to figure out why you’re sick.

Thank you for answering all my questions.

 

About the author

Elaine Lewis

Elaine Lewis

Elaine Lewis, D.Hom., C.Hom. Elaine is a passionate homeopath, helping people offline as well as online. Contact her at LEWRA@aol.com Elaine is a graduate of Robin Murphy's Hahnemann Academy of North America and author of many articles on homeopathy including her monthly feature in the Hpathy ezine, "The Quiz". Visit her website at: http://elainelewis.hpathy.com/ and TheSilhouettes.org

Leave a Comment

6 Comments

  • Very Very useful post for people wishing to get help from homoeopathy through WWW as well as for newbies who wish to make a good questionnaire form.

    Should be considered for it’s stickyness in patient guidance forum …

  • Wow Elaine – even as a student, I know the brilliance of this article! Perhaps because I am already an herbalist and energy worker and have similar issues. I will say that homeopathy may kick up the bar a notch though! 😉 Thanks for a dose of awesomeness!

  • Dear madam,
    Your hierarchy is marvelous. I also narrate a case: Once a patient suffered from cold and running nose n eyes , sneezing. With his coryza he would get angry and beat his head with his fist. I gave him aurum met 30 a few and he was cured. Here general/mental/perversion of was well marked. Regards

  • Yes, you’d have to prescribe on the mental concomitant here, absolutely; as “runny nose and eyes” contain far too many remedies and will lead us nowhere! Thanks for the example.