Elaine, hi, it’s Kelly here! My daughter had swine flu! I wish I could write it up for you but I wasn’t able to help her much. I tried maybe 8 different remedies during the course of the illness but nothing really helped.
You should have emailed me!
You’re probably right, I should have. My sister had the same symptoms when she stayed with me the month before. Poor thing was sooo sick- she’s still talking about it! I tried many remedies to no avail.
After she left, I bought 2 more remedies; but, none of them helped my daughter.
I wondered what others have found helpful for this flu because:
and a bunch of others did nothing!
The symptoms were as follows: sore throat, high (104 F.) fever, severe body aches, severe chilliness and pounding headache.
How sad. Kelly, as you know, none of the symptoms you just mentioned mean anything to a homeopath!
What? What do you mean they don’t mean anything? I just told you what was wrong!
The Repertory rubrics (headings) for these symptoms (fever, sore throat, etc.) are so large, so HUGE, so general, that virtually every homeopathic remedy has them!!!
What’s peculiar about your fever? What’s strange or characteristic about your sore throat? That’s what we have to know! So, towards that end….
The Big 4!
The Big 4?
Yes, the Big 4:
Sensation, Location, Modalities, Concomitants; Sensation, Location, Modalities, Concomitants!
It sounds like a song from the ’50’s! Doesn’t it? “Every Day Of The Week” by the Students!
Substitute “Sensation, Location, Modalities, Concomitants” for “Sunday to Monday, Tuesday to Wednesday, Thursday to Friday….” go ahead, try it!
Elaine, you’re just working in excuses to play your favorite songs! Again!
But it’s a classic! Unfortunately, we can’t play records all day, we do have to tell everybody what these things mean! “Sensation” is self-explanatory. What does the pain, etc. feel like? Pain, for example, isn’t just pain. It can be sharp, dull, achy, burning, raw or scratchy–there’s no limit to what the sensation might be, you just have to think about it! Don’t tell the homeopath you just have a pain, that’s not going to lead to a remedy!
“Location” matters because some of our remedies are “right-sided” and others are “left-sided”.
What about “modalities”? They are REALLY important to us! If we don’t get the modalities, God help us! Modalities are all the things that have an influence on the complaint, for bad or for good! For example, if you have the flu, believe it or not, there will be factors that make you feel either better or worse: some people with the flu are better for sips of water or tea, but worse for cold air, or showering or better from hand-holding and sympathy, or worse for all company and conversation and better for lying perfectly still in the dark on the side that hurts. These little details (“better this” and “worse that”) are called the modalities! TRY AND THINK OF EVERYTHING that makes your complaint better or worse! And if your child can’t express himself? Simply observe what he’s doing, what he’s avoiding, what he’s asking for, what he’s saying “no” to, how he’s lying, moving…all these things will give you clues for the modalities.
And what about “concomitants”, what are they?
Concomitant means “associated with” or “along with”. In other words, what symptoms came “along with” your complaint. They are highly valued because they are often the striking, strange, rare and peculiar symptoms we need to find the right remedy. Take for example…. OK, here’s one that will be familiar to everyone– a headache with nausea. Many people have that, right? Nausea is the concomitant. Or…I just recently met someone who had a cough with a rash on the right side of her face! Tell me that isn’t peculiar! But what if she had just told me, “I have a cough”? Would I have had a complete picture of her illness? I don’t think so!
Sometimes body language tells us what we need to know. Bryonia patients are lying perfectly still. Any movement makes them worse, even answering quesitons makes them worse! Colocynthis and Mag-phos. patients are bent over double. Shana recently got Mag-phos. for menstrual cramps just because I found her bent over double! Gelsemium patients tend to answer every question with the word, “Huh…?” because they’re stuporous; or, they start to answer and don’t finish. Nux vomica patients are rudely barking orders at people (“I’m still waiting for that glass of water I asked for two seconds ago!”). Arsenicum patients are begging you not to leave! (“Can’t you just stay for one more minute?”)
Do you need to know anything else besides the Big 4?
Which, again, are?
Sensation-Location, Modalities-Concomitants/Sensation-location, modalities-concomitants!
That was very good Kelly! Good singing, too! Yes, yes it would help to know three more things:
1. Is there a time issue? Is the patient worse in the evening? Worse at 9 p.m.? Worse at midnight, etc.? Think of this as the Time Modality. I once literally had a cough that came on at 11:30 every night without fail!
2. Did the complaint come on suddenly or gradually? Complaints that come on suddenly are often covered by just two remedies: Aconite and Belladonna! (Or Baptisia if the complaint is more septic.)
Really? And what does septic mean?
Sepsis is characterized by bad odors, stuporousness, muscle aches and confusion. If a septic condition comes on suddenly, think of Baptisia. Baptisia is thought of as a thirsty Gelsemium with stuporousness, apathy and an inclination to sleep. Now for # 3. I’m leaving the best for last.
Etiology means the cause. Am I right?
Yes, it means “what caused your complaint?” You have to know this! The remedy must cover it! Unless the etiology is something vague, like, “germs” or something really common, it alone could be so valuable as to solve the case for you! How often has this happened? You’ve taken the case and it looks really good for a certain remedy, like Belladonna: the patient is red, full of heat, burning; you’re just about to give Belladonna when you ask, “What caused this?” And the patient says, “Peanut allergy, I ate peanuts!” Allergy???? That’s not Belladonna! That’s Apis! See, when you know the cause, it changes everything!
So, people, take note:
Etiology Over-rules Symptomatology!
Or stated simply, etiology over-rules the totality of symptoms. Consider the following (remember that etiology is expressed through our “Ailments From” rubrics in the Repertory):
Ailments from cold/dry winds–Aconite
Ailments from acute grief–Ignatia
Ailments from eating fatty, rich food–Pulsatilla
Ailments from over-excitement–Coffea
Ailments from cold/damp weather–Rhus tox.
Ailments from blunt trauma–Arnica
We scarcely need to know anything else, such is the importance of etiology.
So, getting back to your daughter’s flu, when you say “sore throat”, we would have to ask:
What was the sensation of the sore throat?
What made it better or worse (the modalities)?
Where in the throat is it, right side? left side? (location)
What’s associated with it, what came along with it? (the concomitants)
We need to do this for every symptom in the case. A properly delivered symptom should sound something like this:
I have constipation with frequent ineffectual urging. It’s chronic and causes much abdominal pain which causes me to bend over double, the pain is better for rubbing; it’s a sharp pain that shoots downward; a hot water bottle helps; plus, I also have burping with this and my stomach makes gurgling noises.
That is a “complete” symptom! “I have constipation” is a one-dimensional, meaningless, worthless statement to a homeopath. Is this how you plan to report your symptoms? Then don’t be surprised if the homeopath comes back to you with a hundred follow-up questions because you haven’t given him anything to go on!
You have no hope of finding the remedy unless you can learn to speak in “complete symptoms”!
Right, I got that: sensation, location, modalities, concomitants. And etiology. What else does the homeopath have to know?
The “Generals”! Kelly, think about it. If you’re sick “in general”, you’re a lot worse off than if you just have a local complaint, like a sprained ankle. You can still get on with your life even if you have a broken leg; but, let something effect you “in general” and your life comes to a halt! So that means if you had a choice between the remedy that matched the “generals” or the remedy matching the “particulars”, the “generals” would win every time! “General” symptoms start with the word “I”; “local” symptoms start with the word “my”. Examples of “General symptoms”:
“I’m scared, I need someone sitting next to me!”
“I need to have a fan blowing on me!”
“I need a cup of ice.”
“I’m cold but I don’t want a blanket!”
Now, let’s say you’ve done all this fancy questioning, you’ve taken a proper case, and no remedy covers the picture really well or all you’ve got are common symptoms like “runny nose” and “cough”. Then look for the “concomitant” in the case because that might be your salvation! For instance, maybe you can’t figure out the patient’s fever remedy but you notice he has lower back pain–that’s the concomitant! It’s probably Nux vomica or Kali carb.! If there are no concomitants, no modalities, no definable sensations, or etiology, a nosode should be tried. For example, if the saliva isn’t normal, make a remedy from that. I’ve written an article called “How To Make Your Own Remedy” which you can search for; plus, it’s on my website, you can find it there: www.ElaineLewis.hpathy.com