Title: Homeopathy and Dementia, Volume 1
Author: Louis Klein
Publisher: Narayana Verlag, Germany
ISBN: 978-3-95582-252-1, First Edition, 2022
Hard Cover, Full Color, 590 Pages including end notes and index
Reviewer: Vatsala Sperling
Homeopathy has made giant strides in remedies from fish. In prior centuries, just two remedies from fish were known and an in use, (1) Oleum jecoris aselli, cod-liver oil, and (2) Serum Anguillae, eel serum. Currently, 42 fish-based remedies are available and in use, and that indeed is a giant stride.
This explosion in the use of fish-based remedies began almost 40 years ago when Louis Klein found that in his practice, he was encountering several cases of dementia and cognitive decline. He observed a ‘dementia quality’ in his patients who were otherwise well and were needing fish-based remedies.
He connected the dots. Fish based remedies show an effect on dementia and memory loss. People needing fish remedies have a dementia quality to them, and based on this set of observations, he asked the question, could fish remedies be used when memory decline symptoms appear?
Bravo to Louis Klein, for the next 40 plus years, he simply continued with fish-based remedies for memory issues and based on his experience, we have what I can only call “a superbly fantastic ground-breaking book on fish remedies”.
This is a straight-forward, no-nonsense, clearly written, expansive book that covers fish symbolism in cultures across the world, then dips into topics like prion, cannibalism, mad-cow disease, and their connection to dementia.
Louise writes that fishes in general cull their bad eggs, end up eating good eggs in the process, and also, develop a taste for newly born fry. In effect, fishes are practicing cannibalism. Since he had already observed a connection between prion disease, cannibalism, and memory / brain pathology related illnesses, the next direct step was to see the connection between fish-based remedies and memory/ cognition related issues.
From the homeopathic perspective, the fish themes are laid out clearly in 25 pages. After reading and absorbing the content, you will never have a problem in spotting fish-related themes emerging in your cases. This simple and clear listing of fish themes, how these themes connect to Jan Scholten’s periodic table themes, various sensations, and their expressions, is an unmistakable strong feature of this book.
Fish materia medica is a superbly written major aspect of this book, and something that would enable this book to become a ‘fish-remedy classic’ text and reference book one day in the future and this section contains materia medica information on 42 fishes and fish-based remedies.
What I found most astonishing and deeply satisfying is the skill that Louis Klein has used as an author. I will give an example: take Cyprinus carpio (carp). This chapter begins with an eye-catching color picture, and a brief write-up on wild stock of carp.
Then we get to read its natural history, followed by distinguishing homeopathy features (themes). Then there is a list of dementia indications. In writing homeopathic commentary, Louis Klein has distinguished and differentiated various members of the carp family (Cyprinidae) and given indications for choosing one or the other.
Though our conventional materia medicas do not go into the positive side of a person (patient), Louis Klein boldly does. He has observed these positive aspects in his casetaking and found indication for valuable themes. As a result, he successfully carves out a full picture that includes disposition, positive aspects of the personality, similarities with other remedies, how some personality traits might lead to development of pathology, dreams, various themes that point to carp remedy, and finally, case example with analysis.
These are followed by clinical focus guide, in clearly laid out bullet points, that include mind and disposition, themes, physical focus and pathology, sensation, remedy relationship, and finally endnotes relevant to the chapter. In some chapters, proving information and cases are also included. This is a sumptuous fare as far as the new style of writing materia medica is concerned.
Since each fish belongs to a larger group, in section 3, Louis Klein has written about grouping of fish remedies and in this section, we find details of carp, catfish, salmon, scorpionfish, shark, and sturgeon groups. There is also a grouping of fish based on their habitat. This group description includes zoological classification up to sub-families, family commentary, and a brief homeopathic theme.
An overview of dementia and Alzheimer’s is a very interesting chapter. We have been trained and regularly reminded by certifying bodies in the USA, that as homeopaths we do not diagnose and treat any medical condition and give any medicines.
With this limitation on our work, it is gratifying to read chapter 4 where the author gives an overview of dementia. He has defined and distinguished dementia and written about 12 diseases by touching upon pathology symptoms, various studies, diagnosis, causes, and risk factors, as well as conventional treatments and outcome.
Rich in these details, this chapter is very useful to readers who encounter dementia and cognitive decline cases in their practice. The diseases included in this chapter are Alzheimer’s, Creutzfeld-Jakob disease, Lewy body dementia, Down’s syndrome and Alzheimer’s, Frontotemporal dementia, Huntington’s disease, Mixed dementia, Normal pressure hydrocephalus, Posterior cortical atrophy, Parkinson’s disease dementia, Vascular dementia, Korsakoff syndrome, and Post-influenzal/viral dementia.
Presently, dementia and other related illnesses are on the rise, particularly amongst the elderly in our practice. As homeopaths, we can do much to help these patients in alleviating their symptoms, or at least slowing the progression of their symptoms, by way of supporting their vital force with a remedy from fish that mirrors the themes seen in these patients.
This form of healing work is strictly based on the fundamental philosophy of homeopathy – like cures like – as laid out by the founder, Dr. Samuel Hahnmann, and in this book, Homeopathy and dementia, author Louis Klein has expertly demonstrated how to use fish remedies in the modern context, while staying true to the fundamental philosophy of homeopathy.
My take, this book is a must for all homeopaths who encounters patients with memory-related issues in their practice.
Louis Klein, thank you for writing this book.