Mystery Illness?

Written by Elaine Lewis

I have no idea what’s wrong with this patient! Can you guess her remedy?

Hi Mom, before we start the quiz… don’t you have something to say?

No.  I’m pretty sure I don’t.

Maybe something that starts with happy and ends with… Well, actually, I think we need Paul McCartney for this.

No, no, Shana, actually, we don’t…. Shana?  Oh crap!

By the way, I think I saw Linda in the video.

Yes, you did.  I really miss Linda McCartney.  You know, Paul put her in the band so that he’d never have to be away from her.  Isn’t that sweet?  Kind of like you and me, always together; only what a shame you’re wasted on me, I’m so boring, and you’re so beautiful!

Mom, it’s hard to meet people in a pandemic.

You are so right.  Oh well, Happy Birthday!  You might want to stop aging.  It’s enough already!

If we can possibly move on to the Death Report?

Well, if we have to….

We lost Morris “B.B.” Dickerson (seated below), bass player and co-founder of the funk band, War.

Maybe you’ve heard of Eric Burdon from the Animals?

Heard of him!  Don’t you remember?  I sang “House of the Rising Sun” in assembly in the 10th grade!  Wasn’t that an Eric Burdon song?

Well, I don’t “remember” it, per se, but, it was when Eric Burdon sang with The Animals.

How was I supposed to know it was about a house of prostitution?!  I was only 16!

OK, Mom, it’s over now, you really need to put it behind you.  I seriously doubt that anybody remembers it.

It had good chords!  Do you want to hear me play it?

No!  I mean, maybe some other time, we should really be talking about War now and B.B. Dickerson.

In the early days, the group was called Eric Burdon and War and that’s when “Spill the Wine” came out.  Eric was only, apparently, on three albums.

Who knew?

That’s Eric Burdon front and center

He should really do something with his hair.

and I think B.B Dickerson is in there somewhere.

Second row, 2nd from the left.

War (after Eric Burdon left) is best known for the following: “Low Rider”–which used to be the theme song of the George Lopez Show…

No one cares, Shana!

“Cisco Kid”, “Slippin’ Into Darkness”, “The World is a Ghetto” and “Why Can’t We Be Friends?”.

Great songs, all.  Here’s my favorite, “Slippin’ Into Darkness”.  B.B.’s the one in the glasses, playing bass guitar:



I like “Cisco Kid” and the “World is a Ghetto”.  I never thought I would say I’m sick of a song, but… “Low Rider” is really getting on my nerves!  It got a lot of mileage as theme for the George Lopez Show.

Did I mention that no one cares?

“Why Can’t We Be Friends” is good too.

One more thing I have to point out is that this April marks the 50th anniversary of James Taylor’s


second album, (I knew you were going to do that!) “Mudslide Slim and the Blue Horizon”.

It’s an important album because it spawned his own cover of Carole King’s “You’ve Got A Friend”, which he has frequently performed in concert.  It has other good ones though; “Mud Slide Slim”, “Hey Mister That’s Me Up on the Jukebox” and I would like to point out that “Highway Song” from Mudslide Slim was apparently first released by James’ brother, Alex Taylor, on another album from the same year.  James then ended up putting it on Mudslide Slim, so it’s kind of funny that the same song was released twice.  I’m not familiar with Alex’s version though.

Well, here it is; and I hate to say it, Shana, but, it’s not very good.  James’ version is much better:

I know and I can say that without listening to it, because I’ve heard his brother’s and it’s great!

Poor Alex Taylor died in a plane crash.  You know, it was his kid, Alex’s son, James, that James Taylor wrote “Sweet Baby James” for.

I know that.  I also know…

Oh boy, here it comes!  More useless trivia no one cares about!  (Except for, you know, Linda Santini!)

As I was saying….  I also know that “Enough To Be On Your Way” from “Hourglass” was all about Alex’s death but he used the name “Alice” instead.

Thank you very much, Miss Pedia!  Maybe we should play “Highway Song” by James Taylor now.  And then we can go out with “Mudslide Slim” at the end.

Shana, we really have to start the quiz now.

Who’s in the quiz this time?

Miss Toni Tortilini.


Toni Tortilini

What kind of a name is that?

It’s Italian.

Well, it sounds ridiculous.

It’s a perfectly good name!  This patient has big problems!

What’s wrong with her?

I have no idea!!!!!!


Hi Elaine –

Hi Toni, great hearing from you again.

I don’t know if you keep files,


but I have worked with you in the past

I know.

– once with my daughter (hemorrhage case remedied with Lachesis),

Yes, I remember that; great case!

But today I am asking for acute help.

Please fill out the acute case questionnaire:


Name:  “Toni Tortilini”


Male or Female: Female

Weight: 155

Height: 5’4’’

Date: 4/8/2021

Email Address:    ****

  1. Describe the complaint.

Loss of taste and smell – this happened on April 5th or 6th.  Around the last week of March I had what I thought were tree allergies – itchy eyes developing into eye pressure after a few days, itchy throat, sneezing, and extra fatigue.  By Easter Sunday, I felt like I had a fever although my temp was only 98.9, but I had to be in bed all day.  Only slight stuffy/runny nose.  Same thing on Monday, April 5th.

Leg pain – started around 4am on Tuesday April 6th.   It happens in bed at night and off and on during the day.  I cannot lay down when it flares up, walking brings some relief, but then fatigue sets in.

  1. Etiology–

Possibly due to stress from arguing with my husband combined with traveling — family trip (including the dog), a 5 ½ hour drive to see our oldest daughter and her husband.  A good visit but the stress was probably too much on top of the “allergies” that I thought I had.  I could have been exposed to Covid, but I am not aware of anyone who has it.

  1. Sensation–

This is hard to describe, but the leg pain is like a tightening of the leg muscles – front and back of thighs, calves, butt.  But it swirls around and comes and goes.  Again, walking is usually necessary to alleviate the sensation.

The loss of taste and smell I think speaks for itself.  I think this has been going on for three days now.

  1. Appearance–

My eyes are droopy, especially after being up and about.  Color of skin is normal.

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

Tongue (taste buds), nose, legs

  1. Modalities– This is a fancy word that simply means, “What makes your complaint better or worse”?

My first instinct is to stop breathing and grit through the leg pain.  Tossing and turning in bed does NOT help.  But breathing deeply and walking around helps.  On Sunday, when I felt sick, I needed warmth and hot tea.  Now, warm drink in the morning, and cold drink (lemon, baobab, Vit C in water and mineral water) is better in the afternoon.  Back to hot drinks before bed.  Not very thirsty though.

During the first day of intense leg pain (Tuesday, I think), I found relief in a warm bath.  But as soon as I got out, pain returned.

  1. Concomitants

Fatigue and foggy brain are the main ones.  Today, I felt slight plugging of ears.  Sneezing is occasional.  Crying accompanies intense leg pain.  A scratchy throat and swollen gland on right side of neck show up in the evening.

  1. Discharges–color, odor, consistency and sensation.

I have a slight runny nose that is clear and watery.  My nose burns a little on the inside.

  1. Generals–these are all the symptoms that begin with the word “I”:

I am worried about how long loss of smell will go on.  I am very tired.  I’m weak.  I’m sad and irritable.  I want to be left alone, but feel lonely if alone.  I want quiet.  I am quiet.

  1. The mentals: Is the complaint changing you mentally and emotionally?

It is probably adding more anxiety and depression on top of the usual.  I don’t really want to talk.

  1. What have you been saying?

I am quiet.  But I am THINKING “ Turn off the music.  I want to be at home!  I want to sit in the recliner chair.”

  1. What are you doing?

In bed at night, I sleep until the leg pains start.  Then I toss and turn, moan and groan until I have to get up and walk around.  Sometimes I am able to stay in bed.  I am trying to read during the day, but hard to keep eyes open.  I called a friend for support today.  Managed to help my daughter with her school today at the table.  Had to lay down and rest after an hour.

  1. Describe your thirst and appetite–

I am less thirsty than normal.  I have to have my normal hot Lemon Ginger Green Tea with ½ teaspoon of honey in the morning.  I have been skipping the coffee after breakfast since I’m not sure how it will taste anyway.  I have to have my cold drink after breakfast which is fresh lemon juice, stevia (although I forgot to put it in today and barely noticed!) baobab powder, Vit C, water, and mineral water.  I will make some hot “Throat Coat Tea” in the evening when the scratchy throat comes on.  I have a quart of room temp water sitting on the counter all day.  I might drink half of it.

  1. Fever?

Not much of a fever.  The highest I detected was 98.9

  1. Sweating?

Sweating around 4 or 5am is not new to this illness.  That has been going on for 6 months or so, but not very often.  I take Dr. Schulze Female+ which helps reduce the night sweats. I’m still having regular periods.  I can’t smell anything to detect an odor.

  1. Odors? Are odors an issue in the case?

At the Easter Vigil service, Saturday, April 3rd, at about 10pm, I started smelling smoke and my nose felt irritated.  No one else around me smelled it. That continued until we left the church at 11pm and for the short car ride back to the house we were staying.  I didn’t notice it on Sunday, just woke up feeling very weak and tired.

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

Both the strange leg pains and the loss of smell are very odd.

  1. Is there a diagnosis?


  1. Describe your energy–

Quiet but restless.  Sleepy but cannot sleep during the day.  Generally down and discouraged.  Just typing this email requires great effort.

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

Ummmm it looks like a mixture of red, pink, and white?  I don’t see any cracks.

  1. If you have a cough, please tell what it sounds like.

Little or no cough.  Dry if anything.

  1. If you haven’t already said if you’re hotter or colder than usual, say it now.

I am usually cold, but I might be a bit colder than usual.


Toni, I read your case, and I think you need __________ 30C, 3 times a day, in water, with five succussions before each dose.

Hi, Elaine; I am just getting up this morning.  I feel pretty tired and weak, like I worked hard during the night.  Maybe all that tossing and turning!

I took one dose of _____________ at 11:15pm right before I went to bed, stirring vigorously.  It seems like it is helping a little.  I have a slight improvment in smell.

Stay with ____________ and tell me what tomorrow brings.

OK, so I woke up feeling better.  No leg pain. Clear nose, but some congestion in head.  After being up and about for a couple hours, though, my nose started getting drippy and I got weak.  I am needing to be on the couch, resting.  Should I go back to the ________ 30C three times today?

Yes, don’t hesitate once you relapse, don’t wait around to hear from me; strike back fast with another dose of _________ 30C.  Yes, 3 or 4 times a day.  Take less often as you get better, but take more often if you get worse.

OK, thanks!  I always forget how this works, since I don’t use it that often.  I took a dose at 1:30pm and had some good food.

Write to me tomorrow and give me an update.

OK, whew!  I am feeling well enough to get back to the busy routine of homeschooling and evening activities, at a slower pace with lots of resting, but was able to go to my daughter’s softball game today and my book club tonight.


The gland in my neck (right side) is just a tiny bit swollen now.  My smell is still at about 10% and taste is up to 50%.

I took 3 doses of ___________ today.

I forgot to ask.  The scratchy throat–do you still have it?

No, my throat is no longer scratchy.

Your thirst, is it still less than usual?

Oh, yeah, I forgot to mention!  Monday and Tuesday I was very thirsty.  Thirsty this morning too.

Are you still sad, weak and irritable?

Not it an acute way.

Nose still burning?

Off and on.

Still sneezing?

Just a couple times a day.

Itchy eyes?

Sort of.

Itchy throat?

No, not itchy.


Yesterday, I was able to function pretty well with minimal resting periods, so I think the acute fatigue is better.


OK, everybody, that’s it!  Do you know the remedy?  Write to me at [email protected] and tell me what you think.  The answer will be in next month’s ezine.

And now, as promised, “Mudslide Slim”.  In 2019 all of his albums released on Warner Brothers were remastered, which I think is really cool.



Happy Birthday, Shana–April 22nd!


Elaine Lewis, DHom, CHom

Elaine takes online cases. Write to her at [email protected]

Visit her website:

About the author

Elaine Lewis

Elaine Lewis, D.Hom., C.Hom.
Elaine is a passionate homeopath, helping people offline as well as online. Contact her at [email protected]
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: and

Leave a Comment

Homeopathy for Everyone
Learn homeopathy with the world's greatest experts every month - for FREE!
World's No.1 Homeopathy e-Journal - for the community, by the community.
No Thanks!