Case Quizes

Revisiting: The Kids Say I Look Dead!

Did you guess the right remedy? Revisiting: The Kids Say I Look Dead!



What is it???????

Can we possibly get started on the quiz?  I have some important announcements to make!

Well, it seems kinda crazy, but, OK!

The Beatles’ producer, George Martin, died at age 90.


Oh, that is so sad!

Also, guess what else?

Um…don’t tell me, don’t tell me…..  Tell me!

Apparently George Martin also produced “Tin Man” and “Sister Golden Hair” for America.

Shana, trust me, no one knows who “America” is.


They’re a rock group similar to The Eagles.  Anyway, he also produced the Paul McCartney solo album “Pipes of Peace” which has my favorite duet with Michael Jackson, “Say Say Say”.

That’s it?  That’s your report on George Martin?

What’s wrong with my report?

It’s rather thin.  You haven’t begun to explain his relevance!  He was called “the 5th Beatle”.  The Beatles were rejected by every record producer their manager, Brian Epstein, took them to, even by George Martin himself, who told Brian that their songs weren’t very good.  And by the way, that was true, Shana, they really weren’t very good!  But Brian Epstein looked so sad that George Martin said, “Well, OK, I’ll give them an hour.”  So the Beatles auditioned for George Martin who still didn’t like their material but liked them personally; so, he picked out their best song, which was “Love Me Do”, and said, “You’re going to have to do better than this.”  And with that admonishment, guess what?  They did!  George Martin came up with all the great production ideas, all the innovations, there would be no Beatles without George Martin!

Look what I dug up. This is George Martin with Legendary song writer and Beach Boys member, Brian Wilson.  Here they take apart the tracks on Brian’s brilliant number, “God Only Knows”.


Thanks, Mom.  That was a much needed addition to my report!  In other news, former Rolling Stones member Bill Wyman has been diagnosed with cancer.

Well that is sad!

I hope he gets better soon.

If he’s going for chemo and radiation, all I have to say is, good luck!

And finally, I just wanna mention my favorite show, “The Originals”, got picked up for a fourth season.

Too bad no one cares.

Who’s in the quiz this month?

You remember Gabi from Canada, right?  She’s got the flu.

But not anymore, thanks to you, right Mom?

Well, I guess we’ll soon find out!


In a message dated 3/7/2016 6:44:59 P.M. Eastern Standard Time, gabi**** writes:

Elaine, I have been sick for a number of days. I can’t get over it. Wanna take my case?

Well, I don’t know………It’s a bit unorthodox…..

Thank you, I’m so tired of being sick and tired!


Acute Case Questionnaire

  1. Onset–

It started after an argument I had with a student at work. It escalated. I was called into the director’s office. I felt humiliated, dependent, depressed.

  1. Etiology–the cause:

The incident with the student. I cut milk out of my diet. Since the gall bladder surgery, everything upsets my stomach, gets me bloated, but the incident got the left kidney painful and I spent two days in bed without being able to get up.

  1. Sensation–

It feels like punching and squeezing and the pain on my head feels like an unbearable jack-hammer, can’t even open my eyes!

It started as a kidney complaint (treated with Berberis 10 M) now it’s a headache at the top of the head, then moves to the front (now), earache after I am outside, I took Lachesis 200c and fell asleep on the floor today. Cramps if I eat.

  1. Appearance–

I have black bags under my eyes and my skin is very dry, had a cold sore on my lips and inside my mouth that’s gone (took sulphur), very pale, kids say I look dead.

  1. Location–

Everywhere as I am achy everywhere, shins, lower back…

  1. Modalities–

Better: Warmth, sleeping, being alone in silence, quiet, dark. Worse: noise, touch, light, company.

  1. Concomitants —

I am depressed, said I wanted to die on the weekend, feel useless, tired of being sick.

  1. Discharges–

No discharges

  1. Generals–

Cold and sometimes hot; thirsty, sad, irritable, not hungry and nausea in the mornings.

  1. The mentals:

I am very depressed feel like my life has no meaning…

  1. What are you saying?

Leave me alone.

  1. Thirst–

I drink tea all day (yerba mate) and water with lemon the rest of the day. I am more thirsty in the evenings.

  1. Fever?

I am warmer than usual, feels like a feverish state.

  1. Sweating?

Yes, i wake up drenched in sweat some mornings, I uncover at night, drool, sleep with my mouth open, wake up often.

  1. Odors?

Sweat is strong in the morning, not foul, acrid.

  1. What is most striking about the condition?

I am cold and want to be covered but then I pull the covers off; the headache doesn’t get better so I simply want to sleep it off but it returns as I wake up.

  1. Is there a diagnosis?

No but I’ve been having thoughts of serious illnesses…


OK, take a dose of ______________ and let me know what happens.

In a message dated 3/8/2016 2:13:47 P.M. Eastern Standard Time, gabi**** writes:

Elaine, it’s working. …doing better and repeating as needed. I’ve had 3 doses so far, repeating when I start to relapse. I am doing the 30c…Thank you, I was in a hole…you took me out!!!

How long have you had this illness?

Two weeks! I took the first dose, nothing happened after 10 minutes so I put the remedy in a water bottle, succussed 10 times, and it worked!

Good thinking, Gabi!  How soon did you notice improvement?


What? Really??? What got better?

Jack-hammer headache! I feel more calm, less desperate, less depressed, mentals have significantly improved, headache is going away slowly…I don’t look like death anymore. I haven’t been this sick in a long time. Thank you so much, Elaine!!!!! The headache was unbearable.

Sounds like the flu to me!


P.S. Gabi just wrote to me.  In an unexpected turn, the 30C stopped working and she completely relapsed!  Luckily, I had sent her the 200C!  She took it and she’s fine now.  I bring this up to remind you of an important lesson I have raised repeatedly:  If you don’t take the trouble to buy the higher potencies of our polychrest remedies, this is what can happen to you!!!!  People mistakenly think the high potencies are for chronic and constitutional cases and the low potencies are for anything physical, like acutes–because “physical” means “surface” which means “shallow”, which means a “shallow potency”.  I just hope this illustration shows the fallacy in that reasoning!  The high potencies are for any complaint that’s intense and recent!  Acutes are almost always intense!  And though 30C may work at the outset, it may not hold!  And if you don’t have your 200’s and 1M’s in reserve, you could find yourself up a creek without a paddle!  (Also, I hope you took note of the fact that the 30C in water with succussions was stronger than the 30C dry pellets.) Here’s what Gabi wrote:



Elaine, _____________ is working. Simply that the case started all over again! It was good the higher potency was here to take care of it. I’m fine again 🙂


So, OK everybody, what do you think the remedy was?  Write to me at [email protected] and let me know; we’ll have the answer for you in next month’s ezine.

Bye, see ya next time!






Nux vomica-2



Hello everybody!  Are we all here?  Do we have a volunteer to go first?  Oh my goodness!  Its a new face!  And from Slovakia, at that!

Hi Elaine,

I was really curious about the medicine in your Quiz so I started to do the repertorisation and on first places I had Cham, Rhus tox, Lachesis and Carb-v which I wasn´t happy with.  Then it struck me that the feeling of coldness but not wanting covers is the key symptom for Camphor (well, also for Carb-v) and I felt that the other symptoms suit Camphor as well.

Am I right about the remedy, was it Camphor?

Well, you are now my third quiz participant from Slovakia!  Pretty soon I will have my own Slovakia fan club!  Well, Adriana, you are right about one thing–it WAS all about the covers!  Yes!  That’s when I spotted the remedy!  BUT, you misread Gabi’s words.  She didn’t throw the covers off despite being cold (Camphor), she threw them off because she was hot!  She was cold, grabbed the covers, then all of a sudden she was too hot and threw them off!  As soon as I saw that, I knew it as a keynote of….. what remedy?


No, Suphur would just be hot and throw the covers off.  Especially their feet would be burning.  There would be none of this hot, cold, hot, cold.

Actually I don´t know which rubrik I would use for this condition.

You would not go to “Generals: covers”, you would go to “Generals: temperature” and the subrubrics “change of temperature agg.” and “heat and cold agg.”

… Now I doubt everything!  Who are the other two colleagues from Slovakia?

Miroslav and Jitka.  They answer every time, you should get to know them, I’m sure they’re here somewhere… Now, which remedy is famous for not being able to find the ideal temperature where they’re neither too hot nor too cold?

I have only found these rubrics:


GENERALS – COLD – heat and cold



and there are still few possibilities, I would think of Mercury this time because she doesn´t tolerate neither extreme of temperature but it doesn´t come up in repertorisation in first places so I feel lost.  Maybe I´ll have to wait one month.  I was so excited with Camphor and I feel let down…

Adriana, you are right, it is Mercury!  Here is the problem people are having with case-solving in general: They think they have to repertorize everything they see, including things like “dark circles under the eyes”, “Pain on waking”, “Earache worse outside”, etc. …and before you know it, they’ve got a list of 10 or 20 symptoms and they assume the winning remedy will go all the way through, and are often dismayed when they come out with a very spotty, inconclusive chart!

Why does this happen?  For one thing, treating every symptom as though it were equal with all the others!  Well, that’s just not true.

So what do we have to do then?  First of all, we have to get the big picture.  Is this really an “ailments from mortification” or “ailments from anger” case?  Even though Gabi went on and on about it, what do we actually see here?  We see the flu!  This is a flu case if ever there was one!  And what is her flu characterized by?  That’s the question!  Well, you said it–it’s all about the covers: too hot and too cold, covers on, covers off, and what remedy do we think of when we see this?  Mercury!  And then we ask ourselves, “Does anything else in this case go for Mercury?”  Well yes, since you ask!  The famous Mercury sweating and Mercury drooling!  What more could we ask for?

So, generally speaking, we need to get the larger picture (what’s wrong) and then we need to find the “characteristic symptoms”.  Is “bags under the eyes” a characteristic symptom?  No!  Anyone this sick would have some issue like that–dark circles around the eyes, etc.  The fact that she has the flu explains that symptom.

Anything that having the flu explains, is not a characteristic symptom, and we do not need to worry about it or repertorize it.

We’re interested only in what’s characteristic, by which I mean–

striking, strange, rare and peculiar.  That’s it.

Thank you very much for conclusion, I really appreciate it.  You are right, it is easy to get lost in symptoms.

It was a good lecture for me.  Looking forward to next quiz and wishing you wonderful days.

Thank you for sharing.

Love and light from Slovakia



Well, that was fun, wasn’t it?  Meeting someone new?  Is anybody else here?  Is the caller there?  Hello!  You’re on the air at

Hi Elaine!

It’s my soul brother from Australia!

I think the symptoms of the patient lead to Bryonia, so I am voting for Bryonia.

I can understand why you would do that, she says she can’t open her eyes due to the headache.  I also thought of Bryonia when I saw that.  But, down further, here’s what I saw in the questionnaire:

Cold and sometimes hot; …
14. Sweating?
Yes, i wake up drenched in sweat some mornings, I uncover at night, drool, sleep with my mouth open, wake up often.
15. Odors?
Sweat is strong in the morning…

  1. What is most striking about the condition?
    I am cold and want to be covered but then I pull the covers off…

What, in short, do we have here?  Hot and cold, hot and cold.  Excessive perspiration.  Smells bad.  Drools.  Cold, so she covers up, then she throws the covers off.  What remedy does that?

Now I think it’s Mercury.  By the way, I liked your classification of Donald Trump – true to form.

Oh, you mean Tidbits 37?  “Let’s Look At Lachesis”?  Thanks, I loved writing it!

Regards Wayne


And speaking of Slovakia….

Hello Elaine and Shana!


here are our answers to the Quiz of March:

Miroslav responds very briefly that:

The etiology of the case (ailments from humiliation), and the other symptoms

suggest the remedy for Gabi was Nat-muriaticum.

Um…actually, if I were going to go with ‘ailments from humiliation’?  I think I might have picked Staphysagria.  The problem here is that even though Gabi’s humiliating day may have kicked all this off?  Clearly, she came down with the flu; and not only that, she’s got keynotes of a remedy that go with it.  Now, did anybody read my article called “Case-Solving”?

Tidbits 34–Homeopathy: Case-Solving

In it I said:

“The stronger the etiology, the less important the symptoms are.  On the other hand, if the symptoms are significant and clear, what does the etiology matter?”

This case is a perfect illustration of that.  We have an “etiology”, to be sure!  BUT, what is more compelling?  What carries more weight, the so-called etiology, or the fact that she now has the flu with keynotes of a remedy?  To me, the fact that she had the flu with a clear remedy picture over-rode the presumed etiology.  What remedy picture is this?  What is Peculiar?  What is Characteristic?  The headache?  It would be hard to imagine a flu without a headache; though at first glance, I was considering Bryonia because of the severity of the headache.  But then I read further, and what came to light was a cascade of Mercury symptoms: Sweating, drooling, bad odor of perspiration; hot and cold by turns.  So, I gave Mercury.

Jitka: My first thought after reading your new quiz was Natrum Muriaticum.  I consider the most important symptoms of the case – ailments from rudeness and severe headaches as if hammering.

Again, here is the problem.  The headache is there because she has the flu, it’s not headache from rudeness.

Mind; symptoms follow intense emotions; ailments from rudeness;

Mind, company aversion to

Who?  Are you referring to the kids?  Kids are no company!  They’re selfish, they’re not nurturing!  Gabi wants quiet, she has a severe headache which is worse for noise.  If a symptom (aversion to company) makes sense, it’s not a symptom.

Mind, loathing, life (See Desires, Death)

When you’ve got the flu, who doesn’t desire death?  Remember, if a symptom makes sense, it’s not a symptom.

Head, pain, hammering

Head, pulsating, brain, beating of, hammers, like little

Not little hammers–BIG hammers!  But you can be misled by this symptom because all people with the flu have headaches, and usually really bad ones!

I keep my fingers crossed let “Birdie” win the elections….:)

Yes, YAY “Birdie” Sanders!  Shana just came back from a Bernie rally tonight at Temple University!  If Bernie doesn’t win the nomination, you’re going to have to carry me out of here on a stretcher!

Thank you for revising our answers, we can understand solving cases a little better again.  Maybe you will not believe me, but even though my first thought and, ultimately the last, was Natrum mur, I strongly pondered Mercurius precisely because of significant symptoms, but at last I preferred etiology.  Now I can see it as nonsense, but I was not quite sure if Gabi had the flu.



Is anybody else here?  Dr. Salma Afroz from Bangladesh!  Come on down!!!!!

Hello Elaine,

The most striking and peculiar of the condition is that she is saying “I am cold and want to be covered but then I
pull the covers off”

saying “leave me alone”

ailments from depression and humiliation

Irritable temperament, worse from noise, touch, light, company and better by sleeping, being alone in silence, quiet, dark

All indicates nux vomica 30 is the medicine

Salma, Nux v. would never throw the covers off, they are very cold and very sensitive to the slightest draft of air.

Now, remember, when a symptom is “normal”, it’s not a symptom.  So, saying, “Leave me alone!” to her kids is something any mother would say if she was sick!  Kids are no help at all, they’re selfish, they want things no matter how sick you are, which turns them into very annoying little monsters.  Therefore, her “Leave me alone” statement means nothing, we’d all react the same way.  The possible etiology of “ailments from humiliation” gave way after it was clear she had the flu with all the common symptoms–muscle aches, bone aches, headache, etc.  Now we need a flu remedy and our only task then is to discern what remedy keynotes we find in this flu.  You are right in saying that the most peculiar symptom in the case is, “I’m cold so I put the blanket on, then I throw it off!”  What remedy does this?  If you know the answer to that, you know the remedy.

Thank you Elaine for correcting me.  You are right.  It’s Bryonia which has external cold but due to internal heat she kicks off covering.

Bryonia was my first thought, but then as I read further, all these keynotes of a certain remedy jumped out at me–too cold alternating with too hot, profuse sweating, bad smelling perspiration, drooling. What do you think now?

Now it seems like Mercurius

Yes!  That is correct!

Thanks Elaine.  I never thought mercurius would help in such acute case of flu with bursting headache.

It wasn’t a bursting headache, it was more of a hammering headache.  Mercury is in italics in the Influenza rubric in Murphy’s Repertory; but, just about any flu is going to have a bad headache.  Headache, being a common symptom of the flu, isn’t going to be too useful to us as a symptom, just like “muscle aches” wouldn’t be useful to us either.  We have to look for what’s uncommon about this flu and we have to remember to ask ourselves if what we think are “symptoms” are actually explainable by the fact that a person has a certain illness.

For example, anyone with a bad headache is going to be worse for light and noise–and worse for any company that isn’t supportive.  You know, a lot of us just aren’t thinking when we take a case because we’re too busy trying to find the remedy.  “Oh, she said, ‘Leave me alone!’ therefore, she’s ‘worse comany’!”  No, no, no!  Who is she telling this to?  Her kids!  Are kids sympathetic and nurturing?  No!  They’re a pain in the neck!  A lot of the symptoms we pick to repertorize aren’t really symptoms at all.

In one of my quizzes, the patient, a boy, had a sore throat and was spitting.  Of course, everyone thought that was a dynamite symptom and looked it up.  I said, “He’s spitting because it hurts him to swallow, he can’t swallow!”  So, a symptom that looked very peculiar was, in fact, explainable by the pathology.  If a symptom is explainable, it’s not a symptom.

Thanks, Elaine.


Salma Afroz

Dhaka, Bangladesh


I think we might have time for one more quiz answer.  Hey, everybody, Vamsi’s in the house!!!!!


Another challenging one from you. 🙂

I hope I still have time to answer the quiz.

Yes, fire away!

Ok, let me rush before you close the entries for this, another wonderful one.

According to me, Gabi’s mental symptoms are the most ruling here.  It all started after she had an argument with the student.

According to Kent,

“The impressions made upon the mind and thence upon the body guide to Staphysagria as a remedy.

Suitable in cases where complaints come from pent up wrath, suppressed anger, suppressed feelings.  The person becomes speechless from suppressed indignation, anger with indignation.  Complaints brought on by these causes; irritable bladder with frequent urging to urinate, lasting many days after suppressed wrath, after insults.”

He has sleepless nights and many days of fatigue, brain-fag; for days and weeks he cannot add nor subtract, makes mistakes in writing and speaking, has irritability of the bladder, colic, etc.”

I read from your quiz its a flu, but Elaine is it not that the complaints started after she had the argument?  I would go for Staphysagria for Gabi.

Please let me know.

Well, Vamsi, I can certainly understand why you picked Staphysagria.  But did you read my article, “Tidbits 34–Homeopathy: Case-Solving”?  See below:

“There’s no one method of prescribing that we should be adhering to dogmatically. Constitutional prescribing is the norm, but makes no sense if the patient is suffering!

If the etiology is clear, does the totality of symptoms matter?  If a person is hit on the arm or hit in the head, aren’t we going to give Arnica anyway, regardless of the differences in the symptoms?  The stronger the etiology, the less we care about the totality of symptoms.

On the other hand, if the symptoms are unmistakable, what does the etiology matter?  A Spongia cough?  A Phosphorus thirst for ice cold drinks?  The round swelling of Apis?  Who cares what the etiology is!

You have to be flexible.

If you see keynotes of a remedy, give the remedy.  If you see a remedy picture, give the remedy.

Learn to see what’s striking and compelling about a case and adjust your approach accordingly.”

Tidbits 34–Homeopathy: Case-Solving

So, the reason I brought this up was to make the point that even though I know I always say “etiology over-rules symptomatology”, I think there’s a murky area here.  Can a Staphysagria state cause the flu?  Is it possibly just a coincidence that Gabi had this awful confrontation with superiors and then soon thereafter contracted the flu?  Is it possible one had nothing to do with the other?  Now, if Gabi just had a headache, and I said, “When did it start?” and she said, “After I got yelled at,” then Staphysagria looks really good for that.  But not only do I have to ask myself if a Staphysagria state can cause the flu, I also have to ask myself if I can just ignore the remedy keynotes that I see in this case!  And I didn’t think I could.

Well, gang, we don’t exactly have a winner this time, but, as The Brothers of Soul said in 1968, “I Guess That Don’t Make Me A Loser”!


See ya next time!
Elaine Lewis, D.Hom., C.Hom.

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

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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

About the author

Shana Lewis

Shana spices up the Hpathy Quiz with her timely announcements and reviews on the latest in pop culture. Her vast knowledge of music before her time has inspired the nickname: "Shanapedia"!

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