Clinical Cases

A Case of Cactina

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Italics are mine.

M. D., 24 August 2002

D: Tell me everything that is happening.

P: I have a very bad cold and all this below my chin and all this on my eye and eyebrows start paining very badly.  Cold is not coming out also but have watery cold and I am getting bad cough and my throat keeps aching me.  I only get this very bad pain. I get headache also sometimes, which comes like an attack and goes.

D: Describe that headache.

P: Like I am walking on the road, suddenly as if a wind has come and like that it aches, just comes like that. I can’t walk properly if I am on the road, I can’t walk.  It just pains me, like it comes suddenly on the road.

D: So describe this, how it comes, suddenly what you said?

P: I don’t know, suddenly if I am walking, most of the times when I go to the shop or something, this pain comes only from this side, from ears it come. It pains very badly.

D: So headache comes like an attack you said, can you describe this attack?

P: Can’t say, that’s what I said, it just comes like this and I can’t, I don’t know what happens, I can’t walk only and my eyes feel sleepy.

D: Describe that pain.

P: Pain comes like something is poking me. It pains here this part; something is poking me like that.

D: Poking meaning?

P: As if somebody taking a pin or something is poking me, some hard thing like that.

D: Describe the word poking.

P: I don’t know because that pains me so badly, I press my head like that, it subsides but if I leave it, again that poking pain comes very badly.

D: Describe the word poking?

P: Can’t say anything.  Like it just comes, as if somebody is hitting me on my head or something, it’s like somebody is knocking me on my head.

D: ‘Hitting me’ meaning?

P: As if I have done something wrong and somebody comes and bashes me on my head.

D: You have ‘done something wrong’ meaning? What have you done?

P: I have not done anything but as if normally like I say that I have done something, I robbed somebody’s things and all. If I have done something naughty or suppose I have done something wrong and my mother comes and shouts at me. Suppose she is very angry and she hits me, like that I feel. Like it just hits me like a typhoon comes and destroys everything, like that it comes.

D: How does a typhoon come and destroy everything?

P: I just gave an example; it comes like a sudden jerk. Like on Thursday I went to my maid’s house and I was walking down the big huge steps, suddenly I got that attack,  when I came down it came like a jerk on my head and it started paining very badly. And then I had to wait for about 5-10 minutes.  When I come down there were lots of steps to come down.

D: Describe the word jerk.

P: I don’t know the meaning..  Suppose it comes like a certain attack, it has come like that on my head.

D: Describe the word jerk; what is the feeling in that jerk?

P: I don’t know, I feel like my brain is just moving inside like that, like I came down, as if my brain bounced and went on top.

D: Bounced meaning?

P: Suppose it came like a ball, like it came down and went on top. That day I was feeling it like that. It just came as if my brain is moving inside, I thought it was moving fast inside.

D: Describe moving inside.

P: As if somebody is playing basketball, like how you bounce your ball and take it. I thought brain is also went like that.

D: Playing basketball meaning?

P: How you bounce the ball when you play basketball, when I took a step down right, I felt like my brain has just come down and gone on top like that.

D: What’s the feeling as if?

P: I get a hit on my head like that I feel. It’s like a hit.

D: What experience do you get?

P: Like somebody is hitting you on your head or somebody gives you a knock on your head.

D: When you say knock on your head meaning? What is knock?

P: How you get a pain if somebody hits on your head, as if somebody does like that on your head, if you knock, somebody knocks your head with knuckles and you get the pain, like that the pain comes.

D: What is the sensation?

P: The pain comes from inside, but not outside, from inside it comes.

D: What is the pain from inside?

P: I don’t know, I feel like something is hurting me inside my skull and something is hurting me inside. I don’t know what happens, sometimes I just close my eyes and rest and after 10-15 minutes that pain goes like that.

D: How is it hurting?

P: My brain, as if something is happening to my brain that way, like my brain is almost shrinking, like when I’m breathing, (Hand gesture) like how the heartbeats, like that I feel. The brain is also beating inside.

D: What is shrinking?

P: It’s how the heart is beating every second (makes the beating sound of the heart) dhak…. dhak…. dhak…dhak……

D: What does this signify?

P: It’s like it’s enlarging. It’s like I am taking a breath. It’s like when I am taking in breath the stomach becomes big and when I am taking out breath the stomach goes in, like that I feel in my brain.

D: Describe the word shrinking.

P: From a bigger size it becomes smaller and smaller and again it becomes bigger.  (Hand gesture)

D: You are describing it very well just continue. Describe shrinking.

P: I feel like breathing. It’s like my brain is becoming bigger and then becoming smaller.

D: Describe this becoming bigger and becoming smaller?

P: I don’t know what to say. My brain goes down like that and comes on the top like that. If I catch my head tight the pain subsides. I leave it for sometime and the pain comes back again. Suddenly when I get a pain I feel my brain is becoming smaller and bigger.  (Hand gesture)

Suddenly the pain starts becoming smaller and bigger.

D: Can you describe this further? Describe smaller.

P: I feel like brain is becoming smaller like that (HG) and then from round it becomes like that (HG) smaller and then again it becomes bigger (HG).

D: What is the feeling when the brain becomes smaller and bigger?

P: I will just give an example. I just take a pillow and keep it on the head and press the head.

D: Describe this sensation further.

P: I don’t know; the attack comes suddenly. In the day the attack comes two to three times. Suddenly the attack comes and that time I take a tablet and it goes away.

D: How does the attack feel?

P: It’s like somebody giving a knock with the knuckles. I keep pressing and it goes, the pain keeps coming for 15-20 minutes.

D: What is the effect of this pain on you?

P: I don’t know. The pain comes in such a way that I keep forgetting the answer. I forget whatever I have studied. The brain is becoming smaller and becoming bigger. (HG).

Suddenly it becomes smaller and it starts enlarging.

D: Starts enlarging?

P: It becomes bigger – bigger -bigger…like that.  (HG)

D: Describe the word becoming smaller. Forget your brain.

P: I feel its shrinking and again coming to its normal size. Like if you are born and then you become bigger and bigger. From baby size to bigger size.

Again example of brain becoming smaller…

D: Getting bigger?

P: Becoming larger (HG). Somebody is filling something in the brain and it’s getting larger and larger.

One more example balloon getting bigger/ larger?? When air is blown inside. And gets smaller when air is…released.

The headache comes in attack.

D: Describe becoming smaller.

P: Feel I am shrinking, it’s shrinking and then again it’s coming to its normal size, that’s what I feel like if you are born you become bigger and bigger then again you become a baby, like that I feel.

It becomes smaller then it comes back to its normal size. Suppose my brain is round it becomes smaller again, it comes back to its normal round shape. Coming to normal size; becoming larger and larger;

Something is filling in my brain, like you have a bag and you fill it, it becomes bigger, like that my brain becomes bigger.

D: Describe this.

P: Like a balloon is small and you keep on blowing it, becomes normal and when you remove the air it comes to its normal size, it is in the same way.

D: How does that feel?

P: It’s a pain. I feel brain is moving inside my skull, its touching my skull becoming bigger and smaller.

D: How do you feel about it?

P: Pain comes suddenly, doesn’t rest for sometime. If pain comes and I keep pressing my head and rush for sometime to rest, I keep a cushion behind me so that the pain subsides little bit, if I remove the cushion it pains more. It comes like a harsh pain.

D: Harsh?

P: Somebody pressing me, hitting me hardly.

Not pressing but hitting me hardly.

D: ‘Hitting hardly’, what happens?

P: I don’t like, suddenly, if I keep pressing pain subsides, like if I have a wound, I press it then it will subside but when I open it, it catches air and burns so it pains more.

D: What dreams do you get, any one you remember?

P: I had lot of dreams of having a sports car. I feel I am in the sports car; I am in the formula race. I am coming first and then I get a big house and money. I just feel that I am enjoying, I go out with my friends. Sometimes I get a dream about wanting to become a scientist, all ambitious dreams I get.

D: Describe that dream about formula car.

P: As if I am becoming the greatest man in the world like Michael Schumacher, he comes first in the formula racing, like that I also feel that I am coming first in the race.

D: What is ‘greatest man’?

P: Like becoming famous in the world; coming first; becoming a rich man, richest man in the world.

D: Feeling?

P: Happy. Sometimes I feel I am very great, proud.

D: What other dreams do you get?

P: Nothing, all ambitious, like to be a cricketer, scientist.

D: You are a scientist meaning?

P: Normally people ask me what I will become then I always say I want to become a scientist. Like to invent many things. I even observed that I have lot of cars I still play with; I keep observing how to make them. I have a book on how to make an aeroplane and I want to become a pilot, something you can invent.

D: If you get a chance, what will you invent?

P: Invent small. Smallest thing in the world like the smallest car or something like that.

D: Which is the smallest?

P: Smart; Toyota.

D: Why do you want to invent small?

P: I also should become famous in the world, keep-inventing things.

D: Why do you want to invent smallest cars?

P: I have an ambition. I love cars from childhood, I feel like inventing when I grow big.

D: What is the feeling in inventing the smallest car?

P: I become something great by inventing the smallest car, great person in the world.

D: Great meaning?

P: All people know me and will adore me.

D: Any other dreams?

P: Cricket. I go for cricket coaching in school but I feel that I got selected for the team and I play like Sachin Tendulkar (Indian cricketer), I become like him. He is so famous, so I feel I am also famous like him. He is doing so many advertisements; even I will get to do.

D: So what is there in being famous, great?

P: People will keep praising you and adore you. Praise you like you are so rich…

D: What other dreams?

P: One day my friend telling me when we grow big we’ll make dog pounds, will make a house for stray dogs and keep them. I said ok because even I like it.

D: You like dogs?

P: I had a dog he died.

D: What do you like about dogs?

P: They are nice, so friendly, I love it when they come, sniff you and curl you near your legs. They are very sporty, keep running from one place to other, jumping, like I should play with my dogs, she used to come running and jump over me.

D: Any other dreams, scary?

P: Not scary. I don’t see anything scary on TV.

D: If you have to draw what would you like to draw?

P: Sceneries, cars, jet cars. Landscape.

D: What kind of?

P: Leaves, water from there, sunrise, sunset.

D: What other hobbies do you have?

P: Singing. I like to sing, sometime old, sometimes new.

D: Any one incident where you were very touched?

P: Once my aunt was pulling my cheeks, my dog just came and bit her because she touched my cheeks, she thought she is pinching me and then my grandfather left him somewhere, I didn’t like it.

I just felt like crying.

If you have a pet, it is good to play with if no friends; now nobody to play with.

I love animals. Most cats I don’t like, they are too fussy.

D: Fussy?

P: They eat milk and fish and when you give them they refuse to have and keep biting your shoes, keep scratching you.

D: You mentioned typhoon coming and destroying it, describe that.

P: It hurts like typhoon comes and attacks you.

D: How does it pain?

P: Pains me, brain keeps shrinking.

D: Describe the word shrink more.

P: Becomes smaller and then again it becomes bigger, comes to its normal size; same with my size, like a balloon.

D: What is the feeling in becoming smaller?

P: On and off keeps coming.

D: Why do you want to invent the smallest car?

P: People are inventing big cars, that day I saw a man on TV, with 5 wheels it moves, why don’t I invent the small car?

D: How small?

P: Like a Santro, it will even be a bit flat and smaller. Almost like a racing car, you can put in a bag and also sit in it.

Patient’s mother:

D: Would you like to say something about him?

M: When studies are concerned he studies but reproduction of the studies is very bad in his papers.

Concentration is not there and he wanders away. First five minutes he is there and then he is off. More concerned about others than about himself like if your children are fighting he will go and mix in them; he will create problems for himself. Very loving, sensitive like if I shout at him he doesn’t like it, becomes aggressive. He loves his sister a lot but he fights with her over little things, beats her, argues and then always says, “You love my sister more than you love me!”

Follow up on 27 June 2003:

D: So how are you?

P: I feel much better in the frequency and intensity of the problem I had come for a year ago.

The last time I got a headache was about six months ago and the pains are bearable. It was not that intense as it used to get.

D: So what difference it has made to you the headache being better?

P: I feel more relaxed overall and that is a nice feeling, I cannot express it in words but it makes me much at ease. I had described to you as if something coming suddenly, like a typhoon coming in my head; now it doesn’t feel like that anymore, as the problem is not there so I don’t feel that anymore. (He smiles).

D: So what is the feeling now?

P: Very much relaxed. Calmer. Stillness not like waves, (Hand gesture)  It’s not easy to experience when I don’t have the problem anymore. I feel before because of the headache I couldn’t concentrate on my studies and that would make me feel sad. Now its opposite as the pain in the nerves of my brain are so better that I am feeling happy about them.

D: Any dreams?

P: No dreams at all. Cannot recollect. I remember getting a pleasant dream but don’t know which one.

The mother who had accompanied him conveyed that he has been much at ease and more relaxed, as his pains are better. He is doing well in his studies and sits for long hours without feeling distracted. He gets less agitated with friends. More calm.

He has repeated the remedy twice in the whole year, once after three months and then after nine months and he responded well to Cactina 30C.

Cactina belongs to the Cactaceae family of plant kingdom in union with the acute miasm.
In Cactaceae, there is a marked sensitivity shown towards the vital sensation of constriction, getting smaller, shrinking, etc which is paired up with the opposite expressions such as expansion, becoming bigger, released etc.
The vital sensation of Cactaceae as described by Dr.Rajan Sankaran is as follows-

Vital Sensation:

Constricted,
Made smaller,
Shrunk,
Contracted,
Bound, trapped, pressed, downtrodden, oppressed, clutched, weighed down.

Passive reaction:

Trapped

Active reaction:

Expansion,
Becoming bigger,
Boundless and released.

Compensation:

Not affected by constriction and oppressed.

In the given case, the vital sensation experienced by the patient not only points towards the sensitivity of the plant kingdom in general, but also towards Cactaceae in particular. The following expressions of the patient point towards Cactaceae-

• Brain is almost shrinking, like breathing, (Hand gesture)
• Brain is becoming bigger and then becoming smaller.
• Suddenly the pain starts becoming smaller and bigger.
• Somebody is filling something in the brain and it’s getting larger and larger.
• Balloon getting bigger/ larger when air is blown inside. And gets smaller when air is released.
• I become something great by inventing the smallest car, great person in the world.

This same vital sensation came up evidently in quite different but interesting form, in all of his interests and hobbies. His talk about becoming big, very big, great, greatest like Michael Schumacher, Sachin Tendulkar etc depicted his sensitivity towards big, great, large, expansion, etc.

Also, various images used to describe the attack of headache (typhoon come and destroy, somebody hitting and hurting head, etc) finally lead to the same vital sensation.

Miasm:
His expression of pain coming suddenly, comes like an attack and goes, like a wind, like a typhoon coming and destroying etc., speak of acute miasm.

Hence, he received Cactina and responded well to the remedy.

End of the case.

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Sudheer Baldota

Sudheer Baldota

Sudheer Baldota

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