Illustrative Case No. 5
“If you learn only the method, you’ll be tied to your method. But if you learn the principles, you can devise your own method.”
The foundation of case-receiving lies in the search, not for the right answers, but for the significant questions. You need to learn to ask those questions, and the answers to them will reveal the identity of the disease state. So imbibe the principles and the method will follow. Yes, there is no singular method, but there are singular principles around which many methods can be devised.
This is a case of a one month old baby boy, suffering from infantile eczema.
Observation: He started crying on entering the consulting chamber and the mother immediately commented that it was quite cold inside as compared to outside, which was quite warm, rather hot and he was fine!
When 3 weeks old, he developed ‘nappy rash’ which became very severe within a week. Also, in a week’s time he developed red, tiny eruptions on scalp and neck. When the mother realized that the rash was spreading very fast, he was brought in for consultation. By then he had big patches of eruptions, which oozed a yellowish, offensive discharge. His hairs were matted together, due to oozing and the eruptions had spread all over his body.
His mother told us that he would get severe itching and as he scratched, there would be oozing and bleeding from the eruptions. The discharge was sticky and yellowish … stiffening the linen. He scratched very violently; so much so that the mother said, “ I can actually get the smell of friction when he scratches.” His body had an odor even after bathing.
There is a strong family history of skin disease in the family. Parents, paternal grandmother and the baby’s elder sister, all suffer from skin disease. He has two elder sisters. The second sister also suffered from severe infantile eczema after birth and is the mother, he is a happy and friendly baby, but due to this eczema and severe itching, he was very uncomfortable and would howl and cry all the time. At night, he was unable to sleep properly due to violent itching.
Observation: The mother was very affectionate and caring; at the same time, very observant. She told us that right from the beginning he loved to be in the sun … he loves warmth! He howls if touched with cold hands or washed with cold water after passing stools.
He really enjoys a warm water bath. He loved to be carried and that too she related to the warmth of her body, as she held him close to her body. Also, he desired to be carried all the time. During pregnancy and even after delivery, she went through a lot of emotional stress and turmoil. She was staying in a joint family with mother-in-law, uncle, and aunt-in-law. Uncle-in-law’s sons had settled abroad and their one daughter, who was married abroad since last 10 years, was going through a very troubled marriage. Ultimately the family had decided to get her and her three children back. For some time she tried to adjust to her sister-in-law and her 3 kids. Her 2 daughters now had to share their room with 3 elder cousins.
Lot of things got shifted into their (parents) room. They started studying in her room. Also, her husband became very busy in getting his cousin’s sister out of a messy divorce. Her sister-in-law was very strong headed and careless and left all the burden of work on her. As time passed, she started getting very stressed and hassled. There was chaos in the house; things were scattered everywhere … there was untidiness all around though she did her best to keep the house neat and clean and put things in their proper place. “There is too much traffic in the house!” … she exclaimed. It really bothered her. Everything was forever out of place. “I have this dirty habit of putting things in place. How much ever I am tired, I can’t relax till I put everything properly in its place. ” She had brought up her daughters also in a very disciplined manner; always putting back their things in the proper place; but her sister in law’s kids were exactly the opposite … “There is so much of encroachment in my privacy”, she felt. The baby was solely breast-feed and that too he wouldn’t suckle because of severe itching. Also, his sleep was extremely disturbed due to itching. Urine, Stools, Perspiration: NIP
After going through the details and understanding the mother’s state during pregnancy, as well as the baby’s characteristic symptoms, we gave him the medicine on the following totality of symptoms.
Rest, when things are not in proper place, cannot
Carried, desires to be.
Cold, in general aggravates.
We gave him Arsenicum Alb. 6 minimum dose and thereafter in deviated doses. He is doing excellent and homoeopathy has done wonders to him, as one can see in the photographs.
What we want to emphasize here is the importance of learning the principles. It will never disappoint you and in the end, the result of this is magical and beautiful. There is no fixed method or ‘sure shot’ method as projected by many homoeopaths nowadays; but if you grasp and master the principles as laid down in the Organon, they will never fail you.