Clinical Cases

A Case of Rheumatic Arthritis or Gout?

Homeopath Dagmar Scholz presents a case of arthritis solved with careful analysis that included consideration of active miasms.

When a much respected homeopathic friend of mine died, I met her best friend who looked for a homeopath to treat her arthritis. She had been treated homeopathically since 1999 but the results shown did not satisfy her.

Saying “hello” to her I noticed that she was hardly able to keep her body in balance when she walked into my practice on March 2012. She avoided shaking hands, as the right hand was swollen and stiff. She is a tall person, a bit overweight, flabby muscles, thin grey hair, wears glasses. Age: 61 years old.

Her actual complaints:

Her right wrist aches. She is unable to hold things in her right hand. The inspection/palpation shows a soft red swelling of the back of the right hand. The middle and ring finger are swollen as well. There is a stiffness of the fingers and therefore she avoids moving them. She complains that she has no power in her hands, no power at all. The pain in her hand is stinging. Her feet are aching as well. For 35 years she has suffered from rheumatic arthritis.

In the morning she needs two hours until she is able to get up. It takes her a long time until she is able to go into the bathroom. On her way to the bathroom she must hold onto something to keep her balance. She is quickly exhausted. She cannot put weigh on her right knee and therefore she has to drag her leg behind her.  She is afraid of going downstairs, as she is afraid of falling. No vertigo. Humidity, bodily exercise and cold worsen her complaints. Only warmth ameliorates.

She craves beer, fatty spicy food and she drinks a lot of coffee (12-15 cups). She does not eat fruits and cannot tolerate peas or beans but craves nuts.  Her bowels move every 1-2 days.  Her skin is dry. She has eczema on her forehead.

She states that she is a coward and a suspicious person. She loves to travel because she wants to meet friends. She loves to be in company but enjoys being on her own as well. She is a friendly and open person.

Family history:

Father: high blood pressure, overweight, suffered from osteoarthritis. He died suddenly at the age of 80.

Mother: depressive and at age 86 died of lung cancer. Her mother had two miscarriages after the birth of the patient. No sisters or brothers.

Grandparents: died of cancer.

Medical records stating (X-Ray) dated March 2012:

There are multiple erosive changes in the area of the hands and forefoot with usures.  Rheumatoid arthritis.  The right knee is swollen. Her left leg is shorter than the right leg and her toes are much shorter on her right foot.

Laboratory findings : uric acid – normal.

Medical history:

Nose:  2 operations because of infections of the paranasal sinuses.  From time to time she has hay fever.

Lungs: bronchiectasis treated with antibiotics years ago. No problems at the moment.

Locomotor system: see above and gonarthritis 2009 right knee.

Repertory: (translation from German into English)

Remedy Mercurius Colchicum Causticum Arsenicum Bryonia Sulph. Rhus-t.
Total 18 15 14 14 14 14 14
Rubrics 7 6 7 6 6 6 5
Mind: Travel, loves to 2 1 1
Extremities: pain in the limbs, rheumatic 2 3 3 3 3 3 3
Extremities: pain in the limbs, stinging 2 2 1 2 2 2



General: warmth amel. 3 2 3 3 2 2 2
General: moving agg. 2 3 1 2 3 2 3
General:Syphilis* 4 2 2 2 2
Extremities: pain, gout, joint 3 3 3 2 3 3 3



Syphilis: her gonarthritis is a miasmatic sign of syphilis which her family history (osteoarthritis of the father/miscarriages mother) confirms as well as her inherent short leg and short toes.

I decided to start with Colchicum because I found a notice in my colleague’s files that she suspected the patient had gout (Homeopathy for Gout), but without taking this idea into her prescriptions. I thought about the “gout” idea and came to the conclusion that the patient might have an acute gout attack.  According to Robin Murphy’s repertory (P. 1177 German edition) there is only one remedy which has gout with stiffness plus swelling of hands: Colchicum.   As I had learned not to give Colchicum during an acute attack of gut without a drainage remedy, I decided to prescribe Urtica urens mother tincture to support her kidneys.

March 2012

First prescription:  Colchicum C 200 one dose and Urtica urens: 5 drops water daily.  She should avoid a lot of meat and beer as well as coffee.

Follow up: April 2012

Four weeks later she could use her right hand. The swelling was less. She felt much better and she was able to go faster.  Now she needs one hour to get up. She cannot believe how quickly she can run up and down the stairs of the underground.  Neither her knee nor the feet hurt any longer.  She has a lot of energy now and is totally happy. During the follow up I noticed that the scleras of her eyes are dark grey which is a sign that a lot of toxins are in the body. As the acute issue was no longer present I prescribed Bellis p.

Second prescription:

Bellis perennis mother tincture: 5 drops in the morning (to support the spleen) for one month.

Urtica urens: 5 drops in water mother tincture daily for three months.

Chelidonium: 6X one tablet daily for one month.

Follow up: 8.6.2012

The patient feels fantastic and has a lot of energy. The fingers /hand are still swollen. She can walk very well now. The cold weather does not influence her any longer but still she prefers warm weather.  She has more energy and now loves to go swimming.  She eats salad now. She has more power in her right wrist. She feels more balanced inside. New symptom: there is a corn on the right toe now. As she states that she is a cowardly person I decided to give her Lycopodium C 30 one dose.

Ars Lyc Calc Sil Phos Bry
14 13 9 9 9 6
General: cold weather agg. 3 2 3 3 1 1
Food: craving warm food 3 3 1 2
General: craving coffee 2 1 1 1
Does not want to be alone 3 2 1 1 4
Extremities:corn 1 3 2 3 2 2
Extremities swelling hands 2 2 2 1 2


Follow up 10.09.2012

She cancelled a lot of appointments because she felt full of energy. Now she came to see me because she has less energy. During the past weeks her craving for beer, coffee and meat has increased.  She still can move herself very well.

Repetition of Lycopodium, this time C 200 one dose and Urtica urens mother tincture 5 drops daily for one month.

One year later the patient still feels balanced – in- and outside. She learned that coffee, beer and meat are not tolerated by her body. She still has a lot of energy.  During this year neither the gout attack nor the pain returned.  We are still in close contact.

About the author

Dagmar Scholz

Dagmar Scholz is a qualified Heilpraktikerin and has studied Homoeopathy for four years at the Clemens von Boenninghausen Society for Homoeopathy in Wolfsburg, Germany and has joined their managing committee. In 2004 she opened her practice in Twistringen, Germany. She translated Boericke’s Pocket Manual of Homoeopathic Materia Medica and worked as a translator for Prof. Georges Vithoulkas. She is a member of the German Red Cross and a qualified First Aid teacher.


  • This is homeopathy? And who was with mercurius?Is a mother tincture prescription homeopathic? And a 6x?

  • Dear Sir, this is homeopathy how I learned it. I choose Colchicum because Colchicum is a remedy which is prescribed in first line for patients suffering from gout – not Mercurius. Mother tincture helps the body – according to Nebels drainage remedies – to detox the body. A lot of remedies can be used in mother tincture – please have a look at Boerickes Materia medica.

  • Dear Dr. Sidhu, the laboratory findings were normal except rheumatic factors and GPT. That was the reason why I asked myself : a case of arthritis or gout?! The doctors told her that she has arthritis (the uric acid was normal ( February 2012: uric acid was 34 ( normal range: 10-50) ). The rheumatic factors were 23IU/ml . Last week I got a call from her and she told me that in January the blood was examined and even the rheumatic factors are no longer measurable. Her doctor could not believe it. I think Hahnemann was right when he said: do not treat a disease ! I believe that this patient had gout – not arthritis and gout is able to destroy the joints as arthritis does!

  • Dear Dagmar! You have rightly selected Colchicum which is very much effective for smaller limbs’ pain.MT may be used in homeopathy.Thanks a lot.

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