Clinical Cases

Depression in a Woman of 48

Shekhar Algundgi
Written by Shekhar Algundgi

Dr. Shekhar Algundgi shares a case of depression in a woman of 48. The patient’s polarities of feeling pressure, heaviness, constricted, restricted, pushed down, compressed and feeling free, floating, flying helped lead to the simillimum from the Hamamelidae family.

 D:        Doctor
P:        Patient (exact words used)
HG:     Hand Gesture

D: Tell me all your problems…

P: At the moment I am feeling nervous. There is a funny sensation in my legs. I am not confident about going anywhere on my own, feeling scared. I don’t feel like eating or doing any work. I have to put myself together. I am feeling very uncertain and frightful. Sometimes I just want to curl up and sleep under my blanket and not get up and do any house work. I used to love to clean the house. Now it’s all dusty and I can’t be bothered about it, even if anyone comes I am not bothered, it doesn’t make a difference to me. Basically all these things have caused me a lot of strain and stress. And it has caused me a lot of pain and heaviness in my heart. There is a constriction within, which is like a tight feeling inside my chest and a light kind of feeling in my legs.  [Long pause]

Sometimes I feel my husband doesn’t listen to what I say. He doesn’t like discussing what is within my heart so I just have to keep quiet and do whatever has to be done. I know he is upset about certain things, so I avoid doing those things. Like he likes his things in place so [if] anybody shifts anything in his cupboard he gets very upset which I don’t do now. Once I cleaned his cupboard and by mistake I put one paper somewhere so he got very angry, from that day I don’t touch his cupboard again. [Another long pause]

It is just a feeling that I am not being heard, not being able to communicate and say what I want. Sometimes I am feeling very constricted [HG],

restricted, uneasy, depressed, low, sad and lonely. Some kind of heaviness, uneasiness, and feeling caught, not being able to come out . Feeling compressed, suppressed as if somebody is pushing me down and restricting me; not letting me come out [HG] as if somebody is holding me and pushing me [HG] and not being able to free myself.

Tightness, heaviness, closed [HG] as if I am caught up [HG] in something. Wanting to free myself from this space [HG] to get out and feel the breath [air] [HG]. To feel the freshness, feel the freedom to be myself. The freedom to say what I want to say. To do what I want to do. Feeling of just being me, just relaxed, free and happy.

D: Describe closed…

P: Closed [HG], feeling of being in a tight box, not being able to come out. Pushing up but not being able to be free. Being surrounded by all sides and wanting to come out [HG] of this closed box.

D: Describe the experience of being in the tight box…

P: Being pressed [HG],

feeling on hold [held down] not being able to push up [HG], putting heaviness [HG] from above. Pressurised, just feeling pressed down [HG]. Being pushed from up [HG] not being able to escape [HG] come out of and get [HG] out of a situation.

D: Describe pressed down…

P: Pressed, heaviness [HG] inability to move and to come up [HG] and get out. Pressure, heaviness from above.

D: Describe the experience of heaviness…

P: Heavy and tight [HG].

D: Describe that experience of hold [being held down]…

P: Caught, inability to get out and be me.

D: Forget you, describe caught…

P: Closed [HG], again closed, feeling breathless, can’t breathe freely.

D: Little bit more of that closed feeling…

P: Restricted [HG], pushed down, somebody holding me in that position.

D: What’s the experience in that…

P: Not free, caught, pressurised.

D: Describe free…

P: Floating, freedom just being myself, just being there (HG – showing the movement of being afloat with her hand).

D: What are you showing with your hand…

P: The freedom to be myself.

D: Just this… forget you…just this…

P: Just the flow, from within the waves flow easily.

D: Bit more…

P: Freedom, being light.

D: Describe experience of light…

P: Lightness, freedom, happiness, just relaxed. Feeling free.

D: Floating, freedom, light…little bit more of this experience…

P: Floating, lightness, no pressure.

D: Bit more of that experience of light…

P: Just moving on with ease and tranquillity, freedom.

D: Describe that experience of tranquillity, just that word tranquillity, just the experience of that…

P: Peaceful, quiet, just relaxed and free.

D: What’s the opposite of all this?

P: Compressed [HG], restricted [HG], pressed down [HG], pushed under, pressurised

(HG – showing the action of pressurised with her hand)

D: Just that gesture…

P: Pressurised, pushed down.

D: Bit more, yeah whatever you are showing, just talk about that…

P: Pushed and restricted.

D: How do you react to it?

P: Can’t come out of it, feel breathless, constrained feeling. Inability to do what I want to do.

D: So how do you react to that moment?

P: Go within myself, go still deeper down. Can’t say anything, cannot retaliate cannot say anything, can’t come out.

D: So…

P: Compressed

D: Tell me about your dreams in sleep?

P: My last dream was about my mother-in-law, who is no more. I just heard her voice calling my husband and then I saw a spirit going out of the window of her room.

D: What was the feeling in that dream?

P: Frightening.

D: How did that fright feel to you within?

P: Just scared very frightful.  Like something within my heart gave way.

D: How did that feel to you within, that scared [feeling], what did it feel like to you?

P: Just like a pressure (HG – showing the action of pressure by holding both the hands together) feeling caught.

D: Just that gesture what you are showing…

P: Caught.

D: Just talk about that…

P: Pushed, compressed [HG].

D: Bit more of that gesture…

P: Tightness, pressure, heaviness, restriction, pushed, closed, compressed, not free, not being able to come out.

D: Describe that experience of free…

P: Free, floating [HG], moving in a calm manner, peaceful.

D: Describe that experience of floating…

P: Light, not being pushed, just freedom, just moving.

D: Experience of light…

P: No pressure. Just coming up (HG – showing the action of something rising with her hand).

D: Just that gesture…

P: Coming up [HG].

D: Some more words for that…

P: Freedom, free, flowing [HG], floating.

D: Some more words…

P: Being lifted up, being able to come out and float.

D: What are your fears from childhood to date…

P: Fear of dark, death and being alone.

D: What’s the fear in that?

P: I am not very comfortable of being by myself.

D: How does that not feel comfortable to you?

P: Uneasy, again restricted not being free.

D: Describe that experience of restricted, just the word?

P: Closed, pushed, and pressed.

D: So how do you react whenever you feel this pressed down, restricted, compressed?

P: I can’t say anything, I cannot react because if I say what I want to say then he gets more violent and angry. I so keep mumb.

D: What do you do?

P: Nothing, I can’t do anything helplessness.

D: Ya just focus on it, whatever comes to you just talk…

P: Just free flowing, moving, peace, light, waves, flowing easily, moving easily without any pressure.

Doodle by patient

Understanding of the Case

This is an extremely impressionable lady, who sees herself very vulnerable with her life situations. On many occasions she describes two polarities of experiences. On the one side being pressured, heaviness, constricted, restricted, pushed down, compressed, closed, tight and caught, whereas on the other side were feelings of being free; freedom, floating, flying, coming up, lifted up, light, moving with ease, peace and tranquility [all given with classical hand gestures].

Her clear description leads us to none other than the Hamamelidae family of the plant kingdom.

When she experiences the above sensations, she copes by going within herself, feeling helpless and that she can’t do anything, which denotes the Sycotic Miasm.

Plan:

Cannabis Indica 1M one dose

Placebo for 1 month

F.U. 1 (after a month of medication)

D: Tell me how you are doing?

P: Feeling little better than before. When I get up now I am less frightened. Before I needed someone constantly next to me.  Now I can manage household things on my own, though not very confidently but in a better way than before.

Now I go out with friends and when I come back I feel a little better. I have noticed that there is a change in my mood. Overall more calm and stable.

Plan:

Placebo for 1 month

F.U. 2 (after 3 months of medication)

D: So overall, what is the change you feel from the time we have started the medicine to date…

P: Sometimes I am ok, sometimes that frightened feeling comes up but not as bad as earlier. Last week I ventured for some walk and I managed to go on my own. But I am getting frequent headaches these days.

D: Describe it…

P: Sort of full feeling inside my head.

D: Describe that full feeling…

P: As though some weight has been kept over my head.

D: More…

P: Throbbing sort of headache. As though some kind of gas has been stuffed up inside my head which is making it heavy. If that gas comes out I will feel lighter.

D: Stuffed up…

P: Full, caught up, compressed, heavy, bogged down. I have to literally keep my head down, it feels so heavy.

D: What make you better…

P: Passing gas either flatulence or burping. I am drinking lots of soda these days to feel lighter.

Plan:

Cannabis Indica 1M, one dose

Placebo for 1 month

F.U. 3 (after 6 months of medication)

D: How are you?

P: I am much better. No headaches since the time I have started last course which you have given to me. I am generally feeling sorted, light and confident. I am back to my old self, running around, busy working.

Plan:

Placebo for 1 month

She continued to be better after that and we closed the case after keeping her under observation with once a month follow up without any medication.

Differential Diagnosis:

Halogens:

Halogens partially exhibit similar expressions as Hemammalidae, such as free, escape, break free, confined, caged, trapped and bound etc. The difference lies in the other side of its expression. As it belongs to the mineral kingdom and column 17, halogen has a strong sense of betrayal, backstabbing and crumbling (dead end of the periodic table) in their respective areas of concern (row understanding).

Nobel Gasses:

Similar expressions: isolation, detachment, distant feeling, loneliness, peace, bliss, light, floating.

Difference: Feeling complete, content, self-sufficient, unaffected, neutral, no structure, dissolved, equation, symmetry, balance/imbalance etc.

Avian Realm:

Birds share similar expressions of being caged, constricted, chained, confined, trapped, restricted and shackled and the opposite expression; flying, freedom, taking off, rising, light, floating, escape, weightlessness and buoyancy etc.

Birds belong to the animal kingdom and bird cases clearly exhibit a process of survival, victim-aggressor conflict; and other themes of animal kingdom in general and the avian realm in particular.

Restriction for birds is to put into limitation, being dictated to, dominated by someone and the opposite polarity is to be released, out-up and above in the air, boundless, limitless. Whereas in Hamamelidae, it is being pressured, heavy and opposite to it is light, free and floating.

Bibliography:

  • Mac repertory homeopathic software
  • Soul of remedies: Dr. Rajan Sankaran
  • Sankaran’s plant sensations in picture: Dr. Rajan Sankaran and Sandra Petri
  • Structure Volume 1: Dr. Rajan Sankaran

About the author

Shekhar Algundgi

Shekhar Algundgi

Dr. Shekhar Algundgi (M.D. (Hom.), F.Hom (U.K.), M.F. Hom), N.D. (Naturo) is on the Faculty of the International Academy of Advanced Homeopathy - The Other Song, and Honorary: R. K. Mission Hosp. Khar, Vashani Diagnostic center, Andheri, Holy Family, Andheri. Panel: IAAI, BARC. His innovative concept of ‘Homeo Gurukul’ of sharing knowledge in an open eco friendly environment which is a soul of “Swara Konkan Workshop” has now been welcomed in homoeopathic circles. His approach to workshops, which involves not only classroom method but also teaching out in the open, has been warmly welcomed. Dr. Algundgi has shared his experiences through seminars in more than 70 cities in India and many other countries. www.swarahomeoclinic.com

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