Clinical Cases

Revisiting: The Sore Throat That Didnt Hurt

Cropped Shana
Written by Elaine Lewis

Once again, Elaine gives the answer to last month’s quiz!

Who missed last month’s meaningful quiz?  Here it is again with the answer to follow:

Mom! Where are yooooooooou!!!!!


It’s time for the quiz! You’ve got three memos here from Dr. B! First memo: “Elaine, where is the quiz?” Second memo, “Elaine, for the 500th time, where is the quiz?!”


Third memo, “Elaine! Where is the…” and then there’s a whole bunch of symbols followed by “i-n-g”….

Oh for heaven’s sake! How many times have I told people not to bother me when I’m in Cosmic Consciousness?! Whose case are we doing?

Well…there’s the guy who faked having a heart attack to make sure he wasn’t having one….

I don’t think so……

And then there’s the guy who faked Tourettes Syndrome to make sure he didn’t have that….

That was the same guy, Shana!

Here’s someone with the flu.

That’s perfect! People can’t get enough of the flu, it’s all anyone can talk about!  Now all we need is the perfect fictitious name…….  OK, how does this sound:  “Lady MacBeth!” 

Mom! No one’s going to believe that someone came to you named “Lady MacBeth”!

Are you sure?

I’m going back out to shovel snow.

Good, it will be a character-building experience! Now, as usual, I asked “Lady MacBeth” to fill out the Acute Case Questionnaire. Why? Because if you don’t ask people to do this, they’ll give you an “allopathic case”: fever, sore throat, cough…we can’t solve a case that way! Homeopathy is the science of “peculiars”, of individualization, that’s why we need the questionnaire. When someone is sick, you have to know the right questions to ask; so, here we go with…

The Sore Throat That Didn’t Hurt!

 by Lady MacBeth (no relation to any other Lady MacBeth you may have read about)

Acute Case Questionnaire

1. Describe the complaint or complaints in your own words in as much detail as you can. Don’t forget to include the onset–did the complaint come on suddenly or gradually?

Sore throat with pain from ear to chin. I feel heaviness in ear & in head also. It started on Monday night, at that time my body was so warm, feet were also hot, my nose is constantly blocked. I am having empty eructations almost constantly. The sore throat is reddish. I can see blisters and swelling in throat, more swelling on the right side. I have constipation. Feeling of ear pain going from ears to jaw and chin. My nasal secretion is watery and I feel cutting sensation in my nose. Feeling nasal flow falling in the throat, nasal flow yellowish with red streaks sometimes. I am not sneezing but wish to sneeze so that my nasal block and head heaviness would be reduced. I am feeling hot. I want to switch on the fan. Fever: 35.8 degrees C.

2. Etiology–this means the cause, if you know it.

By catching cold, by washing clothes, and went out while it was drizzling.

3. Sensation–

Someone is making a drilling sound in my ears, sometimes feel like my ear is opened or closed. Whistling sound in ears. Feel heaviness in external ear.  Right ear is blocked.

4. Appearance– anything remarkable? Red skin, droopy eyes, etc.?

Red blister-like eruptions appear when I scratch on any part of my body.

5. Location–where on the body is your complaint located?

Throat, ears, itch in the throat cause mild coughing.

6. Modalities–

Desire to vibrate legs, desire to go out in the rain, desire fresh air, desire to open the nose, desire to lie on the chest.

7. Concomitants

My problem increases when I wake up

8. Discharges

Yellowish nasal discharge internally in throat, watery discharge from nostrils

9. Generals–

I am hot, I am not hungry, I am very thirsty. Desire to drink so much water. I am tired, I am irritable

10. The mentals

Any quarrel or dispute is intolerable. irritability

11. What have you been saying?

(no answer)

12. What are you doing?

I want to go out of the house.

13. Describe your thirst and appetite–

I am very thirsty,. No appetite, want cold drinks, taking small sips because my nose is blocked. Desire to drink too much water. Desire to eat hot and spicy food. Bad taste in mouth. Tongue is not white.

14. Fever?

No fever

15. Sweating?

Too much sweating on whole body, bad smell of the sweat.

16. Odors?

Bad odor of the sweat

17. What is most striking or peculiar about your condition?

Ear pain and blockage, Throat is not painful but blisters, redness and swelling inside.

18. Is there a diagnosis? For instance, flu, teething, etc.

I think it due to cold

19. Describe your energy–

(no answer)





Rhus tox







Here is what one of our readers had to say:


 Solution (Perhaps) to The Sore Throat That Didn’t Hurt: The following few symptoms were used to form a totality. Pain, ear, Right side Throat, swelling, right side Nose, coryza Nose, discharge, watery Thirsty+++ for cold water Perspiration+++, offensive. As per this totality, the indicated remedy seems to be Belladonna. Although the ‘painlessness’ of the throat ailment did indicate to Baptisia, but I didnt find it covering the other symptoms so markedly as Belladonna did, hence the remedy.
Well, this is the whole point. It was Baptisia. And why? Because “painless sore throat”, the most characteristic, individualizing symptom/the most peculiar symptom in the case (let’s face it: Sore Throat with no pain????) goes for Baptisia and that makes all this other stuff practically irrelevant. BUT, there ARE confirmations for Baptisia, and here they are: bad odors and excessive thirst! Now, everything you’re left with in the case is very uncharacteristic and common, which means it’s of lesser value! But, guess what? Baptisia is a 3 for right-sided complaints! So, you might say, it is now a slam-dunk for Baptisia! Plus, and here’s an important thing, bad odors indicate sepsis. Belladonna is not a septic remedy, it’s a “clean” remedy. You don’t expect bad odors in a Belladonna case. Here’s what Dr. Saritha S. had to say:


I am thinking about baptisia, as painless congested throat makes me think of that , and other concomitant is offensiveness. My other d/d would be phytolacca and mercurius esp merc-i.f. because of right sided affections and pain radiating 2 ear and thirst.
with regards,
Dr Saritha.S.

Thank you Dr. Saritha S!  Our good friend Pat came up with the wrong answer and I asked her to check out the painless sore throat rubric.  Here’s what she said:
The rubric throat, inflammation painless, has Baptisia and Carbolic acid in Complete 4.5. I went back and forth between the 2 but couldn’t find a good fit to rest of symptoms. That’s when I went to larger rubric of Generalities, painlessness of usually painful complaints. Bapt has the offensive breath, thirst, worse on waking, restlessness, profuse, offensive sweat and eruptive fevers (not in throat, eruptions, vesicles and not in skin eruptions, vesicles after scratching…nor is carb-ac.). Carbolic acid fits the bill except it usually describes a state of collapse, not the restlessness of this case. So…faced with a choice from small rubric of painless sore throat , my bet’s on Baptisia.


Much better! A rubric like Throat, inflammation, painless is a gift, because when most of our rubrics are uncharacteristic/common or contain dozens of remedies, we can’t have faith in our selection! A small rubric like this where one of the remedies is in BOLD means we’ve found a truly characteristic symptom and all we have to do is check back with the rest of the case and say, “Does this remedy have thirst?  Yes!  Does this remedy have foul smelling perspiration?  Yes!  Does this remedy have the flu?  Yes!” and if it seems to reasonably cover the case, you’re through!

Finally, let’s look at this one:

 Answers to Ezine Quiz dated Feb`10. Hi Elaine, Im back this month,with my answer to the quiz! 

That’s great! Who are you? 

We have a nice acute case of Mrs Macbeth and her flu..

Excuse me, that was “Lady MacBeth” (no relation to any previous “Lady MacBeth” you may have heard about).

On reading it,we come upon the generals & PQRS symptoms which are quite characteristic..

They are:

Right side affections- ear & throat.

Thirsty for lots of water.

Hot patient.

Wet getting- a cause to the illness.

Sweat profuse and offensive.

Desire spicy- inspite of the throat with blisters, red and swollen.

Painlessness of the throat despite the inflammatory pathology.

Constant eructations which comes in as a concomittent to the case.

The irritability which is an important mental symptom coming up.

Out of all these symptoms, the painlessness running through the particular sector affected inspite of the inflammatory pathology seems striking..

Absolutely! That’s what I thought too!

According to the Complete Repertory:

Inflamation- sore throat painless: bapt, carb ac.

So far, so good.

I will rule out Bapt by it being a left sided remedy

Ouch! OMG! You were so close! I can see what happened, you used the Complete Repertory! I just checked it. The Complete Repertory lists over a thousand remedies in “Generalities: left”, many of them as 3’s and 4’s, including all the famous RightSided remedies, making this rubric completely useless and worthless! Essentially what it seems to be saying is that EVERY remedy in the Materia Medica is left-sided! Moreover, when I tried to check the “right-sided” rubric in Generalities, it wasn’t there! Look for yourself! I believe there must be some kind of HUGE error here!

So, I went to Murphy’s Repertory. And I checked Generals: sides, right–and there was Baptisia as a 3! Then I checked Sides, left–and Baptisia wasn’t there. This is why you picked the wrong remedy; what a shame; clearly it was NOT your fault!  I think you got whacked by the Complete Repertory!

Baptisia acts especially on the blood, GIT, mind- where the stupor condition is more prominent along with the typhoid condition..

Yes, it’s true, Baptisia is known for stupor and we didn’t seem to have that here. BUT, we did have two other things Baptisia is known for: the thirst and the bad odors! Now, if you look up “painless sore throat”, there are two remedies, as you said, Baptisia and Carb-ac.; but, Baptisia is a 3 and carb-ac. is a 1. Which are you going to go for? Well, if you hadn’t made the mistake about the sides of the body, you probably would have gone for Baptisia.

Carb acid acts on the mucous membranes of the throat etc. characterized by painlessness, foulness,flatulence, prostration..

(Carb ac covers our concomittent of eructations while Bapt doesn’t.)

Well, actually, Baptisia is in the eructations rubric, even if only as a 1, but it’s there nonetheless.

So my final prescription will be for Carb acid..

Hey Elaine, if I’m right this time, wow! it will be my luck..

Just your luck that you used an “incomplete” repertory!

And now, congratulations to our winner, Dr. Saritha S.!!!!! How about a big round of applause? I hope to see all of you back here again next month for another amazing Hpathy Quiz.


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

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