Clinical Cases

Two Cases of Retained Placenta

Dr. W. W. Gleason describes two cases of retained placenta cured with homeopathic remedy Sepia.

From the Hahnemannian Advocate -March 1902 – Chicago

Showing how little danger there is of sepsis under Homoeopathic treatment, even in severe cases.

I have on record a case which proves the power of the potentized remedy and the futility of the common scare because of retained masses of tissues. Mrs. S. called me for treatment of what she denominated “offensive whites.” She was in seeming good health generally, able to attend to her household duties, but troubled greatly by the constant discharge from the va-gina of purulent looking liquid so profuse as to necessitate the wearing of cloths which must be changed several times a day, both from the quantity and offensiveness of the discharge.

Her abdomen showed some enlargement, but inquiry as to possible pregnancy was met with denial and that denial emphasized by the uncovering of a healthy pair of twins of six months growth ,sleeping in a cradle. I was not satisfied even by this evidence, and requested to be shown the clothes worn for the previous twenty-four hours. I collected these clothes and carried home with me some relics not overpleasant, and close examination of these not only made me stronger in my suspicions of pregnancy, but shocked me by the conviction that some of these were portions of a dead foetus. The presence of distinct pieces of bone, hairs, and flesh, all very small, to be sure, yet recognizable, were indisputable.

Subjective symptoms were meagre. There were flushes of heat, cold feet, shooting in the va-gina and mouth of womb, discharge burning and corrosive, burning in abdomen, slight hemorrhages at intervals of two weeks, gone feeling in stomach, weight in anus and constipation, with stools either knotty and hard or in very small round balls, colicky pains in abdomen, congestion of blood to head and face, great nervousness, uneasiness and worry of mind, greatly sensitive to any bad odors which caused the offensive discharge to be her constant annoyance.

The neck of the womb was closed tight; the abdomen was sensitive to pressure; the smell of food was repulsive. She was much better in all her feelings out of doors, and worse in a warm room. She had menstruated (as she thought) the second month after the twins were born, but not afterwards. (She had experienced flows of blood, as I have said.) Being a large, strong and robust, quite masculine woman, these hemorrhages had not weakened her, nor had the excessive vaginal discharge weakened her.

This discharge had dated from the fifth month after the twins’ birth. That is, she had had the offensive discharge over a month. Her symptoms pointed to Sepia, which was given in high potency. The offensiveness of discharge quickly lessened, and after three weeks’ time a rotten mass was discharged which contained the better portion of a foetus and quite a large portion of a placenta which might indicate a pregnancy of two months’ growth. No further discharge occurred, nor any untoward symptoms after the discharge of the dead tissues.

Another Sepia case is worth mentioning as showing how little danger there is of sepsis under Homoeopathic treatment, even in severe cases, if no measures are taken to obstruct Nature’s proper action. This was the case of a young, unmarried woman delivered of a twelve pound foetus at full term. There was some laceration, which was immediately and fully repaired with ten stitches.

Aside from the laceration, which was unavoidable because of contracted pelvis, the birth was normal up to the last stage, when I found that the placenta was so firmly attached that it could not be removed, breaking down so readily that only pieces could be removed, and the woman suddenly showed such weakness that I preferred to repair the laceration while she could bear it and leave the placenta to Nature to expel. She was under China the first two hours, the symptoms calling for that remedy. The symptoms then changed.

There came on shuddering with the after pains, which for a first birth were unusually severe. She wanted to be covered thickly during these shudderings. There were fainting spells. She had pressing down pains in abdomen and back. There was severe pressure at the anus. Yellowish spots came on her cheeks and a yellow shade on the bridge of her nose. There were frequent flushes of heat, chills following. Hands cold as ice. She had spells of laughing immoderately, closely followed by weeping moods. She dreaded being alone a moment. Everything irritated her, and she would then vehemently complain of everything and everybody. She had dizzy spells, followed by flushing of face. At times her sight became dim. Her eyes lachrymated constantly and were sensitive to the light. Here was a good place for that queen of remedies, Sepia. It was given in the two hundredth, and on the seventh day after confinement we had the entire placenta discharged, followed by a first-class recovery.

About the author

W. W. Gleason


  • The cases clearly indicates the efficacy of our homoeopathic medicines in Obstetrics cases.

    Wonderfully treated with sepia.

    Thanks for the information. I can apply this in my clinical practice

    Dr. Meenakshi

  • The cases related to retained placenta are very useful and will give support to many similar unsolved cases by other doctors.

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