Lectures on Homeopathic Materia Medica - James Tyler Kent


The complaints of Phosphorus are most likely to arise in the feeble constitutions, such as have been born sick, grown up slender, and grown too rapidly.

Its complaints are found in such as are emaciated, and in those who are rapidly emaciating; in children who are going into marasmus, and in persons who have in them the foundation of consumption fairly well laid. Delicate, waxy, anemic and emaciated subjects. In persons who are vehement, irascible.

This expresses the person’s disposition somewhat as well as his internal constitutional state. Internally he is in a turmoil. Subject to violent pulsations, complaints from electric changes in the atmosphere; violent palpitations and orgasms. In chlorotic girls who have grown too rapidly and have suddenly taken on weakness, pallor, green sickness, with menstrual difficulties. Ebullitions and congestions. Hemorrhagic constitutions.

Blood: Small wounds bleed much; the prick of the needle will bubble forth much bright red blood.

Hemorrhage from small wounds, from the nose, from the lungs, from the stomach, from the bladder and from the uterus. Bleeding from ulcerations. False granulations that bleed. Purpura hoemorrhagica. Black and blue spots.

Blood settles beneath the conjunctiva, or beneath the skin anywhere.

Bloody saliva; evidences of disorganized blood, or that the blood seems to become fluid. Small bruises take on broad blue spots. Blows much blood out of the nose. Petechiae all over the body, such as are found in typhoid fever, low forms of continued fever with hemorrhages. Fungous growth. Fatty degeneration is a marked feature of Phosphorus, and can be found in the liver, heart or kidneys.

General dropsical condition. Bloating of the hands and feet, especially dropsical conditions after scarlet fever. The mucous membranes are all pale, such as is found after bleeding or in low forms of disease. A marked state of anemia and relaxed condition of the muscles. Muscles flabby. Fatty degeneration of the muscles.

The genitals hang down. In the woman, relaxation of the pelvic organs, prolapsus and other displacements. Stiffness is a marked feature of Phosphorus. Stiffness on beginning to move. Limbs stiff like a foundered horse, especially in the morning. Rheumatic stiffness in all the limbs. Phosphorus has tearing, drawing pains in the limbs. Drawing, tearing pains in affected parts. Phosphorus complaints are worse in cold weather.

The patient himself, generally considered, is sensitive to cold. All his complaints are worse from cold and cold applications, and better from beat and warm applications, except the complaints of the head and stomach, which are ameliorated from cold as will hereafter be described. Phosphorus has been very useful in weak, relaxed conditions of the joints following sprains, when the symptoms agree.

Necrosis is another feature of Phosphorus, especially of the lower jaw, but may be useful in necrosis of any of the bones. Exostoses of the skull with tearing pains. Tearing, boring pains, especially at night. Phosphorus has cured polypi of the nose and cars. Scrofulous and glandular swellings. Glands enlarge, especially after contusions like Bellis.

Glandular affections of weak, pale, sickly individuals, such as suffer from diarrhea, such as suffer from exhaustive conditions, abscesses, fistulous openings, with hectic fever. Abscesses with copious discharge of yellow pus. Malignant growths are greatly restrained by the use of Phosphorus, when the symptoms agree. Burning pains are observed everywhere. Burning in the brain, burning in the skin. Burning in the stomach, in the chest, and in various parts.

The Phosphorus patient is very sensitive to all external impressions slight odors, noises, touch. Slight causes lead to exhaustion of either body or mind. Trembling throughout the body from slight causes, using the bands, from slight exertion, from debility, from coughing. Weakness prevails in a marked degree, finally becoming paralysis or paralytic weakness such as occurs in most forms of typhoid fever, with sliding down in bed, trembling and jerking of the muscles. Paralysis with formication and tearing in the limbs.

Paralysis that comes with apoplexy. Jerking and twitching of the muscles such as has been found in paralysis. Spasms of the paralyzed parts. Tearing, drawing, burning pains throughout the body.

The Phosphorus patient wants to be rubbed. He is generally better after sleep. Always wants to rest. Always tired. The Phosphorus patient undergoes great excitement. Tremulousness. Wild thoughts. Excitability, keeping him awake at night. Violent imaginations.

Mind: Excitability even to ecstasy and clairvoyance.

The mind may be overactive or may be extremely passive with loss of memory. Irritability of mind and body and great prostration of mind after slight mental effort, and of the body afar slight physical exertion.

Anxiety, gloomy forebodings. Fear that something will happen. Anxious at twilight. Anxious when alone. Apprehensiveness. Apprehensive during thunder storms, which brings on many complaints; palpitation, diarrhea and trembling. Trembling of the whole body.

Attacks of indigestion from fear. Fear in the evening, fear of death. Fear of strange old faces looking at him from the corner. Full of strange, insane imaginations. On the border land of insanity. Inability to sustain a mental effort. Fear of apoplexy. Reflecting brings on headache and difficult breathing associated with apprehensiveness or sinking at the pit of the stomach. His fear seems to begin ‘at the pit of the stomach.

Apathy or indifference; indifferent to his friends and surroundings. Indifferent to his children. Answers no questions, takes no notice of his family and things about him, answers slowly, thinks sluggishly, seems dazed or in a stupor. Everything looks dark, he is weary of life, gloomy and says nothing.

Dejected; a most marked case of hypochondriasis. Weeping, sad, hysterical; will uncover the body and expose his person. Violent, loquacious; delirium. Delirium of low forms of fever, or delirium of mania a potu.

Maniacal attacks come on during sleep with fury and extreme violence, so that no one dares approach him, and this progresses to imbecility, silliness, weak brain, idiocy. Brain fag from mental overwork and constant strain of eyes. Vertigo is a very common symptom throughout all of the complaints of Phosphorus. Staggering while walking as if intoxicated. Vertigo when in the open air; vertigo after eating; vertigo in the evening. Heaviness and confusion in the head and things go round; great weakness of the head.

All of these mental symptoms are worse in the dark; worse when alone; sometimes worse from music; worse from excitement; worse from playing the piano.

Head: The headaches of Phosphorus are congestive and throbbing.

The blood mounts to the head. The headaches are ameliorated from cold and worse from heat, worse from motion, and better from rest, worse lying down. The patient is often compelled to sit upright, with great pressure upon the head and cold applications. The face is flushed and hot; burning in the brain.

The warm room, warm surroundings, warm food, putting the hands into warm water will increase the headache. The complaints of the head like the complaints of the stomach are worse from heat, warm applications and from warm food, and better from cold things; while the complaints of the body are better from warmth and, worse from cold.

The headaches are most violent and are often attended with hunger or preceded by hunger; headaches with vomiting, red face, and scanty urine; uraemic headaches; violent neuralgic pains darting, tearing, shooting through the head; pressing pains in the head. Periodical headaches, headaches brought on from mental exertion.

Great heat in the head and stiffness in the muscles of the face and jaws. This is sometimes attended with coldness in the back of the head. Shocks through the brain. The headaches are worse from noise, from light; apoplectic congestion of the head. It has cured acute hydrocephalus and hydrocephaloid symptoms.

Chronic inflammation of the meninges of the brain; softening of the brain; imbecility; insanity. Violent head pains; atrophy of the brain; medulla oblongata. The scalp is covered with dandruff; the hair falls out in patches, leaving bald places here and there. Great heat in the scalp; tension in the scalp and face and forehead as if bound by a bandage. Scaly eruptions on the bald places of the head; exostoses on the skull.

The complaints of the head are brought on from becoming overheated. Sensation as if the hair were pulled; great soreness of the scalp; must let the hair hang down during headaches.

Eyes: The eye symptoms are very numerous; burning, redness, congestion, enlargement of the blood-vessels.

Objects look red and often blue in the field of vision, or objects sometimes look green and gray as is observed in incipient cataract. Colors, also, appear black before the eyes. Vision is vague; the eyes give out while reading; sees better in the morning, in the twilight.

The eye symptoms, like Phosphorus in general, have amelioration after rest. Momentary blindness like fainting; seems to suddenly become blind; paralysis of the optic nerve; blindness after electric shocks, or after a stroke of lightning. It has cured glaucoma. It has cured inflammation of the retina in Bright’s disease.

It has cured opacity of the vitreous humor. It has cured paralytic weakness of the various muscles of the eyes. It has cured paralysis of the third pair of nerves where there is falling of the lids; sub-acute inflammation of the eyes.

About the author

James Tyler Kent

James Tyler Kent

James Tyler Kent (1849–1916) was an American physician. Prior to his involvement with homeopathy, Kent had practiced conventional medicine in St. Louis, Missouri. He discovered and "converted" to homeopathy as a result of his wife's recovery from a serious ailment using homeopathic methods. In 1881, Kent accepted a position as professor of anatomy at the Homeopathic College of Missouri, an institution with which he remained affiliated until 1888. In 1890, Kent moved to Pennsylvania to take a position as Dean of Professors at the Post-Graduate Homeopathic Medical School of Philadelphia. In 1897 Kent published his magnum opus, Repertory of the Homœopathic Materia Medica. Kent moved to Chicago in 1903, where he taught at Hahnemann Medical College.

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