(Given to the women who proved Lilium Tigrinum )
The object in proving a drug is to ascertain the changes which the drug is capable of producing in the functions and organs of the healthy body. It is very important that each prover should know and be able to recognize the various sensations and variations of function to which she may, by peculiarity of constitution, be subject when in average health, so that she may not, while proving a drug, mistake such natural variations for effects of a drug.
The prover should have at hand, at all times, a notebook, in which to record the times of taking the drug and the doses, as well as the symptoms as they occur. The record should be made as soon as the symptom is perceived, and the time of its occurrence and the circumstances of the prover at the time should be recorded.
Before beginning the record of a proving, the prover should inscribe in the note-book a statement of her age, temperament, the sicknesses which she has had, and those to which she has an inherited or acquired tendency; also whatever pains or sensations she may be habitually subject to; also any peculiar susceptibilities she may possess to external influences of any kind, or to mental or moral or emotional excitements, depressions, or perversions. Her constitutional peculiarities respecting the menstrual function should be carefully recorded, regarding frequency, quantity, character, and whatever inconveniences or
The prover should find out by experiment, and should carefully state what circumstances aggravate or ameliorate the pain (or other symptom), and note its periodical recurrence, because periodicity is a very important element in the history of the action of drugs. For example: is the pain worse when the prover stands, or sits or lies down, worse during exercise and better during rest, worse on first waking, worse in the cold and relieved by heat, worse or better from touch or pressure, etc. All such conditions of aggravation or amelioration should be carefully recorded. If the pain move from one part of the body to another, the fact and the course of the pain should be recorded. The sides of the body on which symptoms occur should always be stated.
The times of occurrence, aggravation, and amelioration are very important elements, as, in the morning or afternoon; at night, before or after midnight, or waking from sleep, just before or after eating, etc., etc.
Changes in the quantity, quality, and appearance of the natural secretions should be carefully described. The urine, for instance, should be measured, and the quantity per day recorded. It should be tested for acid and albumen and whatever sediment it may deposit should be carefully described. Modifications of the menstrual functions should be most carefully recorded, such as its greater or less frequency or quantity, alterations of color and consistency, whether acrid or not, pains and discomforts of body or mind which precede, accompany, or follow it.
Secretions not observed by the prover when in health —such as leucorrhoea, unusual perspirations, etc. should be described, as to color, consistency, odor, nature, whether bland or acrid, times of occurrence, and circumstances which increase or diminish them, and symptoms which accompany them.
If organic symptoms occur, such as eruptions or suspected enlargements or displacements of organs, it is well to consult a physician in order to ascertain the exact condition, which should be carefully described.
The records should be full and minute. It is better to be obliged to erase something afterward, than to risk the loss of an important symptom by aiming at brevity.
The dose should be taken at a time when the prover can rest, in mind and body, for a half hour after taking it. The early morning is the best time, for then the prover will have a chance to observe the action of the drug for fifteen to eighteen hours without interruption by sleep. It is better to begin with a small dose, gradually increasing it until effects are recognized, and then to cease taking the drug until these effects have ceased. It may then be repeated in a somewhat larger dose. No danger of permanent illness is incurred by this mode of proving drugs.
During a proving, the prover should abstain from the use of medicines, cosmetics and perfumes, but should make no marked deviation from her usual diet and regimen.
Habits of so long standing as to have become “ second nature “ should be continued in moderation, since to break them off suddenly is to institute at once a morbid state.
From: Homoeopathy –The Science of Therapeutics – The Principles of Homoeopathy – Dr. Carroll Dunham – 1877