As a child I had the good fortune to be treated by the late JB Geates, the Doyen of homeopathic medicine in Sydney. I soon learned respect for the “wee pills and powders”.
Once I was safely parked in general practice in the 1970s, I was troubled that while my training in diagnosis was working well, the therapeutics did not.
Hospital level conditions such as pneumonia and acute gout did well, but typical GP problems such as aches and pains or susceptibility to coughs and colds failed to respond. This was a problem, as I had been a competent hospital doctor but several years later, was a useless GP (at least as far as treatment went).
Once more I came upon Dr Geates; this time at an Acupuncture conference and he agreed to teach homeopathy to interested doctors.
It went well, and aided by annual intensive courses in UK, a colleague and I formed the Australian Medical Faculty of Homeopathy with Dr Geates as its president.
With the arrogance of youth, I then followed the Surgeons’ dictum: “see one, do one, teach one”, set up an MFHom training course in Australia and went into the import-export business.
We were importing freezing English Homeopathic Physicians from the UK Winter, warming them gently in the Sydney sun and exporting them back, having examined our candidates. The duly warmed Great Beasts of the Faculty of Homeopathy awarded me the FFHom for this, in the late 1980s.
Around this time, we entered a series of epidemics: CFS and Recurrent Strain Injury (RSI). I wrote a paper on Chronic Fatigue Syndrome: “All that is Weary is not ME”. This did not make me in any way popular with the “so tired of my life” brigade. Truth can be painful.
The Chinese had a technique of injecting acupuncture points, and this became known as Biopuncture. Ampoules were “imported” from Germany by dubious means and injected into the apathetic Antipodeans slumped in my waiting room.
I used a “nauseating triumph of polypharmacy”: Hepar Compositum for liver detoxification, Coenzyme Compositum for Krebs Cycle based cellular energy and Echinacea Compositum for the supposed underlying immune dysfunction. It nonetheless worked a treat. The injection sites were selected from Master Hua To’s major points: namely Liver 3, Stomach 36, and Large Intestine 4.
Around this time in the 1990s, the Americans had around the same number of homeopathic doctors as we did in Oz, ie. around 120, so I duly boasted about this at the Liga Homeopathic conference in Brazil. Politely, the Brazilian convener indicated that he had around 11,000. It was possibly more but I was weeping quietly by that stage.
It is said that the self-made man truly worships his creator. So, around this time as I started to gain a little insight, I discovered that the grown-ups of homeopathy actually knew their subject, but I did not.
I married an English lass, repatriated her to UK, and following the dictum that the sour cream floats to the top, became Medical Director at The Third Space Medicine in Soho. My colleagues and I, by using the same Medical Records system were able to search for example those cases of recurring chest infections, and who had (say) Grief and Sorrow Afflicting the Lungs (a TCM concept), to see who had benefitted from homeopathic Tuberculinum bovinum and Osteopathic correction to the appropriate Thoracic 3-4 spinal levels.
This is what I mean, when I speak of Integrated Medicine. As our co-founder and TCM Physician Steve Kippax said: “ If we fail to integrate, we disintegrate”.
Selling is the art of presenting the precise aspect of the product that the customer is looking to buy. The product I sell is health. So once colleagues acquire the simple skill of Biopuncture, (ampoules obtainable quite legally in UK) they gradually want to know about the details in say Hepar Compositum (now called Hepeel).
Just what is it about the Lycopodium? The Colocynth? The Phosphorus?
Why? And so, I gently begin to teach. This time, after 45 years, I do have something to say.