Drug Provings Homeopathy Papers

Some Proving Symptoms of Salix Fragilis / Crack Willow

Kent says paradoxical is the opposite of expected. This is how −remember Ignatia is affectionate, but rejects comforting− they present constipation with soft stool or their angina gets better when eating solids. Ignatia is nostalgic, sensitive to injustice. Does not feel forsaken.   Salix Fragilis differs from Ignatia in their feeling of splitting and antagonism. They do not bring up disease or religion, they feel forsaken and teary. They isolate themselves from their environment and get better when comforted.

Anacardium and Salix Fragilis: they share 1175 rubrics in the Complete Repertory.

Repertorization of the core mental symptoms of Salix Fragilis:

Self-Antagonism; confused about identity, with feeling of duality; want of confidence; forsaken, and anxiety of consciousness.

Only one remedy answers to these symptoms: Anacardium.

Stramonium and Thuja share the same symptoms, but they are not antagonistic.

Naja also shares the same symptoms, but does not feel forsaken or isolated.

Shared Symptoms:

Anacardium and Salix Fragilis

Antagonistic, confused about their identity: with feelings of duality, sensation of having two wills. With delusion of splitting body.  As regards their want of confidence, they share the fear of failure, feeling of failure and inadequacy. Irresolute.  Intellectual deficit: weak memory, with difficult concentration.

They want comfort, they are sad patients, better with weeping. Jealous and clairvoyant. Can show themselves separate from the world, indifferent. Condescending and self-loathing.  Delusion of going mad, sensation of seeing ghosts or that someone is behind them. They fear being alone, or failing, or thieves. Death is one of the themes they share:  Anarcadium: delusion of being dead, that lie I n a coffin, see dead people, or foresee death, dream with coffins,

with graves, with dead people. Can manifest a suicidal disposition or wish to kill.

Salix Fragilis: present feelings related to death, dream with slaughterhouses (E),

dream with death or dying; dream with murder.

Differential Symptoms:

As regards the splitting or separation, between both remedies, you can perceive a different tone when reading the two provings; Salix Fragilis feels isolated from their environment, related to feeling forsaken and alienated.

“I had stopped going to my Buddhist group when we first took the remedy (with which I have been involved for some years) because when I last went after taking the remedy I felt alienated, as if I did not belong. I also felt like that when I went to a Graduation Ceremony. I felt very alone, isolated and not part of the group. I slunk off and cried all the way home because I felt so lonely”. 06P 00 XX.XX NS.

In Anacardium, duality has an ethical tenor, one face is good, the other bad.

They don’t know whether they are behaving well or badly, this makes them think they don’t do anything right. This may be the point where they feel divided. Their separation from the world correlates with their want of confidence, not with feeling forsaken.

At a general level, Anacardium feels better of eating, physically and mentally.

Present tropism in digestive system and skin. Interestingly, in botany, both trees are angiospermous dicotyledon. This means they develop two cotyledons in the embryo. (Arboles Ibéricos, 2013).

Platina and Salix Fragilis

Platina and Salix Fragilis: They share 1211 rubrics in the Complete Repertory.

At EMHA (Ecuela Médica Homeopática Argentina), we studied what remedies, other than polychrest, could be considered in the differential diagnosis with Platina. Repertorization of symptoms: haughty, contemptuous and dictatorial were found in: Salix Fragilis, Ignis Alcoholis, Succinum, Chironex Fleckeri, Lac Leoninum and Uranium Metallicum.

Platina and Salix Fragilis:

They both share:

Forsaken with feeling of isolation; with indifference towards loved ones.

Anxiety of consciousness. Sad, thoughts of death.

They cry for anger or admonition.

They think they are great persons, they feel possessed, they see ghosts or spirits; they feel controlled by a supernatural being.

They can manifest dictatorial, contemptuous, disdainful.

They dance and they are jealous. They lose their way in well-known roads. They are clumsy and drop things. They present ailments: for outrage, unresponded love, death of a loved one.

However, Salix Fragilis is different mainly on feeling self-antagonistic.

Want of confidence, with fear of failing; want of sexual desire and aversion to coition.

Dr. Anna Pla, member of The Homeopathic Medical Academy of Barcelona (AMHB), has published 8 cases where she prescribed Salix Fragilis. (Pla, 2011) (6)

Below I synthesize the reasons for consultation and literal verbalizations of patients from these clinical records that guided prescription. There are no observations in these published cases, perhaps due to the short time of evolution, regarding symptoms linked to the “Law of Cure”.

Case 1:

Reason for consultation:

Headaches before menses

Tension and painful stiffness in neck.

Patient said:

“I feel whatever I do, I never make the right decision (Delusions, they cannot succeed, they do everything wrong) a part of me wants to do things, another wants to stop doing them.  I’m in conflict with myself, a conflict of sensations and situations.” (Confusion of mind, as to their identity; sense of duality. Delusions, divided into two parts) “My head won’t stop thinking and swirling, I feel I’m going crazy.  My head and my heart don’t go together, I feel divided” (Delusions, divided into two parts).

Case 2

Reason for consultation:

Headaches. Allergic rhinitis since childhood.

Cervical pain and muscle pain.

Sadness/depression since last abortion + death of mother (same month).

Literal phrases from patient:

“Want another baby, it’s a pressure, I’m afraid, I don’t want to be pregnant right now (…)  The last time, I knew it wouldn’t go well”. (Fear of failure)

“I don’t want to suffer, I really want another child”

(Will, contradiction of will. Will, sensation as if he had two wills).

I can’t take it any more (work), whatever I do, it’s never enough, till I snap; leave me alone! And no. I can’t take it any more (Firmness, drawing the line) (Desire for change, life). “I feel alone, facing the world”. (Forsaken feeling, sensation of isolation).

 Case 3:

“I’m surly (abrupt, rough), he is very loving but I feel oppressed, he hugs me too tight, he controls me, watches my every move, looks from over my shoulder to see if I change the nappies correctly. He’s a great father but also quite controlling.” (Delusions, trapped; delusions, criticized; suspicious).

“We talk and nothing changes, perhaps I don’t know what I want, I feel divided between my head and my heart (Delusion, divided in two parts).

Our biggest problem is sex, I have many memories about sex with an old boyfriend that I can’t shake off and I can’t stand when my partner wants sex and he touches me”.

Synthesis and final considerations  – Salix Fragilis (Crack Willow)

Perhaps the first thought when trying to understand this remedy stems from its name that not only identifies the substance, but also ascends in men as dynamic information. It resonates in one of its delusions: fragility. From this starting point, because of the dual or double nature of this willow: hard and fragile, the name might echo in the proving dynamics: cracking, as we said, failing, breaking, creasing and opening.

The genius of this remedy matches its name: crack willow in English and Salix Fragilis for Botany.

Another sign is the word splitting: dividing themselves in two (antagonistic tone) or separating themselves, isolating from the world.

Remedy for long grieving patients, upset, better when comforted, that want self-confidence, feel forsaken with anxiety of consciousness. Tropisms: bones and muscles (Arthritis, arthralgia. Sciatica. Cervical and/or dorsal). Sinusitis and/or rhinitis. Clinical observations in patients with a tendency to abortions. Headaches with menses.

To conclude, I quote this poem by Wang Wei (China, VII AD)[7].

Waves of Willow Trees

“Separate rows of silky willow touch,

and reflection merge into clear ripples.
The scene is not like the palace moat

where spring wind aches with departure”.

Comments, contributions and cases, email to Dra. Marisa Laguna: dramarisalaguna@gmail.com

English version edited by Carolina Serra del Rio: caroserradelrio@gmail.com


“Siento que haga lo que haga nunca tomo la decisión correcta (delusions, he cannot succeed, he does everything wrong). No soy la misma persona y no sé aún quien voy a ser; todo se está moviendo dentro de mí; mis prioridades están cambiando; una parte de mí quiere hacer cosas, otra parte quiere dejar de hacerlas. Estoy en conflicto conmigo misma, un conflicto de sensaciones y situaciones.”(Confusion of mind, as to his identity; sense of duality. Delusions, divided into two parts.)

[1] Árboles Ibéricos. (2013). Salix Fragilis. Obtained from Arboles Ibéricos: http://www.arbolesibericos.es/especie/salixfragilis

[2] Stirling, P. (1999). The Homœopathic Proving of Crack Willow Salix Frafilis. Obtained from www.hominf.org: http://www.hominf.org/sal/salfr.htm

[3] Pla, A. (2011, Jan-April). Salix Fragilis Materia Medica. Obtained from www.elsevier.es:

[4] Oxford University Press. (2016). Oxford Learner’s Dictionary. Obtained from www.oxfordlearnersdictionaries.com: http://www.oxfordlearnersdictionaries.com/

[5] Van Zandvoort, R. (s.d.). Complete Dynamics. Obtained from www.completedynamics.com: http://www.completedynamics.com/?lang=es

[6] Cirlot, J. (1992). Diccionario de Símbolos. Obtained from www.libroesoterico.com: http://www.libroesoterico.com/biblioteca/Diccionarios/Cirlot-Juan-Eduardo-Diccionario-de-Simbolos.pdf

[7] Wei, W. (1991). Waves of Willow Trees. From T. W. Barnstone, Laughing Lost in the Mountains, Poems of Wang Wei (p. 50). Hanover: University Press of New England.


About the author

Marisa Laguna

Marisa Laguna

Dr. Marisa Laguna was born in 1964, in Argentina. She studied medicine at the University of Buenos Aires (UBA), graduating as a doctor of medicine in 1989. She subsequently graduated from the Homeopathic School "Tomas Pablo Paschero" (Argentina) and begain her homeopathic practice in 2008. She is Professor of materia medica and coordinator of provings. Dr. Laguna is part of the editorial committee of the Journal Acta Homeopática Argentinensia (EMHA).

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