Homeopathy Papers

Questions Patients Ask–14

Last modified on December 2nd, 2018

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Elaine Lewis
Written by Elaine Lewis

More questions about homeopathy

What’s Wrong With Large Rubrics?

Hello, Elaine.  One thing I notice about your approach is that you don’t go for the large Repertory rubrics.  Admittedly there are times when I could find a better rubric, but the remedy must be in the primary one, and in the old days (before computers) finding it would be a nightmare, but, not anymore.  Why not use the large rubric?

That is a very good question!  The answer is that the large rubric basically doesn’t help you.  Let’s take “Stomach, belching” for example.  I’ll bet every remedy in the materia medica is there!  Hold on, I’ll check.  Yep, almost 350 remedies!  That means that practically every remedy belches!  Now, how is that going to help you?

Do you remember the Vertigo quiz (“Help, the Room Is Spinning!”) where the patient was dizzy as if turning in a circle, along with nausea and belching as concomitants?  A lot of people took the rubric, “Stomach, belching” (the large rubric) for that symptom instead of “Vertigo, belching, with”.

“Vertigo, belching, with” had only 5 remedies in it!  Five compared to 350–what a difference!  You can actually look at that rubric and say to yourself, “Do any of these 5 remedies fit the case?”  But you can’t do that with “Stomach, belching” with 350 remedies to look through! 

As it turned out, the main remedy under “Vertigo, belching, with” covered the whole case, and it was Pulsatilla.

A large rubric means you’ve looked up a very common symptom, examples of which might be: insomnia, constipation, diarrhea, nausea; and the problem is, we can’t solve cases with common symptoms, they don’t lead to remedies! 

Think about it, if someone said to you, “I have constipation, what’s my remedy?”  What would you say? There are 220 remedies under constipation!  You’d have to say to the person, “Tell me about your constipation–the cause, the sensation (painful, painless?), the concomitants, the modalities….”  Then you might be able to look up a subrubric, like, “constant desire, with”, which might lead to Nux vomica, the only remedy in bold for that.

Do you see what’s wrong with large rubrics now?  I know what you’re saying, “The remedy’s got to be in there!” but you know what?  Even though by all rights it should be?  You would be surprised how often a remedy in a subrubric is not in the main rubric!  Plus, what possible comfort is there in knowing that your remedy is surely somewhere among 350 remedies?  That’s like saying, “I know that my remedy is in the Materia Medica somewhere!”  How does that put you any closer to finding your remedy?  Try and imagine that all the rubrics in your repertorization are large rubrics, what would your chart look like?  A 50-remedy tie for first place?  This is the whole point of paragraph 153 of The Organon.  “The most striking, strange, rare and peculiar symptoms….”

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Lower Potencies Are Just For Physical Problems, Right?

Elaine, I just thought of something.

Okaaaaaay……………..

I recall a homeopath once telling me that “lower” potencies (30c and lower) deal more with the physical realm…

Oh dear….

…whereas the higher potencies address emotional/mental stuff.  Is that true?

When is this going to stop?

If it’s possible, then it makes me wonder, when I think of how my daughter improved with her appetite when the remedy was at 30C, but more recently with the 1M, the mental acuity, creativity, maturity, etc. has revved up….  Her appetite now is not what it was when she was on the 30C.

OK, here we go again with having to debunk the “Low potencies are just for physical problems and the high potencies are for mental problems” axiom!

Potency only means power or strength.  It’s like the difference between 2 mg. of Valium and 10 mg. of Valium.  If you’ve never taken Valium before, 2.5 mg. of Valium will put you right to sleep at night. However, if you’re a regular Valium user, 2.5 mg. will have long ago stopped working.  Eventually you’ll be at 5 mg. and then 10 mg., but the 10 mg. tablet won’t do any more for you than the 2.5 mg. did at the beginning!

So you see, even though you’re at 1M now, you’re not getting anymore “punch” out of the remedy than you did when you were at 30C!  It’s just that your immune system has “moved on” to other areas in its scheme of what to fix next based on Hering’s Law of Cure.

Remember, it’s not the remedy that “cures”, the remedy simply stimulates the immune system to “get in gear”–as they say.  It is like the ignition in your car.  It starts the car, but that’s all it does, the car does the rest!  Once the ignition is turned on, the gas starts flowing, oil starts flowing, dashboard lights come on, bells start ringing…  It’s not the ignition doing that, it just STARTED the car, that’s why they call it the “Starter”, and that’s what the remedy is–a starter!

So now your immune system has been “turned on” and it’s surveying the damage all around it and saying, “Look at this mess!  Sheesh!  What do we do first?  Where’s the biggest disaster located?  What is this log-jam over here?  OMG, the appetite is very bad, there’s no nutrition coming in; without nutrients, nothing else is possible, no healing is possible!  Let’s fix the appetite first!”  So there your daughter is after her 30C remedy, eating like a pig!  But, she may not NEED to eat like a pig now, she may have been playing “catch-up” in the beginning, getting back up to speed.

This is Hering’s Law: Healing takes place from the most important areas to the least important areas.  A lower or higher potency isn’t going to change what your immune system decides is the most important area to fix first!

All you want to see after giving a remedy is some evidence that it is acting!  And you have no way of knowing what that evidence is going to be.  You might have a child with colitis, and you’re looking to see the stool change, and nothing short of that is going to make you happy; but the truth is, you have no way of knowing what the child’s immune system is going to decide the most serious part of the case is!  You might see as a first response to the remedy an increase in appetite, or a lessening of anxiety, or an increase in sleep; and then you’ll come back to the homeopath and say, “The remedy didn’t work, all it did was lift my child’s spirits!”  Well, that’s proof that the remedy is acting, and that’s all that matters!

Now, all you have to do is KEEP the case moving!

A basic dosing strategy for chronic disease is:

6C three times a day

9C twice a day

12C once a day

15C once a day

30C one dose and wait and see what happens.  Give your next dose when the first dose starts to wear off.

200C one dose and wait, as above.  I wouldn’t be too anxious to start a chronic case off with 200C as it ties your hands, giving you no option to stop and treat injuries and acutes that may pop up along the way as you can when you’re dosing daily with lower potencies.  You always have the option to stop your daily dosing, give Gelsemium 30C for “ailments from bad news” or “ailments from anticipation”, etc., and then go right back to your 6C three times a day for your chronic case.  And of course, all remedies should be in a water bottle with approximately five succussions before each dose.  Why?  It’s in The Organon (aph. 248)–you have to raise the potency slightly before each dose to keep the case moving and you do that by succussing the bottle.  You can’t succuss dry pellets, only water.

But I have to end by saying what I always say: You pick your potency based on the severity of what’s wrong and how recent the complaint is.  A sudden emergency like anaphylactic shock means you need Apis 200C or 1M.  Your average cold could do with, say, a 30C of your cold remedy three times a day–as you get better, take less often.  A chronic disease consisting of pathological changes for many years, like arthritis, should start with a 6C three times a day.  And of course, all these prescriptions have to be adjusted based on how the patient reacts to them, and all remedies should be in water and succussed before each dose; and in general, you decide when your next dose is going to be based on the patient’s reaction to the previous dose.  You’re constantly re-evaluating your dosing schedule and potency.  A striking improvement means wait–you may not need to dose again, ever; but, the start of a relapse means it is time to dose again.

What constitutes a relapse?  I say, always keep your eye on the “center of the case”.  What’s the “center of the case”?  It’s the mental/emotionals, sense of well-being, energy, appetite and sleep.  If this area is doing well, but there’s some strange physical thing going on, like a pain in your leg that was never there before, does that mean it’s time to redose?  No!  Keep your eyes on the center of the case!  An improvement there often sets off a “ripple effect”, some peripheral area may “act up” or your physical complaint may temporarily worsen, and that’s part of Hering’s Law too, so that is not a relapse!  If the center of the case is holding strong, all is well, do nothing; but if that starts to fall apart, time to redose.

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Copying Remedies

Elaine,
Thanks so much for responding so quickly. I have some liquid mother tinctures.  I believe they are 30X.  I need to make another tincture so that I do not run out of them.  So, to my understanding, each time that I make a mother tincture, I increase the power of the tincture by one point.  Is this correct?  Is there any way to keep the power the same?

A 30X isn’t a mother tincture.  A mother tincture is an herbal tincture; or, it’s what you’re using to make a remedy from.  It’s the substance in its natural form.  For example, if you’re planning to make Nat-mur 30C or Aqua Marina 30C, your “mother” might be a vial of salt water or sea water.

But if you have a 30X remedy in water (is that what you’re saying?) and you want to make a second 30X bottle?  Or are you just saying, “I don’t want to run out of these liquid remedies I have, I don’t want them to go bad!”  Well, first of all, you can add brandy or Vodka to them so that mold won’t grow in them, that will make them last.  Secondly, when they get low in water, near the bottom, with only one dose left, simply add more pure water to the bottle, about 3/4 full, and the remedy is back!  That’s all you have to do!

Now you might say, “How is that possible?”  It’s possible because it’s not a “substance” that can get diluted the more water you add to it; it’s an “energy”, and it simply “fills up” the space!  Have you heard of the “law of conservation of energy” that says, “Energy can neither be created nor destroyed”?  Well, that means you can’t destroy an energy simply by adding more water, it’s still there!

When you have a liquid remedy bottle, don’t forget to succuss the bottle five-or-so times before each dose.  A dose is a swallow or sip.  And after you refill your bottle, you may want to add more alcohol–not rubbing alcohol, though, of course!

Thanks so much for your time!
Margaret

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Dosing Schedules

Elaine, I have Spongia 200C, should I order Spongia 30C?

It might be a good idea.

Usually my sister takes 3 doses a day for any medicine she’s on; but, you only recommend taking one dose of a remedy, especially if it’s 30C, and noting the progress.  Why is that?

That’s because if you’re lucky enough to get the right remedy and it’s working and you take a 2nd dose WHILE it is working, the second dose could antidote the first!  So, if it happens that there’s a striking improvement after the first dose, just stop dosing and repeat only if the case stalls or relapses.

If she takes spongia for her cough , can she keep taking Nux vomica LM 3 or should she stop?

My question would be, what is the Nux v. LM3 for, and is it doing any good–and why such a high potency?  Did she start with LM1?  What is Nux vomica supposed to get rid of?

This is part of her constitutional treatment.  Based on all her zillions of symptoms, doctor has given this now.  She took LM1 for 2 weeks, now she has to take LM3 for 3 weeks.

What happened to LM2?  And you say the LM3 is for three weeks?  Why?  It seems arbitrary!  You mean he didn’t say, “As she gets better, give less often?”  Or, “If she gets worse, stop the remedy?”  You’re just supposed to give it for 3 weeks no matter what?  What is so magical about 3 weeks?  Apparently everyone’s a psychic now, people just magically “know” that a remedy will be needed for 3 weeks….  Well, how interesting is that?

The only concrete indicator about how often to dose is the patient’s response to the previous dose; you’re always re-evaluating your dosing schedule and potency, the case could turn on a dime!  A client of mine whose daughter has seizures told me that “…after only 3 days on Cuprum 30C once a day, there’s such a striking improvement (more mentally alert, better mood, fewer petit mal seizures) that we’re stopping the remedy!  We’re just going to wait and watch now; but we’re fully prepared to start again if her mentals relapse or the seizures start to return.”  But imagine if I had said, “Give her Cuprum 30C once a day for 3 weeks,” when she only needed it for 3 days?  What would have happened?  An aggravation?  More seizures?  I don’t know, but I’d hate to think about it!  

“The minimum dose”….  It’s supposed to be our motto!

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Elaine Lewis, D.Hom., C.Hom.

Elaine takes online cases! Write to her at LEWRA@aol.com

Visit her website: elaineLewis.hpathy.com

About the author

Elaine Lewis

Elaine Lewis

Elaine Lewis, D.Hom., C.Hom.
Elaine is a passionate homeopath, helping people offline as well as online. Contact her at LEWRA@aol.com
Elaine is a graduate of Robin Murphy's Hahnemann Academy of North America and author of many articles on homeopathy including her monthly feature in the Hpathy ezine, "The Quiz". Visit her website at:
https://elainelewis.hpathy.com/ and TheSilhouettes.org

9 Comments

  • DEAR DR
    THE CORRECT REMEDY IS ALL THAT WE WANT. IT COVERS 99% IN MY OPINION. POTENCY IS NO PROBLEM. I THINK MORE THE CASE IS ACUTE, THE LOWER THE POTENCY AND QUICKER THE REPETITION. IN CHRONIC CASES WE MAY START WITH 200C REPETITION THEREAFTER DEPENDING UPON AGGRAVATION OR AMELIORATION
    THANKS

  • Dear Dr. Gupta,
    I realize this is the prevailing thought. But it is exactly backwards. The idea that the only thing that matters is having the correct remedy? Hahnemann says that the correct remedy in too high a potency or too-frequent repetitions can do more harm that a completely wrong remedy. See aph. 276.

    • Dear Elaine,
      GHG Jahr, one of Hahnemann’s closest collaborator in Paris, has left us with a huge amount of information, excellent books, skin repertory, emotional and mental illlnesses, Infants at the Breast, Clinical Instructions, etc. He expressively states that the potency is of low importance, and there is NO difference in the potency when treating physical and emotional problems. And he has had decades of experience treating all kinds of people in France together with Hahnemann. Most of his books are in German and French, I love them and hardly ever need any other books for reference except for looking at some of the more recent remedies. Dr Jahr also gives detailed instructions on how to treat acute and how to treat chronic cases. His works are invaluable to me.

  • DEAR DR
    200C IS NOT HIGHER IN CHRONIC CASE. IN ACUTE CASE WE MAY REPEAT BELLADONA 3 IN HIGH FEVER, EVERY HOUR OR MORE FREQUENTLY TILL THE FEVER IS DOWN–THIS IS ONLY EXAMPLE PROVIDED THE REMEDY IS CORRECT. MY PROF DR JUGAL KISHORE, WHO WAS NUMBER ONE PHYSICIAN OF HIS TIME TAUGHT US TO CONCENTRATE MORE ON FINDING A CORRECT REMEDY. WRONG REMEDY MEANS DOWNING FAITH ON HOMEOPATHY ITSELF. OK WITH HOMEOPATHY THE POTENCY DEPENDS ON THE NATURE OF THE REME DY AND METHOD AN INDIVIDUAL PRACTITIONER USES
    THANKS

  • Here’s what you’re saying: In the most intense cases, such as a Belladonna fever with sudden onset, you’re giving the remedy in the lowest potency; meaning, the least amount of “punch” or force. And in the least intense cases, as most chronic cases are, you’re giving remedies with strongest, the greatest amount of force! It makes no sense.

    Potency = Force

    An intense acute, such as a head injury or an animal bite, calls out for a potency that matches the urgency of the case. I’ve told this story before, but, at a party some years ago, something I ate didn’t agree with me and kept sending me to the bathroom! I took Arsenicum 30C and nothing happened; so, I began trying other likely remedies from my 30C kit–again, nothing happened! It was now the end of the party and I still wasn’t well! Finally someone offered me Arsenicum 200C in water and I recovered immediately! The 30C simply was not strong enough for this acute! Now, if 30C failed, and 200C worked, what do you suppose the 3 or 6C would have done? Absolutely nothing.
    I used to take Arnica 30C after dental surgery and not surprisingly, it accomplished nothing. Ultimately I had the opportunity to take Arnica 10M after a recent dental surgery and with complete success–no pain afterwards and no swelling!
    So, I think your theory about potency is completely backwards, will cause aggravations to chronic patients and leave many acute patients with no results.

  • Dear friends I think we should think of posology. In my knowledge correct sequence may like this 1. Correct simillimum. 2. Potency 3. Repetition.4. Form ( water, ointment, subcutaneous, nasal) etc.

  • DEAR DR,
    IN IMMEDIATE INJURY, I STILL USE ARNIC 6 FOUR OR MORE DOSES WITH CUP MET 6 WITH GOOD RESULT WITH NO AGGRAVATION. I USE ARNICA 200/1000 IN OLD CASES
    THANKS

  • Dr. Gupta, of course, each person is different in his or her sensitivity to remedies, meaning a 6C is going to work fine for some people, especially if repeated often. In general, however, your advice to give 200C and 1M to chronic cases is bound to cause aggravations in certain people. In general, you really have it backwards. Power should be met with power. Acutes are generally strong and require a strong response. Chronics are generally sluggish, hardened, intractable and require a daily chipping away at them, starting with a 6C in water, with succussions before each dose, 3 or 4 times a day, raising the potency as the previous one wears off, this way you don’t hurt anybody and you also have the option to treat acutes and injuries as they arise simply by stopping the chronic treatment, giving your acute remedy in a 30 or 200C as needed, then returning to your chronic treatment when the acute is over. You’re relieved of concerning yourself with antidoting factors, you don’t have to burden your patient with warnings about all the things that can antidote your 200C or 1M. However, I can also understand that in a busy practice in India, you may not have the time to be micro-managing a case, so you give a 200C, say “come back in month”, hope for the best, and it’s the best you can do under the circumstances. Though I can understand that, it’s not ideal.

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