Monday, March 23, 2009

YouTube Homeopathy Video Blog 4


LINK: 10 minutes

Warning… not my favorite video of the group, but a chance to set the record straight -as usual :)

Right off the bat, Vidal makes a quick statement that the mental symptoms (experienced by a patient) can take up to a year to change. This is mostly incorrect. Mental symptoms and especially those that are troubling are the most likely to be the first symptoms to improve. Homeopathy is really the only medical system that I am aware of that connects mental health to physical health intrinsically. Homeopaths will mostly admit that a sense of well-being is the first relieving symptom that is experienced by a well-chosen remedy. It is true that many chronic patients don’t realize their progress for a while… a good homeopath will insist that the patient take down and realize their symptoms before treatment begins and then reflect on those at some later date (as a comparison).

It is hard to quantify the time taken to heal/cure a chronic illness and Vidal is having a hard time expressing this point. When she says that a patient sees no results in two months that should be the exception to a case and not the rule as she makes it seem. Of course homeopathy will take longer to HEAL a patient than “taking a pill”. The pill is not healing the patient… just keeping their symptoms from bothering them. This is not healing, this is not curing. It is called palliation and suppression.

The interviewer makes it seem that the patient must be ready to heal in order for homeopathy to be effective. Believe and it will work? I won’t even begin to go down the road of new age “build it and he will come” philosophy. Homeopathy is a true medical art and not a belief system. The patient must adhere to following the advice of the homeopath… stay sober, eat well, exercise… and take your remedy as advised. That’s it. If the homeopath has done their job, you will get better; you will heal.

Taking a bunch of remedies incorrectly is NOT a strong reason for then giving a remedy in a higher potency. Vidal speaks of a child with a major coughing problem… children are strong souls with hardy constitutions (as a rule) and will respond better to higher potencies than adults. Children have a strong Vital Force that has not been complicated by bad living and suppressive drugs (yet). They also generally have not had their illness for that long and do not have a compromised response to the remedy. High potency is normally used in these cases as with younger animals (e.g., dogs and cats). They can just handle it better than us old folks. Yes, this is contrary to the way allopathic medicine works… allopathic prescribing is lesser for younger and smaller and more for adult and bigger people. Remember that homeopathy is about the stimulation of the Vital Force… it is just stronger in younger people (esp children) and can be pushed farther in those instances. I am always quite amazed that it works so well in children and animals that are very ill… and the results are often amazingly permanent within a short time.

The young boy with the cough was considerably helped by homeopathy (from attacks every three weeks of coughing and hospital emergencies to one in two years). Homeopathic case books are full of these “miracles”. So much so that homeopaths are disappointed not to have tangible results such as this. Vidal is again beating the stress-of-the-world drum again. The stress of the world today with traffic and twitter is nothing compared to going to the homeopath fifty miles away and leaving a day ahead to get there (uphill both ways!).

Homeopathy IS concerned about the source of illness, but not to the extent that Vidal makes it seem. She over-emphasizes it a bit. Psychology is for psychologists and psychiatrists (et al). There are some concerns of basic fear, delusion, etc, but only to finding the remedy (Simillimum) of the case… not for psycho-analysis. Vidal does not get to the heart of the problem with her case… and that is a discussion of the miasms (still working on a miasm post for your future reading pleasure… can hardly wait).

It is true that the pregnancy and birth of a child can influence basic remedies of that child in illness… but it is not necessary to know this information.

Next, Video 5 of 6 (two more to go… hope you are enjoying the discussion).

Monday, March 16, 2009

An Example of Acute Homeopathy (Part 1)

The following is a real life example of homeopathy in action. Names and/or gender have been changed to protect the innocent (nudge, wink).

So you may be wondering how to put this homeopathy together and get something useful from it. After all, it would be a fairly worthless mental exercise if you couldn’t benefit from its truly wonderful properties. So let’s take a case, an acute case.

Let the sick guy sing…

Applying homeopathy to an acute (short lived) illness is pretty straight forward, but there is always room for a few rules. The first rule is to let the patient explain their sickness… in their own words. You as the practitioner should zip it at this point… no joke. There is a great tendency to sympathize with a sick person and fit your own version of pain, cough, sneeze, whatever, into the discussion. Focus on THEIR words and act as if you have never experienced their illness, so you don’t have a clue as to how it may feel.

If you are stuck with one of those “I ain’t sick, nuthin’ wrong here” kind of guys (patients) and you can’t budge even the most simple of symptoms out of him, mention that it sounds like a case for the enema bag. That will usually “loosen” up some symptoms and reasons not to bring out the ole red bladder. A couple of “and what else is wrong?” questions should get the rest of the pertinent symptoms to gush forth (so to speak).

Write like the wind…

While you are listening intently to his exhausting list of symptoms (hopefully a lengthy list), don’t even think you can remember it all… write it down. In fact, list it like you are going to the grocery store to find these symptoms. Then, later organize that list from most important to least important symptoms (even the non-important). Yes, you will find that his eyebrows have not grown back from that last barbeque pit incident, but that “symptom” has nothing to do with this recent bout of illness.

But, that is not a problem here. This brow-less one seems to catch every illness known to man and a few that haven’t even been thought up. Either way, document even the most annoying rant from this poor sick soul.

Our Grill-flaming expert expounds on the expanding pressure just center of his body; an annoying fullness triggered by that last espresso. Well, even Backyard BBQ Bob can dance the barista lombada with the best of them. Lucky for us, he goes on and on just to make sure we realize that he is experiencing real pain. The kind of pain that takes some complaining: extreme manly complaining.

Retire to your fortress of solitude, super-homeopath…

Find a quiet little hide-away far from the moans and groans of your latest victim (um, I mean, patient) and settle in for the duration…

Now the analysis begins. What? You say analyzing is not your cup of tea? Well, if you can use a dictionary, you are good to go on this part too. Simply pick up your repertory and find all of those pesky little symptoms that you listed from the last part.

What repertory? Well, a good start would be the “Boger-Boenninghausen Repertory” (aka, Boenninghausen's Characteristics and Repertory and from now on described as the B-B). At about $30 shipped and a bit north of 900 pages, it is well equipped to keep you riveted for some page-turning excitement (not). Well, it lists most of the symptoms you are likely to come across in repertorizing the BBQ King’s latest illness. You just have to figure out where those symptoms are listed and go to town. And like any good tool, it takes some getting used to. With every little cold and cough, you will eventually get over its hefty bulk. A few key bookmarks (say 20 or so) won’t hurt either.

Listing the rude bricks…

I had a four year old homeopath (honorary degree from Wikipedia U.) consult with me on a case once and discovered that the symptoms listed in the repertory were called “rude bricks”. This may be because the important symptoms can sneak up behind you and hit you on the head. No one knows for sure. For the sake of accuracy, we will call them “rubrics” instead.

Now how I describe a particular symptom may not be the same way Mr BBQ describes his symptoms. I may say that I have a pain in the upper part of my stomach and he might say that he has a pressure kind of ow-ee in his epigastrium. The way symptoms are described in the B-B repertory or rubrics is as generic as it gets, but you do need to know some body parts and their official names. And you need to be able to translate bbq-speak into repertory-speak. So Barbi-Meister is correct in locating and naming the upper part of the abdomen, the epigastrium (lucky for us). Don’t worry, there are only a few of these “doctor” names for common body parts and you will survive learning them with a quick look at any book on anatomy or just checking Allopathy-for-less magazine online when you get stumped.

By the way, a book on anatomy that cost some poor medical smuck $250 is readily available used from or Ebay for pennies on the dollar (I found one almost new for $4). Invest in one and you won’t need to crank up the Google thingie. By the way, we used to use these things called books before Google came along and they still work quite well no matter what you may have heard.

So what do our rubrics tell us. We open the B-B and look for the section on Epigastrium.

Symptom from BBQ Man/ Remedy listed in B-B

BBQ: Pressure in the upper abdomen (epigastrium)
B-B: Epigastrium pressure pg 524: ARS, CARB-V, CHAM, CUP, NAT-M, NUX-V, PHO, PUL, RHUS-T, VER-A

BBQ: Pressure triggered by espresso…
B-B: Aggravations after coffee pg527: CHAM, NUX-V

BBQ: Excessive manly complaints of the pain
B-B: Complaining (excessive) pg532: NUX-V

BBQ: Catches unknown illnesses (all the time)
B-B: Hypochondriasis pg532: NUX-V

BBQ: Flame-broiled eyebrows
B-B: No known symptom No known remedy

As you may note, the most common remedy that is seen in all four of the symptoms is NUX-V (red font for the homeopathically-impaired). This is how it is done (basically). The one remedy that covers the most symptoms wins! Well, not all the time, but here it does… Yippee!

NUX-V is the abbreviation for Nux Vomica… poison nut, “Quaker’s buttons” and it contains among other things, strychnine. Its poisonous properties are well known in controlling pests and use in homicides. And, no matter how much we may gladly imagine the use of the original crude material, we are resigned to give our suspecting Starbucks fanatic the extremely diluted homeopathic variation to affect a cure.

By the way, all the remedies in the B-B repertory are abbreviated. This is to make it easy to remember these Latin-ized, poly-syllabic word conflagrations. Anything to make it easy is alright by me.

Give your $.02 (of remedy)...

We now open our little case of remedies… yes that case of the top 50 or 100 remedies that you purchased some time ago. No? You didn’t get that $150 case of remedies yet? That set that will last most of your lifetime? What are you waiting for? Are you waiting until you get sick? I don’t think Fedex delivers that fast, but it’s up to you to be prepared. For those that are ready with your bottles of remedies, you take one little tiny pillet from the NUX-V bottle and tap it into the cap… walk briskly over to the unsuspecting grill-eyed patient and drop it cleanly into his hand. Bottoms up! He will probably stand deer-eyed and shocked that a tiny pill could do so much (or is that a late night infomercial for Extendz)… anyway, I digress. Synchronize your watches, for within an hour that distrusting look of confusion will vanish from the face of BBQ-Man as fast as he normally finishes the last beer in the fridge. Yes, the bewildered patient will experience some quick relief indeed. And all without the poopy-go-squirt bag you would have had to use before. The End.

Oh, for those that noticed this was Part 1- IT IS Part 1 of 1. And, yes this really did happen… except, it was a capucinno, half fat, mocha, latte, grande, chile-piqueno.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

YouTube Homeopathy Video Blog 3


LINK: 9 minutes

Vidal describes the process of homeopathic treatment to healing and distinguishes the time it takes with the pathology of the disease (the progression and extent of the disease treated) and the individual’s Vital Force. A stronger constitution in the individual will respond better and faster as the Vital Force is stronger. Also, long existing disease will beat down and weaken the Vital Force. The curing aspect in this latter situation will require more time as the weakened Vital Force cannot effect change as quickly.

A good overview of how the remedy is chosen based upon many aspects of the patient’s life, not just their illness.

The interviewer talks more than usual and side tracks the discussion.

For those that already know a bit about homeopathy, this video is a nothing new. A homeopath listens and doesn’t speak much during the initial visit. The patient unloads as much as possible for them and is encouraged to do so. For those who aren’t familiar with the consultation process in homeopathy, Vidal is spot on to the process and gives insight that will not be apparent until you have more experience. If you study more about homeopathy, please return to this in the future and pay particular attention to the last third of the video.

More to come…

Friday, March 6, 2009

YouTube Homeopathy Video Blog 2


LINK: 10 minutes

Japanese doctor photographing water reference...

Vidal is talking about Dr Emoto and some information is found here...

How homeopathic remedies work is still up for debate. Emoto's work leaves a lot to be desired and I will let it go at that.

Vidal talks about there being more and more proof that homeopathy works...

The bottom line is... Yes we do need proof and Hahnemann said several times that to prove Homeopathy, APPLY IT CORRECTLY; that people need only test it on themselves.

Good discussion of making remedies (not exactly accurate but close enough for argument's sake).

You can treat acute illness fairly easily, but chronic illness is too complex to treat yourself. Just because acute illness many times is part of chronic does not mean that treating it is not beneficial. In treating acute disease you will better understand what is needed in chronic treatment and will be able to better help a homeopath that may treat your chronic illness.

It is also very hard to find a competent homeopath in some areas of the USA. In that event, learning as much as possible before venturing into homeopathy is necessary. I am of the mind that better to treat yourself than not get treatment at all.

It is also important to understand homeopathy to some extent to be able to evaluate a homeopath that you are considering for treating your illness.

The interviewer says,
"Stick to it (homeopathic treatment)! "
Homeopathy takes some patience to completely realize its gain.

In the long run of homeopathic chronic treatment, Vidal is correct that homeopathy is MUCH less expensive than allopathic medicine; even without insurance coverage.

Vidal finishes by touching on aggravations. She doesn't make the point of how well homeopathy works and gets a bit tongue-tied. The reality is that with competent care, the patient should realize some tangible gains almost immediately and within a reasonable interval will experience greater curative gains than with almost any other treatment. This goes for acute as well as chronic treatment.

Aggravations or a worsening of symptoms experienced by the patient is not uncommon. Because the point of homeopathy is to apply a similar disease to the ill patient, the patient is more susceptible to the “illness” created by the remedy. This should be obvious as the patient is already experiencing the illness (set of symptoms). Applying a strong remedy will generate an aggravation because the patient is more susceptible to the symptoms created by the remedy. Hahnemann late in his life advised against generating aggravations in the patient and he did this by formulating the idea of the “minimal dose”. See the post on this subject.

On to Video 3 next time...

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

YouTube Homeopathy Video Blog

You can wade through the videos available on YouTube about homeopathy and feel disheartened. They portray homeopathy as crazy, unfounded, and give the viewer the feeling that you would have to be an idiot to investigate it. After all, if it is on the internet some feel it must be right and well thought out. This could not be further from the truth. Most of the video (youtube) information available on homeopathy is simply wrong (putting it mildly). Having said that, I have found a series of interviews on youtube that give a generally accurate view of homeopathy. I will give links to each video and some comments, critiques, and general thoughts about the videos individually. The critique is intended to bring out the differences to what Hahnemann specifically taught (if there are any differences). Hope you enjoy the view…


Link: 10 minutes

Critique and Notes about the video…

The interviewer in the video series is a chiropractor and occasionally gets in the way of the discussion. Later videos are more obvious to this point.

Vidal has come to homeopathy through a serious illness. This is very common as many of the original homeopaths were deathly ill, given up by allopathy and eventually cured by homeopathy. This lead them to take up the cause. Boenninghausen was one of those and his lengthy ordeal can be found in his book “Lesser Writings”.

Vidal started with treatment for sinus infection which as a rule is really the first layer of a more chronic (long term) illness. The fact that the infections recur while under allopathic treatment is a testament to their chronic nature. Many can attest that sinus trouble is never actually cured by allopathic treatment, but is treated fairly swiftly through homeopathy.

She (Vidal) speaks of primarily environmental causes to illness (stress, chemicals, etc), but Hahnemann founded other more pervasive causes that were “inherited” from parents and past generations. These causes are termed “miasms” and are not really hereditary or genetic as we view it in allopathy.

Notice Vidal’s analogy of “like cures like” in her discussion of allergy symptoms being similar to symptoms from cutting up an onion. This example is used quite often and does make the point. You have to listen closely to her in the video to get it.

Vidal states that there are many forms of homeopathy... Yes, many have attempted to follow other ideas that were not stated by Hahnemann. Many homeopaths have simply never read the original works closely and make up (or discover) their own forms of homeopathy. There is only one way that Hahnemann presented homeopathy. It can be built upon and should be, but it should first be thoroughly studied before it can be modified (as with any idea).

Vidal obviously has given the subject some thought and does present the basics well.

Next time video 2.