Monday, 16 February 2015

Chelidonium, More than a Liver Remedy: Learn A Drug Challenge

Books Referred:  The Essence of Materia Medica, Vithoulkas
                              Leaders in Homoeopathic Therapeutics, Nash
                              Lectures on Homoeopathic Materia Medica, Kent
                             A Dictionary of Practical Materia Medica, Clarke
The Essence of Materia Medica was a much neglected book in my library. It was out of sheer disappointment in finding a similimum to a close acquaintance whose mental generals were a common knowledge in our household that I happened to chance upon this book. The similimum was selected, prescribed and the patient was cured. Thus started my love for this book and I started reading this book religiously for a long time.
Chelidonium was a drug you prescribed in tincture form for those with liver troubles, which summed up my knowledge of Chelidonium till I read Vithoulkas’s Essence of Materia Medica. Chelidonium does have a mind of its own. “Constant pain under the lower and inner angle of right scapula”, a dark lettered symptom in Allen’s Keynotes is known to one and all, who know about Chelidonium.  Nash goes on to add that “This very characteristic symptom may be found in connection with general jaundice, cough, diarrhea, pneumonia, menses, loss of milk, exhaustion etc., in fact, no matter what the name of the disease this symptom present should always bring to mind Chelidonium and close scouting will generally reveal hepatic troubles or complications as would be naturally expected with such a remedy.”
Chelidonium are forceful, dictatorial individuals. They like to force their opinions on others.
They give their advices and if those advices are not acted upon, they feel insulted. They do not hesitate to fight for their own rights or opinions. Chelidonium patients are not at all sentimental. They are realists. They can be quite domineering over a person on whom they have a strong attachment to. They have a great anxiety over the health of such persons. They have anxiety over their own health too. They will have check-up by the most qualified doctors. They want something practical to be done right away for their problems. They do not hesitate to voice their suspicions about the doctor’s diagnosis and treatment measures. This pretty much sums up the mind of a Chelidonium as described by Vithoulkas. You could read the book for a much more detailed explanation. Please remember that Chelidonium patients are slow to respond after the remedy is given. To make matters worse, these patients do not report improvement until they see “tangible, objective, incontrovertible results.”

I would say that the three important symptoms to keep in mind while reading Chelidonium are, The constant pain under the lower and inner angle of scapula, The modalities and The Right sidedness. Like how I quoted from Nash with regards to the scapular pain needs to be kept in mind while prescribing Chelidonium. In acute cases this scapular pain is necessary for prescribing Chelidonium. The Chelidonium is a right sided remedy, right eye, right shoulder, right knee, the liver, the right base of the lung in pneumonia, right foot cold as ice etc. The Chelidonium patients are aggravated by cold except the headaches, sinusitis and neuralgias. Their ailments are brought on or renewed by change of weather. They do not like to touch or move their painful parts. 4am aggravation as opposed to the 4pm aggravation of Lycopodium, is also present in Chelidonium.

Moving on to their sphere of action, I would be talking about three spheres of action, namely, the liver, the lungs and the arthritis. Please not that there are neuralgias, headaches etc. too in Chelidonium. The liver is the main seat of action of the remedy and the pain under the lower and inner angle of scapula is the most prominent feature. The look of the patient is that of jaundiced, with thickly coated yellow tongue, red margins and takes the imprint of teeth. There is a bitter taste in the mouth and loss of appetite. There is vomiting, it would also seem that the person could retain nothing but hot drinks. There is a strong desire for milk too. There is alternate constipation and diarrhea. The stools in diarrhea would be clayey. There is a constant pain in the stomach ameliorated by eating and eructation. Movement increases the pain. Gallstone colic too requires a mention as Chelidonium provides a rapid relief where indicated.
Chelidonium is indicated in right sided pneumonia or right side spreading to the left. Sharp febrile attacks with chill. The pleura are generally involved and the patient sits still, as motion aggravates the pain. There is asthma brought about by changes in weather and is aggravated at night. Chelidonium could have a chronic cough, spasmodic, dry and violent. Nash says, “Sometimes in coughs which are persistent with much pain through right side of the chest and into shoulder, Chelidonium helps us out and saves the patient from what might easily terminate in consumption”.
The arthritis too is brought on by changes in weather and the pains are aggravated by motion. The right sidedness is also a feature here. There is involvement of the right shoulder and both knees with some preference for right knee. There are neuralgias of the limbs too.
There is a close relation between Chelidonium and Lycopodium. Vithoulkas gives an account of a beautiful differentiation between the two. Nash adds, if in a chronic case, some antipsoric like Lycopodium might have to be called in, according to indications, of course, to help complete a cure, but Chelidonium would be the chief reliance.

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