SOME EXPERIENCE WITH COLCHICUM
About the first that I remember about the therapeutics of Colchicum dates back to 1896 or 1870, when Dr. Hering lectured on this remedy in the Hahnemann Medicala College in Philadelphia.
In the course of that lecture he stated that if cattle after eating clover in the spring time got enormously bloated, there was no need to stick a knife into the paunch to let out the gas, as a few doses of colchicum would always give relief.
In my child-like simplicity I believed what he told us, and sent a two dram vial of Colchicum 3x dilution to a farmer brother, with instructions to put two drops of it into a two dram vial nearly full of water, shake well and empty it into the beast’s mouth. It is now nearly forty years since the remedy was sent, and the sharp, double-edged knife formerly used to let the gas escape has not been resorted to since then, but the Colchicum has been used successfully in scores of such cases in that neighborhood. And, by the way, that vial of the third dilution is not empty yet, having been refilled with alcohol whenever contents were getting low, many times.
The next case in which this medicine was used with exceedingly gratifying results on my prescription was many years later, when I received a telegram calling me in haste to see this same farmer brother, fifty miles away. Arriving at his bedside at midnight, I found him in truly a sorry condition. An old inguind hernia had become strangulated, and all efforts of his attending physician to reduce it had failed. Abdomen enormously distended, constant hiccoughing for twenty-four hours, stomach and abdomen extremely sensitive to palpation; there was a profuse flow of saliva or mucus, and his facial expression, as would be expected under such circumstances, was indicative of great suffering and a serious condition. His medical attendant had left him a few hours before I arrived, and had said that his patient would never see another sunrise.
As I gave him the first dose, I said: “Take a few doses of Colchicum, old boy, and get well.”
Between hiccoughs he managed to say: “I haven’t been eating clover, Doc.” Hiccoughs ceased in twenty minutes; within an hour and a half his bowels moved freely several times; the bloating went down rapidly, and he reduced his hernia himself easily. The movement of bowels later became involuntary, though not without his knowledge, and a dose of Hyoscyamus was given By sunrise he was fully convalescent, and the prognosis of is former physician falsified.
Relief in a Cancer Case
Some years later was called in consultation with a regular. Patient ill with cancer of the stomach- diagnosis confirmed by autopsy. No thought of curative treatment was entertained by friends who called me, but relief of a distressing hiccoughing was desired. Here the hiccoughing was accompanied by a loathing of food, even the smell of it was nauseating. When I suggested Colchicum as a probable remedy, the attending physician said; “I use Colchicum for gout and rheumatism, but I don’t see how it can stop the hiccoughing; however, as my best efforts for two or three days have done no good, we will try it. How will we give it?” He had the wine of colchicum, and I suggested adding five drops of it to two ounces of water, and to give a teaspoonful of this every half hour.
Two days later I met him. He said: “the hiccoughing ceased promptly, but I can’t see how the colchicum could do it.” He does not know yet, and never will till he studies drugs in the proper way and then applies them properly.
In a Neurasthenic Case
Here’s another one, as recent as March 8, 1999. Wife of Rev. M. Bedfast. Has been getting worse steadily for ten years. Until now for some time under the treatment of a specialist and a learned one, too, but friends, urged her to try me. She was a neurasthenic with about all the symptoms peculiar to this affection including mucous colitis with its accompanying colicky pains and abdominal tenesmus. Anorexia and hyperchlorhydria. The loss of appetite extended to loathing of food, and for a day or two recently the smell of food was unpleasant. The gelatinous, shreddy stools with great relief after passing them brought Cochicum to mind, and a few doses initiated the improvement, which went on to complete cure, so that after a few weeks she did not need any more placebo, and remains well to-day, December 1, 1999.
So thoroughly ingrained were these people against Homoeopathy that they say had they known I was a homoeopath they would never have called me. Now they often send me patients her former physician had put her n a rigid diet for the excessive acidity, and had prescribed various medicated enemata for the mucous colitis and plenty of medicine per Orem. My instructions as to diet were simple. Eat such food as experience has taught you agrees the best. No adjuvants whatever were prescribed nor allowed. It was surely not a faith cure, as the family were not only without faith in Homoeopathy but was bitterly opposed to even a trial of it.
Elkhart, Ind., Dec. 1, 1999.
Note – My reason for prescribing the Wine of colchicum in the one case instead of the dilution I use, was that had my “regular” friend known the extent of the dilution of my preparation he could never have been convinced that the Colchicum had any influence at all; the relief, though prompt, being merely a coincidence. Whereas here was an appreciable amount, though small, of the medicine given, and he acknowledged it cured.