Eugene Underhill, Jr., M. D., Philadelphia, Pa.
Until your own experience and careful observation show you a better way I would suggest that you lay aside all prejudice and give the following procedure a fair and honest trial. It is the method followed by the majority of the very best prescribers and practitioners of pure homoeopathy. Equip yourself with the following potencies of the polychrests.
30th (Centesimal), 200th, 1000th, 10M, 50M, and CM.
In the early months or even years of your practice you will rarely need the 50M or CM. Add to your stock of remedies and range of potencies as you need them or as your finances may justify.
Have all bottles labeled and corks also stamped or labeled with both name and potency. I cannot too strongly condemn the practice of some physicians who content themselves with merely having the corks labeled. Some day the corks may get mixed and in a desperate case a life may be sacrificed. Keep your medicines in a safe place, preferably under lock and key, away from curious eyes and meddlesome fingers, away from too much heat, away from direct sunlight. Keep and care for your medicines yourself. This is not a job for your nurse, secretary or assistant. It is so vital, so essential you had better do it yourself. Careless handling, contaminating or mixing remedies and potencies may defeat all your efforts and study and turn you from success to failure.
Your knowledge, your books, your remedies – where indeed would the homoeopathist be without any one of these and the more perfect and complete this trinity the more glorious his success and his service to his fellow men.
Assuming therefore that we have a stock of 30th, 200th, 1000th, 10M, 50M and CM potencies of the polychrest remedies and such other remedies as may from time to time be needed, how are we to proceed?
It the case is acute such as pneumonia or any other acute illness give a single dose of preferably the 200th potency. Follow this with Sacharrum lactis as often as the relatives or friends seem to require it to keep them quiet.
If your remedy was correctly chosen and is homoeopathic to the case the remedy will act and you will know it. There may or may not be an aggravation that you can detect as such.
If there is a homoeopathic aggravation following the remedy give more Sac. Lac. And wait. Improvement will nearly always follow.
If there is no aggravation improvement will nevertheless occur in curable cases if your remedy was correctly chosen. If the remedy does not act the trouble is not usually the potency used or failure of homoeopathy, but your own failure to choose the correct remedy.
In the great majority of cases the patient will get well without repetition or change of remedy or potency. If the patient merely recovers on schedule and the pneumonia or typhoid runs its full course he convinced you never chose the correct remedy. Homoeopathy did not fail. You failed. If the case gets well almost like magic your remedy selection was correct.
The law of similars will always work when all of its conditions are complied with.
If, after the remedy, improvement sets in followed by a relapse or no further gain, what are we to do?
It is probable the remedy given was only partially similar to the case.
Go over your symptoms again and if the same remedy appears to be indicated you had now best give it in the 1000th potency and follow with Sac. Lac. And watchful waiting. If a different remedy is indicated give in the same potency as the previous remedy – namely the 200th potency.
If more than two doses of medicine are required to pull across an acute case you have probably not had the correct remedy.
If you are not convinced of the power of the 30th and higher potencies to cure after a year’s work with them it will simply mean that you still do not know how to find the similimum.
In chronic cases you may often begin with the 30th potency although many begin with the 200th.
Give the remedy yourself and follow with Sac. Lac. Perhaps one, two or three times a day. Sac. Lac helps to keep patients from taking other drugs and doing some of their own doctoring.
Hahnemann said a physician should have character enough to give sugar of milk.
Stuart Close calls Sac. Lac. “the second best remedy,” and certain it is that nothing is usually a safe thing to take and it may be prescribed for what ails the patient and as often as necessary.
However, do not be too lavish with your use of Sac. lac. Or it will lose its magic charm. Sac. lac. Is one of the essential factors in holding the patient and for relieving him of pain, insomnia, nervousness, constipation, diarrhoea, headache, indigestion, etc. Hahnemann called it a “divine gift of God.”
When in doubt give Sac. lac. And study up your case. When you know you are right then go ahead and give your remedy. In case of an emergency if the remedy is not clear call a consultant. Don’t waste your time and the patient’s money on an old school consultant. Get some one who can really help you.
The homoeopathic remedy in chronic cases may never require repetition, that is one dose may cure the patient.
Again the more often repetition or change or potency is required the more probable it is that your remedy is wrong. The correct remedy will act in chronic cases for weeks, months or even years. Don’t jet your conscience trouble you if you haven’t given a certain patient a dose of medicine for over a year. If he is still improving why worry, why repeat? Leave the prescription alone.
A graduate from Hahnemann Medical College told me that his conscience wouldn’t let him give only one dose of medicine to a sick patient and that in a high potency like the 200th or the 1000th. Now anybody whose conscience is that tender and delicate will bear watching. A physician of this type would give morphine, alternate drugs and behave generally like a regular old school horse doctor and strange to say his conscience would stand the strain.
Now when the remedy ceases to act curatively wait a while and if you are sincere and don’t lose your nerve you probably won’t lose your patient.
However, don’t worry about losing patients when you know you are doing the right thing by them. You will hold the majority of them. No one will hold them all nor can he save them all. If after waiting a few weeks improvement does not begin again you may repeat in the same potency as before and if the remedy is the similimum or even a near similar improvement will begin again. As a rule three or more doses of a given potency will all produce results when the remedy is correct. When the fourth of fifth dose becomes necessary you had better give a higher potency. Each time before giving the remedy cheek over your symptoms and make sure your remedy is still similar to the case. As a general rule I would say that a year for one potency is a short time – usually all too short. Often the true similimum will unmistakably continue to act – one dose only at that – for over two years.
The bad effects of vaccination – a single dose will last some times for years. “Doctor, he has never been well since he was vaccinated.” You will hear mothers say this very thing and they know what they are talking about when they say it. Don’t lose any sleep over the single remedy, the single dose or the high potency. Don’t jump around like a wild Indian from the 30th to the CM potency then back to the 10M all on the same case. This is one of the ways to spoil a case so you can’t tell how things stand. Don’t be too sure either that you can spot just the right potency to give a patient. Until you have had a vast experience you had better play safe by adhering for the most part of the plan herewith suggested, which I again repeat: Begin with the 30th or 200th. Give the remedy ample time to act. Don’t repeat until you are sure and absolutely convinced the remedy has ceased to act. You may then repeat in the same potency. A third or fourth dose should be given before stepping up to the next higher potency in the series. Each time make sure your remedy is the similimum.
No doubt the development and perfection of the electronic methods and instruments will some day not only enable us to select the homoeopathic remedy wit little or no mental strain but these instruments will also (with the patient’s blood specimen) show what potency of the remedy to use. In that day prescribing will be so exact that rarely will a second dose, a change of potency or change or remedy be required. But until that day we must go through with the daily grind and I honestly believe the best results in homoeopathic practice today are obtained by those who are in substantial agreement with the procedure as outlined.