Friday, March 29, 2013



And here, in order to give those who are not familiar with, the process of digestion, a clear idea of that important operation, and the effect produced when alcohol is taken with food, we quote from the lecture of an English physician, Dr. Henry Monroe, on "The Physiological Action of Alcohol." He says:

"Every kind of substance employed by man as food consists of sugar, starch, oil and glutinous matters, mingled together in various proportions; these are designed for the support of the animal frame. The glutinous principles of food  fibrine, albumen  and  casein  are employed to build up the structure; while the  oil, starch  and  sugar  are chiefly used to generate heat in the body.

"The first step of the digestive process is the breaking up of the food in the mouth by means of the jaws and teeth. On this being done, the saliva, a viscid liquor, is poured into the mouth from the salivary glands, and as it mixes with the food, it performs a very important part in the operation of digestion, rendering the starch of the food soluble, and gradually changing it into a sort of sugar, after which the other principles become more miscible with it. Nearly a pint of saliva is furnished every twenty-four hours for the use of an adult. When the food has been masticated and mixed with the saliva, it is then passed into the stomach, where it is acted upon by a juice secreted by the filaments of that organ, and poured into the stomach in large quantities whenever food comes in contact with its mucous coats. It consists of a dilute acid known to the chemists as hydrochloric acid, composed of hydrogen and chlorine, united together in certain definite proportions. The gastric juice contains, also, a peculiar organic-ferment or decomposing substance, containing nitrogen something of the nature of yeast termed  pepsine , which is easily soluble in the acid just named. That gastric juice acts as a simple chemical solvent, is proved by the fact that, after death, it has been known to dissolve the stomach itself."

It is an error to suppose that, after a good dinner, a glass of spirits or beer assists digestion; or that any liquor containing alcohol even bitter beer can in any way assist digestion. Mix some bread and meat with gastric juice; place them in a phial, and keep that phial in a sand-bath at the slow heat of 98 degrees, occasionally shaking briskly the contents to imitate the motion of the stomach; you will find, after six or eight hours, the whole contents blended into one pultaceous mass. If to another phial of food and gastric juice, treated in the same way, I add a glass of pale ale or a quantity of alcohol, at the end of seven or eight hours, or even some days, the food is scarcely acted upon at all. This is a fact; and if you are led to ask why, I answer, because alcohol has the peculiar power of chemically affecting or decomposing the gastric juice by precipitating one of its principal constituents, viz., pepsine, rendering its solvent properties much less efficacious. Hence alcohol can not be considered either as food or as a solvent for food. Not as the latter certainly, for it refuses to act with the gastric juice.

"'It is a remarkable fact,' says Dr. Dundas Thompson, 'that alcohol, when added to the digestive fluid, produces a white precipitate, so that the fluid is no longer capable of digesting animal or vegetable matter.' 'The use of alcoholic stimulants,' say Drs. Todd and Bowman, 'retards digestion by coagulating the pepsine, an essential element of the gastric juice, and thereby interfering with its action. Were it not that wine and spirits are rapidly absorbed, the introduction of these into the stomach, in any quantity, would be a complete bar to the digestion of food, as the pepsine would be precipitated from the solution as quickly as it was formed by the stomach.' Spirit, in any quantity, as a dietary adjunct, is pernicious on account of its antiseptic qualities, which resist the digestion of food by the absorption of water from its particles, in direct antagonism to chemical operation."

Wednesday, March 13, 2013



I once had the unusual, though unhappy, opportunity of observing the same phenomenon in the brain structure of a man, who, in a paroxysm of alcoholic excitement, decapitated himself under the wheel of a railway carriage, and whose brain was instantaneously evolved from the skull by the crash. The brain itself, entire, was before me within three minutes after the death. It exhaled the odor of spirit most distinctly, and its membranes and minute structures were vascular in the extreme. It looked as if it had been recently injected with vermilion. The white matter of the cerebrum, studded with red points, could scarcely be distinguished, when it was incised, by its natural whiteness; and the pia-mater, or internal vascular membrane covering the brain, resembled a delicate web of coagulated red blood, so tensely were its fine vessels engorged.

I should add that this condition extended through both the larger and the smaller brain, the cerebrum and cerebellum, but was not so marked in the medulla or commencing portion of the spinal cord.

The spinal cord and nerves.

The action of alcohol continued beyond the first stage, the function of the spinal cord is influenced. Through this part of the nervous system we are accustomed, in health, to perform automatic acts of a mechanical kind, which proceed systematically even when we are thinking or speaking on other subjects. Thus a skilled workman will continue his mechanical work perfectly, while his mind is bent on some other subject; and thus we all perform various acts in a purely automatic way, without calling in the aid of the higher centres, except something more than ordinary occurs to demand their service, upon which we think before we perform. Under alcohol, as the spinal centres become influenced, these pure automatic acts cease to be correctly carried on. That the hand may reach any object, or the foot be correctly planted, the higher intellectual centre must be invoked to make the proceeding secure. There follows quickly upon this a deficient power of co-ordination of muscular movement. The nervous control of certain of the muscles is lost, and the nervous stimulus is more or less enfeebled. The muscles of the lower lip in the human subject usually fail first of all, then the muscles of the lower limbs, and it is worthy of remark that the extensor muscles give way earlier than the flexors. The muscles themselves, by this time, are also failing in power; they respond more feebly than is natural to the nervous stimulus; they, too, are coming under the depressing influence of the paralyzing agent, their structure is temporarily deranged, and their contractile power reduced.

This modification of the animal functions under alcohol, marks the second degree of its action. In young subjects, there is now, usually, vomiting with faintness, followed by gradual relief from the burden of the poison.

Effect on the brain centres.

The alcoholic spirit carried yet a further degree, the cerebral or brain centres become influenced; they are reduced in power, and the controlling influences of will and of judgment are lost. As these centres are unbalanced and thrown into chaos, the rational part of the nature of the man gives way before the emotional, passional or organic part. The reason is now off duty, or is fooling with duty, and all the mere animal instincts and sentiments are laid atrociously bare. The coward shows up more craven, the braggart more boastful, the cruel more merciless, the untruthful more false, the carnal more degraded. ' In vino veritas ' expresses, even, indeed, to physiological accuracy, the true condition. The reason, the emotions, the instincts, are all in a state of carnival, and in chaotic feebleness.

Finally, the action of the alcohol still extending, the superior brain centres are overpowered; the senses are beclouded, the voluntary muscular prostration is perfected, sensibility is lost, and the body lies a mere log, dead by all but one-fourth, on which alone its life hangs. The heart still remains true to its duty, and while it just lives it feeds the breathing power. And so the circulation and the respiration, in the otherwise inert mass, keeps the mass within the bare domain of life until the poison begins to pass away and the nervous centres to revive again. It is happy for the inebriate that, as a rule, the brain fails so long before the heart that he has neither the power nor the sense to continue his process of destruction up to the act of death of his circulation. Therefore he lives to die another day.

Monday, March 4, 2013

HOMOEOPATHY - Introduction

HOMOEOPATHY - Introduction

Homoeopathy is a system of medicine introduced by a german physician Dr Samuel Hahnemann.He was basically an allopathic doctor who has left the practise because of side effects and temporary relief of symptoms of allopathy.For his bread and butter he started translating the medical books to different languages.While he was translating cullen's materia medica he came across a herbal medicine called cinchona.It was written that cinchona can cure malaria and it can also produce symptoms similar to malaria on healthy individuals.This point clicked hahnemann's brain and he prepared an extract of cinchona bark and taken himself.To his surprise he developed some symptoms of malaria like chills and achings.He started doing the same experiment on different individuals and the result was the same.

By this experiment hahnemann came to know that any drug which can produce a set of symptoms on a healthy humanbeing can be used to cure the similar symptoms in a diseased person.He gave cinchona to various malaria patients and the result was wonderful and a system called homoeopathy originated.The word homoeo means similar,pathy means suffering.The basic principle of homoeopathy is 'similia similibus curantur' means like cures cure.Hahnemann prepared some other drugs using alcohol as a vehicle and started experimenting on different age groups and noted down the symptoms produced in them.He proved nearly 30 drugs and the symptoms produced  were noted down systematically.The symptoms collected by drug proving were categorised in the order in a book form  named materia medica pura.
Hahnemann noticed that by diluting the crude drug substences in spirit a dynamic power is developed and is responsible for producing the symptoms on healthy people.Hahnemann started giving treatement to somany diseased persons with the medicines prepared by him on applying the principle similia similibus curantur and got wonderful cures and homoeopathy started spreading all over the world.
He gave medicines to some patients and noticed that symptoms are coming back again.So he understood that the cause for the disease should be treated .After doing experiments and observations he came to know that diseases are actually caused by some dynamic forces and he named them as miasms.[psora ,syphilis,sycosis] He noticed that to cure a person completely these miasms should be eradicated using a similar dynamic force.This idea lead to antimiasmatic drugs which are drugs having disease producing power similar to miasms.He developed anti miasmatic drugs and experimented on diseased persons and got wonderful cures.

Developement of homoeopathy

The principles of homoeopathy was written in book form and he named it organon of medicine.Lateron he started publishing these works and six editions of organon were published.Right from the beginning of homoeopathy somany doctors of other system started working against homoeopathy.But those who were against homoeopathy lateron came to know the truth behind homoeopathy and started practising the same.Physicians like Dr J T Kent,Dr Hering,Dr Boenonghausen ect followed Dr hahnemann's mission and developed the system.They all started preparing somany other drugs on the basis of guidlines given by Hahnemann.Physicians came to know that by diluting the drug substance in spirit in a systematic way the medicinal power is increasing eventhough the quantity of drug decreases.Since diseases are due to dynamic causes the medicine also should be dynamic.By a process called potentisation same drug in different levels of potencies were made.They found that by increasing the potency the penetrating power of medicine is increased so that it act on a higher level than the usual material form of drugs used in other systems.This unique nature of homoeopathic medicine is the reason for the wonderful cures of even the mental diseases.

General principles

Homoeopathy treats the diseased individual as a whole rather than treating diseased parts or organs.The physical,mental,emotional,social spheres of a person is considered for a permanent cure.This system believes that the diseases are caused due to the derangement of vital force which is an invisible power in every individual.In a healthy state the vital force maintains the equilibrium of mind body and soul .During this man will have normal sensations and functions.When the vital force gets affected there will be external manifestations in the form of signs and symptoms.The imbalance in the body functions makes a shelter for forign organisms(bacteria,viruses,fungi,protozoa ect) and allow them to proliferate &produce so called diseases.Homoeopathy believes thet the real desease comes before the bacteria & viruses,hence the root cause of the disease has to be treated for a permenent cure.The antibacterial and antiviral agents only remove the secondary causes mentioned above.

Diseases are produced by noxious morbific agents called Miasms which are dynamic influences which affect the vital force.There are mainly three miasms PSORA ,SYPHILIS&SYCOSIS. These three causes are accepted by other schools of medicine but called by different names. Psora causes functional disturbances, syphilis causes structural changes in the form of destructions and sycosis causes changes in the form of overgrowth.These three miasms can act individually or in combined form to produce different disease conditions.

Preperation of medicine in homoeopathy

In homoeopathy medicines are prepared from different sources like minerals, plants, animals, toxins, diseased parts ect. Medicines are prepared from these substances by a special process called potentisation.Here the soluble  substances are potentised by diluting(mixing with spirit with a downward stroke) with spirit and insoluble substances by grinding(trituration) with sugar of milk.The crude drug substance is first mixed with a calculated quantity of spirit and water and kept for few days .From this mixture extract is taken and is called mother tincture(denoted as Q).From this mother tincture dilutions are prepared by potentisation.Potentisation is a mathematical process by which the quantity of original drug substance reduces but medicinal power increases. Depending upon the ratio of quantity of drug substance and vehicle(spirit or sugar of milk)there are different scales for this process.Each scale has got different potencies which indicate power of medicine.Example in decimal scale the drug substance vehicle ratio is1/10 and the availables potencies are 3x,6x.12x ect.In centismal scale the ratio is 1/100 and the available potencies are 30c,200c ect,in LM potency the ratio is 1/50000 and the available potencies are 0/1,0/2,0/3 ect.Potency is written after the name of every medicine

Same medicine is available in different potencies. Suitable potency is selected according to so many facters like severity,depth of disease,condition of the patient ,nature of disease ,type of symptoms,age of patient and ect.

Subjects studied in homoeopathy:-

History of medicine

History & developement of homoeopathy

Pioneers of homoeopathy

Organon of medicine

Homoeopathic philosophy

Materia medica

Homoeopathic pharmacy & pharmacognosy

Homoeopathic repertory

Homoeopathic case taking

Homoeopathic therapeutics

General medical subjects:

( Anatomy,physiology,pathology,microbiology,parasitology,toxicology,forensic medicine,social &  preventive medicine,surgery ,ENT ,gynaecology & obstetrics, opthalmology, dentistry, orthopedics, surgery,general medicine,pediatrics,dermatology ,psychiatry and ect)

Homoeopathic case taking and prescription.

Cure by a homoeopathic medicine is rapid ,gentle and permenent if correct remedy in suitable dose is given. . Just giving one drug for one disease (specific drugs)may not give good result.To come to a correct remedial diagnosis we should have the symptomatology of the person .It is the total symptoms of a person which includes mental generals,physical generals,particular symptoms ect.

All signs and symptoms (mental&physical)of the person is taken in detail.Knowledge about past illness,family history of diseases,food & bowel habits,notable causes,relation to climatic changes and constitution ect are noted down in a systematic order.

Mental symptoms: 

Example: fear,anxiety,depression,anger,jealousy and ect....

Physical symptoms:

Example: Body makeup, appetite, thirst, desires, aversions, bowels, urination, sleep, taste, nature of smell, discharges any abnormal sensations like pain, burning, climatic changes, thermal relations, and etc...

Peculiar uncommon symptoms:

This is the speciality of homoeopathic system of medicine.For the selection of a suitable remedy these symptoms are very important.common symptoms which are seen almost in all patients are least important.  This is the reason for giving different medicines to different individuals suffering from same disease.Example: Five people suffering from typhoid may get five different remedies because of changes of individual symptoms.

Particular/local signs&symptoms:

This include signs &symptoms related to body parts &organs.

Example: Part affected,any swelling,discolouration ect.   
Systemic examination:-

Different systems are examined in a systematic order.(Respiratory system ,digestive system,nervous system,cardio vascular system and ect....)                                                                                                                                                                        Vital signs

Pulse,blood pressure,temperature,respiratory rate ect are checked here.

General physical examination:

Here body parts are examined from head to foot to findout any changes.

provisional disease diagnosis;  Here probable diseases are diagnosed. In homoeopathy disease diagnosis is not that much important for the selection of a  remedy,but needed for general management and to know the prognosis.

Investigations : This includes lab investigations and other methods to find out any other major illnesses.
Final disease diagnosis:

After doing all investigations the disease is diagnosed.

Remedial diagnosis:

This is the most importnant part as far as homoeopathy is concerned. For this the selected symptoms are arranged in a systematic order on the basis of importance. Symptoms are analysed to find out the importance of each symptom for the selection of a remedy.Remedies are selected on the basis of similarity.

Suitable remedies are diagnosed by a process called repertorisation. Here books called repertories are used. Repertory is the index of symptoms of materia medica(books which  contain the symptoms of drugs).Nowadays computer softwares are used for repertorisalion.By this process we will get the remedies covering  maximum important symptom of the patient.

Amoung this group of remedies  the most suitable remedy is selected by referring various books and considering the life space investigation of the patient..The selected medicine is given in suitable potency & dose.


The root cause of disease is miasms which should be eradicated using suitable anti miasmatic drugs.Every drug can eradicate the miasm if there is symptom similarity.There are anti psoric drugs,anti syphilitic drugs and anti sycotic drugs.After diagnosing the miasm suitable anti miasmatic drug has to be given to complete the cure.