I want to take up the study of Tuberculinum. The preparation which I use is a little different from that which is generally found in the market. This preparation I procured through a Professor of Veterinary Surgery.
In Pennsylvania there came a time when a handsome herd of cattle had to be slaughtered because of tuberculosis. Through the Veterinary Surgeon of the Pennsylvania University I secured some of the tubercular glands from these slaughtered cattle.
I selected from these the most likely specimen. This was potentized by Boericke & Tafel as far as the 6th, and has since been prepared on the Skinner machine, the 30th, 200th, 100th and the higher potencies. This preparation I have been using for fifteen years. Many of my friends have been using it, as they have procured it from me.
From observing the effects of this preparation I have been gathering these notes in my inter-leaved Hering’s Guiding Symptoms, and they now guide me in the use of Tuberculinum. I do not use Tuberc. merely because it is a nosode, or with the idea that generally prevails of using nosodes; that is a product of the disease for the disease, and the results of the disease. This I fear is too much the prevailing thought in using nosodes. In certain places it prevails and is taught that anything that relates to syphilis must be treated with Syphilinum; that anything relating to gonorrhoea must be treated with Medorrhinum, anything psoric must be treated with Psorinum, and anything that relates to tuberculosis must be treated with Tuberculinum. That will go out of use some day; it is mere isopathy, and it is an unsound doctrine. It is not the better idea of Homceopathy. It is not based upon sound principles. It belongs to a hysterical Homoeopathy that prevails in this century. Yet much good has come out of it.
It is hoped that provings may be made so that we may be able to prescribe Tuberc. on the symptoms of Tuberc. just as we would use any drug. It is deep acting, constitutionally deep, because it is a product of disease from a very deep-seated constitutional condition, like Silica and Sulphur. It goes deep into the life; it is antipsoric; it is long acting, and it affects constitutions more deeply than most remedies; and when our deepest remedies act only a few weeks, and they have to be changed, this remedy comes in as one of the remedies, when the symptoms agree, and brings a better state of reaction, so that remedies hold longer. It may well be considered a species of Psorinum.
One of the most prominent uses of this remedy is in intermittent fever. Some of our most stubborn cases of intermittent fever will relapse and continue relapsing, even when such remedies as Silica Calcarea and the deeper-acting remedies have been indicated, have acted well, have broken the fever, and in a few weeks, from exposure to cold, from sitting in a draft, from becoming fatigued, from mental exertion, from over-eating and from disordering the stomach this ague has returned. Any of these circumstances will bring back these stubborn cases of intermittent fever when Tuberc. is needed. When a patient is travelling toward phthisis and he is exposed and intermittent comes out. He is of a feeble constitution and his complaints have a tendency to relapse, and remedies well selected do not hold long, though they act well at first, they must soon be changed, changing symptoms.
It is not an indication for Tuberc. when the well selected remedy fails to act. Well selected is a relative expression and involves too much of human opinion. It may be thought to be well selected when it is not related to the case. When the well selected remedy has acted and the constitution shows a tendency to break down, and the well selected remedy does not hold, because of vital weakness and because of deep-seated tendencies; then it is that this remedy sometimes fits in. Such a case is often tuberculous in inclination, even though no evidence is present of a pathological character.
Burnett dropped an idea, that has been confirmed many times. Patients who have inherited phthisis, patients whose parents have died of phthisis are often of feeble vitality. They do not throw off their inherited tendencies. They are always tired. They take on sicknesses easily. They become anaemic; nervous; waxy or pale. These conditions are sometimes met, when the finer symptoms agree, although Burnett evidently used this medicine in a sort of routine way for this kind of constitution, which he called “Consumptiveness.” Persons who had inherited phthisis, who were debilitated and anaemic.
It seems from looking over the record of many cures that this remedy has been given many times for just that state on a paucity of symptoms, and if the records can be believed it has many times balanced up the constitution in that anaemic state, where the inheritance has beets. It is not the best indication for Tuberc., but where the symptoms agree in addition to that inheritance, then you may have indications for the remedy.
If Tuberculinum bovinum be given in 10m., 50m., cm., and mm. potencies, two doses of each potency at long intervals, all children and Young people who have inherited tuberculosis may be immmuned from their inheritance and their resiliency will be restored. It cures most cases of adenoids and tuberculous glands of the neck. The notes that have guided me to its use I will attempt to explain. The mental symptoms that I have seen give way while the patient was under treatment, and the mental symptoms that I have seen crop cut under the provings, and the mental symptoms that I have so often seen associated when the patient is poisoned by the tubercular toxines are such as belong to many complaints and are cured by Tuberc. Hopelessness in many complaints. Aversion to mental work. Anxiety evening, until midnight. Anxiety during fever. Loquacity during fever. Weary of life. Cosmopolitan. Tormenting, persistent thoughts during the night. Thoughts intrude and crowd upon each other during the night. These I will say are the common mental features, and have often yielded when the remedy has been prescribed. Anyone who has inherited phthisis, anyone who has been in a state of debility, who has had intermittent fever with continual relapses, and these mental symptoms are present, you may think of Tuberc. Loquacity during fever is a common feature in hectic fever when the patient is decidedly affected by the toxines of tuberculosis. A person gradually running down, never finding the right remedy, or relief only momentarily; has a constant desire to change, and travel, and go somewhere, and do something different, or to find a new doctor. The desire to travel, that cosmopolitan condition of the mind belongs so strongly to the one who needs Tuberc. It comes out so often in clinical experience, is found so often in the Calcareas, and especially in Calc. phos., always wanting to go somewhere. Such is the condition of those about to go into insanity, about to go into some lingering disease. Persons on the border-land of insanity. It is true that phthisis and insanity are convertible conditions, the one falls into the other. Many cases that are treated and cured, and phthisis of the lungs has just been turned aside, finally become insane. Persons who have been cured of insanity go into phthisis and die, showing the deep-seated character of their nature. The intellectual symptoms and the lung symptoms are interchangeable.
Tuberculinum cures the most violent and the most chronic periodical sick headaches, periodical nervous headaches. Coming every week; every two weeks; and the irregular periodicity coming under certain conditions, in damp weather, after overwork, from mental excitement, from overeating, disordered stomach, Tuberc. breaks up the tendency o this chronic periodical headache when the symptoms agree.
It has been observed in the hands of good prescribers that when chronic constitutional headaches have been broken up sometimes the patient has a tendency to lose flesh and become feeble. An entire transformation scene takes place; a cough sets in; the headache has been removed, but the patient is feeble. Wherever that takes place Tuberc. is a most useful remedy. A new manifestation comes; a new organ is affected.
Sore bruised feeling all over the body. Aching of the bones. Sore bruised condition of the eyeballs, sensitive to touch, and on turning the eye sideways. Persons who have long felt the weakness of tuberculosis, tubercular conditions, and are subject to cold sweat en the head. This was brought out in the provings of Calcarca, and those about to go into phthisis have many times been cured by Calcarca. The relationship between Tuberc. and Calc. is very close. They are interchangeable; that is, the one may be indicated for a while, and then the other. They are both deep-acting remedies, also Silica is closely related to Tuberc., on the same plane of action, going deep into the life in a similar way; Calcarca, Tuberc. and Silica, and the Silicates.
In the Guiding Symptoms is a record, “Pain in the head, as if the head had a tight hoop of iron around it;” an iron band. Headache, with frequent sharp cutting pains. Headache, worse from motion. In the Guiding Symptoms, “A sullen, taciturn, irritable” condition of mind. “Screams in his sleep. Is very restless at night. Sister died of tubercular meningitis.” That symptom was given by Burnett. It has cured hydrocephalus. Many years ago Doctor Biegler cured a case of tubercular meningitis with Tuberc. In many instances it has cured tubercular meningitis and tubercular diseases of the brain in the early stages.
The face becomes red, even to purple, during the chill, and during the heat. Aversion to all food. Such aversion to meat that it becomes impossible to cat it. Thirst during the chill and heat, for large quantities of cold water. It has cured tubercular meningitis with effusion, where the head was greatly enlarged. Craving for cold milk. Emptiness in the abdomen, with faint feeling. Anxiety in the abdomen and stomach, much like the Sulphur sensation described. An all-gone, hungry feeling, that drives him to eat. This has been cured by Tuberc. after Sulphur had failed.
All know what a marked feature emaciation is in persons who are going into phthisis. The emaciation often begins before there is any sign of phthisis, gradually Iosing flesh. A gradually growing weakness, a gradually increasing fatigue. This is a prominent place for Tuberc.–if the symptoms agree. Always Iet that stand out boldly, IF THE SYMPTOMS AGREE, and WHEN THE SYMPTOMS AGREE. Of course it will be said that Tuberc. has cured when there are few symptoms; this is granted, but should not be lauded as a clinical practices.
It is a common feature of tubercular affections of the brain and of the meninges to suffer from constipation. Stool large and hard; or, constipation alternating with diarrhoea. It is a well-Down clinical fact. Constipation is a strong feature of Tuberc. “Constipation, stool large and hard; then diarrhoea. Itching of the anus. Sudden diarrhoea before breakfast, with nausea. Inguinal glands indurated and visible. Excessive sweat in chronic diarrhoea.” That symptom was brought out by. Burnett. It was merely a clinical symptom. Burnett dwells on this phase of it; “Tabes Mesenterica.” “Swelling on left side, also on right; complains of a stitch in side after running; languid and indisposed to talk. Nervous and irritable. Talks in his sleep; grinds his teeth. Appetite poor. Hands blue. Indurated and palpable glands everywhere. A drum belly. Spleen region bulging out.” That was one of Burnett’s clinical cases. That was cured by Burnett’s Bacillinum. In most instances, I am informed, he used the Bacillinum 200th.
It is a common feature of Sulphur to be driven out of bed in the morning by a diarrhoea. It is a very common feature in cases of phthisis, and patients going into phthisis. In advanced stages of phthisis, driven out of bed with a diarrhoea; or, diarrhoea worse in the morning than at any other time in the twenty-four hours. This is a common feature of phthisis that Tuberc. has cured, and it has been verified many times, although it is a clinical symptom. General relaxation. Weakness and hanging down of the genitals. Relaxed scrotum.
Menses too early, too profuse, long lasting. Amenorrhoea. Dysmnenorrhoea. Cough before, and during chill. Suffocation; worse in a warm room. Tubercular deposits in apices of lungs (left). The uterus sags down and is heavy. At the menstrual period, a relaxation, as if the inner parts would come out.
Dry hacking cough before the evening chill (Rhus t.), and the hacking cough lasts sometimes during the chill, and sometimes during the fever, but he knows the chill is coming by the cough. The patient has been cured perhaps a number of times by remedies. Intermittent fever has been cured a number of times by remedies well selected. The fever goes away promptly under the action of the remedy; but from slight exposure, as was mentioned, it comes back again. Now, at the end of three, four or five weeks, often two or three, he says, “I know my old chills are coming back again, because of the cough I have.” The previous remedies have not been successful. They are not deep enough acting, they are not long enough acting. When the homoeopathic remedy is really and truly able to cure the diseased condition it will hold that case, so that when the symptoms come back will be indicated, and only a changed potency again the same remedy perhaps will be necessary. The same remedy is sled for; bet it is an indication for Tuberc. when at every coming back of the case it calls for a new remedy. Calcarca breaks up the case once, and the next time it comes back it calls for something else, and the next time for something else, and it keeps turning around. Perhaps a number of times it calls for the same remedies again. Changing about. That very changing and unsatisfied symptom image is a strong indication for this medicine.
Suffocation in a warm room. Can find easy breathing only when riding in the cold wind. When phthisical patients find no comfort except riding in the cold wind, which is a rare symptom, but has been noticed. This was a symptom specially marked in the lamented Gregg, of Buffalo. He would ride out in the cold winds by the lake for hours. Arg. nit. many times relieved that, but it is a strong symptom of Tuberc. He finally died of tuberculosis.
Desire for deep breathing. Longs for the open air. Wants the doors and windows open. Sits in the room covered with a cold sweat, but wants the air, wants fresh air. When covered with cold sweat he cannot have the wind blowing on him because he takes cold, he is sensitive to it, but he wants the fresh air, he wants the open air. Especially when the tubercular deposits begin in the apex of the left lung, which is the indication that has been verified by quite a number of observers.
“Hard, dry cough. Hard, dry, shaking cough,” were symptoms noticed by Boardman, regardless of phthisis. The expectoration is thick, yellow, often yellowish-green in catarrhal conditions. Hacking cough in young girls, where there is a suppression of the menstrual flow, of the first menses. They come on once or twice or three times, and the patient is yellow, is puny, is tired, has a hacking cough, and a suspicious chest. If the tubercular deposits have not gone too far, Tuberc. may arrest the progress of the disease. Tuberc. often gives immunity if taken before the tuberculosis begins in those who have inherited it. It immunes the constitution.
Another marked feature recorded by Burnett was ringworms. Burnett was of the opinion that ringworms commonly formed upon those who had inherited phthisis. He thought it was a. sign of approaching phthisis, that it was a very common feature of those who have inherited phthisis; and he used the Bacillinum 200th. He used it somewhat as a routine remedy on every child with ringworm. Patients who suffer from weakness in the evening. Rapid pulse in the evening. Every evening for years he has noticed the pulse has been rapid. Palpitation after the evening meal.
Jerking of the muscles on going to sleep, and during sleep. Rheumatic pain in the right elbow. Sore bruised condition of the bones and periosteum. Aching, drawing pains in the limbs during rest, better by walking. A strong feature of this remedy is that its pains and aches are better by motion. I have seen this aching distress in the limbs many times where Rhus has acted only temporarily or has failed; where Rhus seemed to be the remedy, but was not deep enough to hold its action. Where Rhus was superficially indicated, or the deep action of the disturbance, the deep inheritance, the tired constitution, the chronic nature of the case prevents the action of Rhus, and Tuberc. cures these cases. Especially in girls that are bookkeepers, and shopkeepers, who have inherited phthisical constitutions, who have aches and pains during damp weather, in rainy weather, during a storm, when the weather changes, when the weather becomes cold; then it is that Tuberc. cures after such remedies as Rhus have failed; these patients are better by motion, better by walking; worse during rest. While sitting the pains become so severe that he is driven to travel, driven to walk. Aching, drawing pains in limbs during rest, better walking. Coldness of left foot and leg, evening in bed. Stitching pains in limbs during rest. Wandering . pains in limbs, in joints. Pains all over the body, but mostly in lower limbs. Aching, drawing, tearing, as if in bones, and nerves, during rest; better walking. Pains in bones of lower limbs. Stiffness on beginning to move. Sore bruised joints. Pains all ameliorated by heat. Drawing pains in thighs. Stitching pains in limbs. Restless. Stiffness of lower limbs, evening. Physical exertion aggravates.
Complaints worse standing; must move. This is as marked in this remedy as in Sulphur. Intermittent fever, with drawing in limbs during rest. Chill 7 P. M. Chilliness, evening; better in bed. Chill 5 P. M., with thirst. Cough before chill, during chill, and vomiting during fever. Wants to be covered during all stages. Extreme heat, with chilliness. Relapsing intermittents. Drawing in the limbs in the evening before the chill, and during the chill. He knows the chill is coming on because of the drawing in the limbs. Chill at 11 o’clock at night. Must be covered up during all stages, the chill, the fever and the sweat. The chilliness extends into the fever and into the sweat if there is any uncovering.
Aching in the bones of the head, with soreness of the periosteum and these are better by traveling about, Iike Rhus. Better by motion; worse keeping still. Perspiration from mental exertion. Perspiration stains the linen yellow. Heat and perspiration during sleep. We know what a common feature it is in phthisis to have night sweats.
Formication in the skin. This remedy has cured tubercular eruptions of the skin. This remedy has cured red purplish eruptions that are nodular in character; the patient wants to sit all the time by the fire, itching in cold air, better by going to the fire, worse from scratching. Sensitive to every change of the weather, especially to cold, and to clamp weather, and sometimes to warm damp weather, and to rainy weather. Always worse before a storm. Can feel every electric change in the weather. Becoming cold brings on all the symptoms, pains, aches, distresses and sufferings. A large list of symptoms of patients that have been cured in all their varying conditions may be found by looking up the Guiding Symptoms. Periodicity, then, is a strong feature of this remedy, and sensitive to weather changes. Fainting fits. Weakness after a short walk. It has cured constitutional headaches, periodical headaches, that existed forty-five years. It cures even old people of these periodical complaints.
The pains will sometimes travel. Stitching, pinching, cramping, wandering; and always worse from cold, and from cold damp weather.
Written by James Tyler Kent (1849–1916) and published first in his book "Materia Medica" (1905) James Tyler Kent was an American physician best remembered as a forefather of modern homeopathy.