EUGENE UNDERHILL, JR., M.D., Editor.
THERAPY IN SYPHILIS.
The drugs with specific curative effects in syphilis are the compounds of arsenic, bismuth and mercury. Some of the questions relating to their use, on which syphilologists do not all agree at present, are: Which metal to use at any given stage of the disease? What preparations of the metal to select? How much of it to give? By what route? What plan of treatment to follow, whether continuous or interrupted or combined, and so on? And if toxic reactions or resistance to therapy develops, what other course to follow? If no reactions develop when to stop treatment? – Journal A.M.A., June 10, 1939, page 2415.
It appears from the above that the chief difficulties confronting syphilologists at present in the treatment of syphilis may be summarized as follows:.
1. They dont know what to prescribe.
2. They dont know how much of it to give.
3. They dont know how to administer it.
4. They dont know whether the treatment should be “continuous or interrupted or combined”.
5. They dont know what to do “if toxic reactions or resistance to therapy develops”.
6. They dont know when to stop treatment “if no reactions develop”.
Let each physician ask himself what he would do were he convinced of the presence of syphilis in his own constitution. This should be a very solemn and searching inquiry and upon the answer should depend all his subsequent therapeutic endeavors in respect to patients suffering from this disease.
Why should homoeopathists continue to treat their syphilitic cases according to accepted and accredited methods when even the advocates of chemotherapy cannot agree as to how to proceed except by the trial and error method. Some physicians employ homoeopathic remedies as an adjunct to the usual strong armed measures. To whom, may we ask, are such physicians attempting to apologize?.
The universality of the homoeopathic law makes the similar remedy as applicable to syphilitic cases as to any other type of constitutional disorder whether acute or chronic. Homoeopathy is the only form of medicinal treatment that is not only safe and nonsuppressive but actually curative in its effect.
In undertaking the care of a luetic case the dictum “treat the patient and not the disease” is most essential, especially from a homoeopathic standpoint. Just forget that the patient has syphilis and proceed to select the indicated remedy on the same basis as in any other kind of trouble. Pathologic rubrics in the repertories are all right if used properly but they are liable to start one off the wrong foot.
The rubrics Sycosis and Syphilis (Kent, 4th edition, page 1406) are interesting and valuable but they must be kept in their proper place at the end of thee repertory analysis. If a case works out to Aurum, Arsenicum, Mercury or Nitric acid well and good, but if the general and essential symptoms of the next patient are those of Nux vomica or Pulsatilla why worry because neither of these remedies happen to appear under the nosologic rubric Syphilis.
Diseased states are often superimposed one upon another much like the various strata of soil and rock. As long as fusion of the various layers remains relatively incomplete remedy selection may not be particularly difficult.
Food and drug toxemias are complicating factors of tremendous importance and unless removed may combine with one or more of the chronic miasms and, depending upon the degree of fusion, may render a case not only difficult to treat but perhaps impossible to cure.
This brings the question of treatment down to the following essential items:.
1. Discontinuance of all medication.
2. Correction of the diet.
(a) Avoidance of food toxemias.
(b) Avoidance of nutritional deficiencies.
3. Prescription of the indicated remedy.
4. Adequate rest, relaxation and sleep.
5. Conservation of energy and avoidance of depletions.
6. Regulated amounts of exercise and controlled exposure of the body to fresh air and sunlight.
7. Suitable employment well within the limits of the patients strength and endurance.
When all drugs including antacids, laxatives and every conceivable medical substance have been absolutely discontinued a tremendous burden will, in many cases, be lifted from the constitution. Sometimes an upward surge of the vital force will result before any other measures are inaugurated.
When food toxemias are stopped at their source by proper dietary correcting a gradual cleansing of the system will take place. Correction of the diet implies the discontinuance of all processed, devitalized and acid forming foods and the ingestion of liberal quantities of fresh, alkaline foods in their natural, unprocessed form. The individual meals may require simplifying but a wider variety of wholesome foods must be included in the weekly menu to insure against the possibility of deficiency disorders. The human organism feeds upon organic material and the foods ingested must contain the essential elements are built up and compounded by animal and plant processes. Wilting of the body may result from starvation of the tissues in the presence of a surfeit of food.
Medical practitioners too often overlook and therefore fail to emphasize the importance of the many factors which in their totality make up the patients routine or pattern of living. Unless these are suitably balanced the very best results cannot logically be expected. The value of rest, sleep, exercise and outdoor life may not require particular mention as they have been stressed many times, but drains and depletions are often overlooked. Bleeding haemorrhoids of long standing, menorrhagias, excessive seminal losses and other depletions must be discovered and corrected insofar as possible.
Last but not least is the therapeutic value of work. There is no adequate substitute for suitable occupation of both mind and body in some form of constructive effort. The indications along these lines are as individual as the symptomatic indications for the homoeopathic remedy itself.
Venereal diseases are curable in the hands of expert clinicians who understand how to remove the obstacles to recovery and who prescribe for the individual patient and not routinely for a so- called disease entity.