EDITORIAL

Robert H Farley

THE PROVINGS OF SEX STEROID HORMONES.

 

Since sex steroid hormones are widely prescribed nowadays, have become almost commonplace in the treatment of all kinds of disturbances, mostly during the menopause, male and female, and particularly intensively in the palliative treatment of advanced cancer of the breast, the physician should be aware of the toxic manifestations of these products. Cancer research has done a great deal of work along that line and this material has been extracted from recent literature.

I. ANDROGENS.

Hoarseness, most common symptom, gradually coming to a masculine voice with persistent huskiness, sore throat and constriction of larynx. These symptoms are similar to those arising in boys at puberty.

Hirsutism, quite frequent, more marked in brunettes and of a masculine distribution. As a rule this induced hypertrichosis disappears gradually if the remedy is discontinued.

Alopecia, mostly on the scalp (vertex and temples), the hair has a tendency to turn gray and to grow more profusely elsewhere.

Acne is a frequent disturbing complication, on the face, back and chest with increased oiliness and coarseness of the skin. The complexion of these areas becomes more ruddy. The nails soften, become more flexible and less brittle.

Irrespective of the course of the disease for which androgens are prescribed, there is a definite and welcome euphoria, an increase in weight, sometimes excessive, which disappears if the medication is stopped.

The analgesia from pain is sometimes spectacular and its combination with euphoria makes the evaluation of the treatment very difficult to interpret.

Other side effects are headaches, drowsiness, nausea and vomiting occurring early from the medication.

II. ESTROGENS.

In menstruating women, amenorrhea is produced in almost every case as contrasted with post-menopause women who frequently have uterine bleedings, from spotting to regular menstrual flow and even to menorrhagia.

Pollakiuria, with or without incontinence, is a very distressing symptom affecting mostly old multiparae.

Breast alterations are most disturbing in premenopausal women: tingling, tenderness and engorgement. More universal is the marked pigmentation of nipples and areolas, also of the axilla and, to a less extent, the labiae, the umbilicus and the linea alba.

All too frequent early effects are headaches and Dizziness probably due to cerebral edema drowsiness, jumpiness, anxiety, depression and weakness. A bright red glossy tongue occurs sometimes, similar to the B complex deficiency.

III. SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS COMMON TO BOTH.

ANDROGENS AND ESTROGENS.

One of the most characteristic is sodium retention with corresponding peripheral edema, more pronounced in elderly women and leading to thrombophlebitis, cardiac failure and, on rare occasions, death.

Hypercalcemia is a serious complication which is spontaneous in a small percentage of advanced breast cancer cases with metastasis in the bones. The clinical picture includes anorexia, nausea, vomiting, weakness, drowsiness, stupor, depression and even coma. Estrogen prescribed for men for prostatic cancer does not produce hypercalcemia.

Amenorrhea is another effect in menstruating women.

Most of the above described symptoms are reversible and disappear when the medication is discontinued. They are often unrecognized by the practitioner who has to treat cases who often wander from one doctor to another, or advanced cancer cases, where the symptoms arising during treatment are most of the time attributed to the disease and not to the drugs prescribed. The homoeopathic remedy, to be successful, must be prescribed on the totality of the symptoms of natural disease (Organon, p. 76). Many failures are due to the confusion between natural and toxic symptoms produced by extraneous medication.

SARAT CHANDRA GHOSE, M.D., M.R.S.L. (London).

News has been received of the honor paid Sarat Chandra Ghose, M.D., M.R.S.L. (London), of 31-B Kabir Road, Calcutta, India, on the occasion of his 84th birthday when large numbers of Dr. Ghose’s relatives, friends, professional colleagues and admirers gathered on July 4, 1953, to do him homage. Prominent among the guests were Dr. Profulla Chandra, proprietor of the Hahnemann Publishing Company, S.N. Gosh, M.A., H.M.B., and B.K. Sarkar, M.B.

The day began when Dr. Ghose, wearing new clothes and profusely garlanded, sat down to breakfast surrounded by his sons and daughters, their wives, husbands, and children, where all prayed that the good doctor might enjoy a long life free from physical infirmity.

In the evening, the many friends and relatives of Dr. Ghose gathered at his home to honor him with appropriate verses, songs and music. At the conclusion of the celebration, Dr. Ghose addressed his well-wishers as follows:

“[To] ye, my sons, daughters, sons-in-law, and all other friends and relations, I hereby convey my heartfelt thanks of organizing this ceremony, [though] much against my inclination, at a time when my life’s taper is burning to its close and may be extinguished any moment. I always dislike self-adulation; but you have come forward to perform a most sacred duty on your part. It is true that I received numerous high honors from famous medical societies of the world, but it is equally true that this sort of honour I never received before. I therefore thank you from the bottom of my heart and pray to God for your health, happiness and prosperity in life”.

SARAT Chandra Ghose, M.D., M.R.S.L,. (London) is an honorary member of the International Hahnemannian Association and is well-known to readers of The Recorder for his many labors on behalf of Homoeopathy. The Recorder and its editorial staff are happy to be counted among Dr. Ghose’s friends and admirers, adding our congratulations to those already received.

A. D. S.

MEETINGS.

Note should be made of the following future meetings of homoeopathic organizations. It is unfortunate that information concerning the meeting of the British Homoeopathic Congress reached The Recorder too late for publication in either the July or August issues.

The Congress meets in London, September 3-5, 1953, opening with Dr. Alva Benjamin’s presidential address, “Medicine in the two Elizabethan Eras the Role of Homoeopathy in the Second,” on Thursday afternoon, at the Royal London Homoeopathic Hospital. Friday, September 4, will be given over to scientific sessions in both morning and afternoon, while on Saturday, September 5, an excursion to Cambridge is planned for members of the Congress. By special request a post-graduate course in case taking will be held at the Royal London Homoeopathic Hospital from August 31 to September 3.

The Annual Meeting of the Pennsylvania State Homoeopathic Medical Society, September 15-17, 1953, will convene at Galen Hall in Wernersville, Pennsylvania. The full program for this meeting will appear in the Journal of the American Institute of Homoeopathy for August.

The joint meeting of the Southern Homoeopathic Medical Society and the Pan American Homoeopathic Medical Congress is set for October 25-27, 1953, at New Orleans, Louisiana. Head-quarters will be the Jung Hotel, one of New Orleans’ best. The program for this convention is not, at this writing, available to The Recorder, but all indications point to an outstanding meeting.

Preparations for the 110th Anniversary Convention of the American Institute of Homoeopathy are already in the making under the direction of President Grimmer. The Grand Hotel, Mackinac Island, Michigan, has been chosen as convention headquarters, from July 18-22. As customary, the International Hahnemannian Association will meet concurrently with the Institute.

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, has been chosen as the local for a Homoeopathic World Congress planned for October 10-12, 1954. Delegations from homoeopathic organizations all over the world are expected. For the information of those who plan to attend from the United States, the cost of the voyage from Miami to Rio de Janeiro and return, including stay in Brazil, tours, etc. will be about dollar 600 (590) per person.

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