Homeopathic Doctor in Houston Texas

A Recurring Kidney Infection Cured With Bryonia

Filed under Clinical Cases

She came in for chronic, recurring left flank pain. Flank pain refers to pain in one side of the body between the upper abdomen and the back. It is generally a sign of kidney infection and so it was with Maria who had her first kidney infection when she was four years old. She was now nearly 31. Hospitalized two years ago in April, 2001, with chills, fever and perspiration, she was diagnosed with a kidney infection and placed on IV antibiotics for three days.

In September, 2002, a similar pain appeared again in the left flank and, unfortunately, it was continuing to appear, disappear and reappear. She related how the pain would come for four or five days and then disappear for eight to twelve days.

We like to think, and doctors would have us believe, that when we have an infection, we take the prescribed antibiotic and that’s that. Often that is the end of it but not always. Sometimes the infection goes underground and smolders. The question is: what to do about it? Your doctor will prescribe another antibiotic, and then another, and another. This is the stage where patients become desperate and look for alternatives.

In homeopathy we approach the problem a bit differently. We have four criteria we apply:

  1. The location of the pain and whether or not it extends in some direction.

  2. The sensation of the pain.

  3. The modalities of the pain–anything that makes it better or worse.

  4. The concomitants or any other condition that accompanies the problem.

Her pain was in the left flank and extended to the left upper abdomen.

She described it as “pressing inwards.”

It was worse from any movement such as walking, turning in bed, etc. and it was better lying on the painful side.

The concomitants were:

* Her urine became quite dark with each episode.

* Her thirst in the past year had increased dramatically to 3 liters a day—two liters of water and one of juice.

* She was perspiring more since 2001 and the sweat was oily.

With an episode she experienced more body heat though there was no fever. Curiously, the body heat came on at bedtime around 10 p.m. and lasted until 1 a.m.

At this point I had quite an array of symptoms none of which were relevant in conventional medicine but which were of key importance in homeopathy.

The fact her pain was much worse from movement is important. Because it was better lying on the painful side I knew that the weight of her body on the left flank immobilized the area making movement less possible—another way of saying “worse from movement.”

Her striking increase in thirst with each episode meant that I would search for a medicine known to have increased thirst. Also, I would take into account the darker than usual urine though that was of lesser importance as it is common in kidney infections. The fact her perspiration increased and turned oily fascinated me. I would try to take that into account also.

So one can see that the kidney infection was having a number of different effects throughout the body—all of which were of little or no importance to the conventional doctor yet of crucial importance to the homeopath.

There was some earlier stress when she and her husband, both dentists, lived in Columbia before moving to the U.S. They worked with her in-laws, also dentists. The in-laws were killed in a motor vehicle accident and they became swamped with work. Shortly afterward they began to receive a specific threat to kidnap their daughter. That proved too much and they left Columbia and moved to Florida. Suddenly, after years of hard work, there was zero work as she had no license in Florida. Her new life, without work, was very hard for her. She exercised three hours a day and worried about “not being useful.”

She described herself as “hyperactive,” “very strict about my values,” “good manners are very important,” and “responsible.”

It was quite possible the stress of receiving a kidnapping threat in Columbia was setting the stage for the later breakdown of her health but there was no way to be sure of that.

I selected Bryonia—a medicine that covered most aspects of her illness. It is very well-known for being much, much worse from any movement, having a very high thirst, dark urine, increased perspiration and, I was able to find in a reference work, that has “perspiration…like oil.”

It is now 2009 and she has had no recurrences of her problem. Very soon after starting Bryonia all her symptoms subsided. At a follow-up she mentioned that she felt “less over responsible and less pressured.”

This case nicely illustrates the many details the homeopath takes into account when he or she approaches a sick patient.