The Flu: How Homeopathy Can Help
Filed under Clinical Cases
Can homeopathy successfully treat flu? Yes, provided the patient is seen as an individual with unique symptoms, in addition to the common, well-known symptoms of the flu. In all flu patients the common symptoms are: fever, body aches and exhaustion. The homeopath notes the common symptoms and then begins to search for unusual symptoms because it is the unusual symptoms that lead to the correct homeopathic medicine.
Conventional medicine has no treatment, per se, for the flu other than bed rest, NSAID’s (non-steroidal antinflammatory drugs) and plenty of fluids, but it does offer vaccines to protect against it. Some years the seasonal flu vaccine is more effective, other years, less effective. Every flu vaccine must be prepared from the specific virus or viruses it is designed to protect against. Some years the people from the CDC (Center for Disease Control) make better selections (guesses) as to which flu strain will become prevalent, some years their selections are less accurate.
The homeopathic approach is different. When a person comes down with an acute viral illness, whatever the name may be, the homeopath takes a careful history interviewing the patient and the caregiver, if there is one present. Also, he examines the patient.
Following are two cases that came my way in the fall of 2009.
A 47 year old woman came in with a fever, exhaustion, and very peculiar pains.
The illness started the day before when she noticed she was unusually tired. That morning she got up tired, and with her nose so congested she had to breathe through her mouth. Later in the morning her temperature went to 101.3ºF.
Normally, with influenza (my working diagnosis) the whole body aches reminiscent of the day after unusually hard muscular exertion. Her pains were nothing like that. “I feel like I am being stuck with pins,” she said. “Everywhere.” Her entire skin felt unpleasantly sensitive.
Normally talkative and spritely, she seemed dull and listless. Her face and hands were hot to the touch. She said she felt cold despite the fever.
She brought her thumb and forefinger together at the bridge of the nose and said, “I have a headache here.” Later, she said there was a mild pulsation in the temples.
She said it was harder to breathe lying down.
Her thirst was increased. She wanted hot drinks: tea with lemon and honey.
Mid-afternoon she felt worse than other times.
Very sensitive to noise, light, and smells.
In homeopathy, we look not to the common symptoms of the flu, i.e., fever and chills, aches and pains and exhaustion, but to what is strange. Here, the sensation of being stuck by pins was quite unusual, even rare. Having overly sensitive skin was also not typical of most flu’s.
Because she was dull and listless, it was important not to look for a homeopathic medicine that was restless and alert.
The fact she chose to put lemon in her hot tea caught my attention.
I needed a medicine that had, in its known symptomatology:
- Sticking pains in the skin.
- Sensitive skin.
- Desire for lemons.
- Mid-afternoon aggravation.
- Dull and thirsty.
That medicine was Belladonna given to her around 6 p.m.
The following day, December 1st she called to say she was much, much better. Belladonna acted within hours.
A teenage boy in Connecticut was diagnosed with Swine Flu, otherwise known as H1N1, and prescribed Tamiflu which he had not begun. (He was not tested for H1N1 but it was rampant in his school and he was presumed to have it.) His mother, my patient, called me and related the following symptoms:
That morning he said his chest was hurting. He went to school and felt worse and returned home. His back began to hurt. He became dizzy and developed a shaking chill. Temperature 103ºF.
“He has been vomiting all afternoon,” his mother said.
His ears were ringing.
The body was aching everywhere and felt heavy.
Eyelids not heavy.
He was not restless.
Asked about thirst, his mother said, “He asks for water, takes a sip, then vomits it.”
“What is he doing?” I asked.
“Nothing. He will text his girlfriend, but mostly he seems indifferent, no interest in anything.” Not complaining.
When healthy, he was very sports-minded. He lifted weights daily, and played basketball.
This boy needed a medicine that included these symptoms:
- Dullness & Chilliness with little Thirst.
- Not complaining
The medicine that best covered these symptoms was Sepia which was overnighted to him.
1Dec09 Follow up by telephone.
He received the medicine at 3 p.m. It was now 7 p.m. Eastern Time.
He spent all morning on the couch. Had a bowl of soup at lunch.
Since taking the medicine his energy had increased. He was now playing games on X-Box.
Only his chest and throat hurt.
Vomiting stopped during the night.
No chill. No fever though he had had a slight fever in the morning.
Lower back hurts as do biceps, hands, fingers and lower extremities.
Last night at 2 a.m. his breathing sounded, “hollow,” according to his mother, who made him get out of bed and walk. He found it difficult, complaining of pain in the right upper chest. The medicine was repeated. By 6:30 a.m. his breathing had improved. The medicine was given a third time.
He got up at 9:30 a.m. feeling hungry and with less pain in the right chest. No fever. Eyes, arms, and legs were without pain.
He said he wanted to play basketball and did so the next day.
It appeared that Sepia acted, but it could be argued he would have got over the flu without any treatment within two days. A number of people in his area, however, had been extremely sick with the same flu.
The two cases cited above, as well as the one reported earlier this year (see: Swine Flu Remedies–Can Homeopathy Cure Swine Flu?), each required a different homeopathic medicine. That is because we homeopaths do not treat categories of disease, i.e., influenza, but rather we treat the individual’s precise symptoms of that influenza. so there is no “one-size-fits-all” medicine for the flu, but there definitively is an effective homeopathic medicine for a given individual with symptoms of the flu.