Epileptic attacks – Causticum

Boy, age 14; epileptic attacks for three years. First attack followed fright caused by other boys’ make believe to hang him. Attacks increasing in frequency until at this time they occur every two weeks.

The following symptoms were given: Attacks begin by running round in circle, the falls down unconscious. Attacks are more frequent in cold dry weather and during new moon. Involuntary urination during the attack. Boy complains of always being cold; wants to keep warm both summer and winter. He is very touchy; everything makes him cry; seems depressed all the time. Appetite either ravenous or wanting. Aversion to all kinds of sweets, of which he was previously very fond.

Repertory Analysis. – Under complaint caused by fright we find thirty-six remedies. Of these the following twenty-one have the symptoms in the first and second grade: Acon. , Apis , Arg. n. , Art. v., Aur. , Bell. , Caust. , Coff. , Cupr., Gels. , Glon. , Hyos. , Ign. , Lach. , Lyc. , Nat. m. , Nux v. , Op. , Plat. , Puls. , Rhus t.

Sadness and depressed. – Acon. , Arg. n. , Aur. , Bell. , Caust. , Gels. , Ign. , Lach. , Nat. m. , Plat. , Puls.

Worse cold dry weather. – Acon. , Caust.

Aversion to sweets. – Causticum .

We have arrived at the solution of the case by four steps and have used all general symptoms. Now you may ask, why did we start with the rubric complaints caused by fright? First: this is a general symptom and we are working from the generals to particulars. Second: This condition was caused in this boy by fright. This mental shock was so profound that it caused the whole condition of this patient to be changed. It not only produced the epileptic seizure, but affected his desires as well. One of the remedies found under this rubric will be the one which will cover the totality of the case.

The second symptom we will take is another general – sadness and depression. We take this rubric from the fact that it is a mental condition produced by a derangement of the patient’s most internal condition, the mind. Now if we hope to cure this case we must have a remedy which has produced this symptom in the provers, so among our first twenty-one we find eleven with this symptom in the first and second grade.

Another general condition is the modality that attacks are worse in cold dry weather. Among the eleven remedies found in the first two rubrics we find only two which are worse in cold dry weather.

In order to decide which of these two will cover our case we will take the general aversion to sweets. Here we find that Causticum must be the mathematically correct remedy, and turning to our materia medica we find that the pathogenesis of Causticum not only contains the rubrics we have used in our analysis, but the remaining symptoms of our case as well.

Therefore, Causticum is the remedy we will give. Our records show that two doses of this remedy were administered with the following results: The attacks lessened during the first month to one; the second attack, a very slight one, did not follow for seven weeks, and now, after an interval of a year and a half, there has been no sign of a return, so we may safely say the boy is cured.

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