For those of you who have attended my seminars I have often said there are various ways of looking at a case.

  • By looking at the essence. This is the main idea of the case, the theme that runs through all the symptoms.
  • By looking at the totality of the symptoms.
  • By looking at the keynotes. These are the peculiar and unusual symptoms.
  • By looking at the causation, e.g. if a patient tells me that her skin eruption started after her child died or his stomach problems started after losing his job, then this is the CAUSATION.

These causation symptoms can be considered very strongly. They are the starting points to finding the remedy and a remedy must often be given that fits that causation even if it means ignoring other symptoms.

I have an example here of a man who came to see me for his stomach problems. He was also very hard of hearing. Communication was extremely difficult because of his hearing loss and then I asked if he had ever had a bad accident. He told me he had fallen off his tractor 20 years ago, received a concussion, developed hearing problems, and then five years later developed a duodenal ulcer. I did not waste any further time with questions and gave him Arnica. He returned in a month and not only was hearing 80 percent better but his stomach was also much improved.

This is an example of an etiological prescription. It does not matter that it took much longer for the stomach symptoms to develop as a result of the fall as the fall is still the primary causation.

There was another case of a woman who lost her voice when one of her sons died. She lived in a village and had not been able to speak for a number of years. Everyone knew she could not speak. I gave her Ignatia based on the causation of her complaint. If ailments from grief was entered as a causation symptom using the symbol "t # = 3" then Ignatia would be one of the choices to be ruled out. After one dose of Ignatia she was able to speak again much to the astonishment of the villagers!

The point I want to make is, if one had taken all her symptoms and put them into the computer at one time it would be more difficult to come up with the idea of Ignatia.

Another situation that can provide difficulty is when there is no essence to help one find the remedy.

Ideally, the case presents one with a clear essence, totality, confirming keynotes and confirming general and causation symptoms. This "perfect case" is not what we often see before us and for various reasons one or more of these categories is missing. When the essence is missing it must not prejudice you into avoiding all polycrest remedies. In fact it is still just as likely that a polycrest remedy will be indicated.

I had a case, for example, where the patient was open, communicative and very expressive of his emotions. This was entered into the computer, along with his other symptoms, and to my surprise Natrum muriaticum was the indicated choice of the computer. It was given and it acted beautifully.

There was no essence in this case because there is an essence only when one is sick in essence and not everyone is sick on the emotional and mental levels. Therefore this Natrum muriaticum was sick only on the physical level, and so only these symptoms should have been taken into consideration. If the computer did not take such an objective view this case would likely have not been solved because of the prejudice to give Natrum muriaticum only when there is grief, introversion, cramped emotions and emotional vulnerability.

When the mental picture is there, then it is necessary to take it into consideration, but when it is not there then use the strongest homeopathic symptoms in the case and hold onto these to find the simillimum.