This section is from the book "The Chronic Diseases, Their Specific Nature And Their Homeopathic Treatment", by Samuel Hahnemann. Also available from Amazon: The chronic diseases, their specific nature and their homeopathic treatment.
The frequent request of a patient to have one symptom, which above others is troublesome to him, removed first of all, is impracticable, but the ignorant patient should be excused for his request.
In the daily written report during the use of an anti-psoric medicine, the patient who lives at a distance should underscore once, for the information of the physician, those incident symptoms during the day, which after a considerable time or a long time he has now felt again for the first time; but those which he never had before and which he first felt on that day, he should underscore twice. The former symptoms indicate that the antipsoric has taken hold of the root of the evil, and will do much for its thorough cure, but the latter, if they appear more frequently and more strongly, give the physician a hint that the antipsoric was not selected quite homoeopathically, and should be interrupted in time and replaced by a more appropriate one.
When the treatment is about half completed, the diminished disease commences to return into the state of latent Psora; the symptoms grow weaker and weaker, and at last the attentive physician will only find traces of it; but he must follow these to their complete disappearance, for the smallest remnant retains a germ for a renewal of the old ailment.* If the physician should here give up the treatment and suppose what the common man (and also the higher class of the non-medical public) is apt to say: "It will now likely get right of itself," a great mistake would be made; for in time there would develop (especially when any important untoward events take place), out of this little remnant of this only diminished Psora, a new chronic disease which gradually would increase unavoidably, according to the nature of diseases springing from unextinguished chronic miasms as shown above.
* So from the water-polypus which has several of its branches lopped off, in time new branches will shoot forth.
The cito, tuto et jucunde (quickly, safely and pleasantly) of Celsus, the patient may reasonably ask from his physician, and from the homoeopath he can rightly expect this in acute diseases springing from occasional causes, as well as in the well-defined intermediate diseases prevalent at times (the so-called intercurrent diseases).
But with especial regard to the "Cito" (quickly), i. e., the hastening of the cure, the nature of the case forbids it, at least in inveterate chronic ailments.*
The cure of great chronic diseases of ten, twenty, thirty and more years' standing (if they have not been mismanaged by an excess of allopathic treatments, or indeed, as is often the case, mismanaged into incurable-ness) may be said to be quickly annihilated if this is done in one or two years. If with younger, robust persons this takes place in one-half the time, then on the other hand in advanced age, even with the best treatment on the part of the physician and the most punctual observance of rules on the part of the patient and his attendants, considerable time must be added to the usual period of the cure. It will also be found intelligible that such a long-continued (psoric) chronic disease, the original miasm of which has had so much time and opportunity in a long life to insert its parasitical roots as it were, into all the joints of the tender edifice of life, is at last so intimately interwoven with the organism that even with the most*appropriate medical treatment, careful mode of life and observance of rules on the part of the patient, great patience and sufficient time will be required to destroy this many armed polypus in all its parts, while sparing the independence of the organism and its powers.
* Only an ordinary ignorant practitioner can lightly promise to cure a severe inveterate disease in four to six weeks. He need not, indeed, keep his promise! What does he risk, if as a matter of course, his treatment only aggravates the disease? Can he lose anything? Any honor? No; for his colleagues, who are like him, do no better. Can he lose in self-respect? Should he yet have any to lose?
The strength of a patient under an antipsoric treatment, even if it should be continued ever so long, ought continually to increase from the very commencement of the correct treatment even to the restoration of health and of the normal state. The strength increases during the whole of the cure without the use of the so-called tonics, and the patients joyously rise up again of themselves in proportion as their life is delivered from its corroding enemy.*
The best time for taking a dose of antipsoric medicine seems to be, not an hour before going to bed but, rather, early in the morning while fasting. The medicine in the numbered paper (as also all that succeed), if it is desired that it should act but feebly, should be taken dry and allowed to dissolve on the tongue, or be moistened with two or three drops of water on a spoon, and by itself, without in either case drinking anything after it or eating anything within half an hour or a whole hour.*
* It is inconceivable how allopathic physicians could think of curing chronic diseases through a continuance of exhausting and debilitating treatments, without being restrained by their lack of success from repeating continually their perverse treatment. The amara which they give between, together with the quinine, without being able to supply the strength lost, only add new evils.
Numbering the powders continuously has the convenience that the physician when the patients render their daily report (especially those living at a distance), putting first the date and the number of the powder taken that day, can recognize the day when the patient took his medicine, and can judge of the progress of its action according to the report of the following day.
After taking the medicine the patient should keep perfectly quiet at least a full hour, but without going to sleep (sleep delays the beginning of the action of the medicine). He must avoid during this hour, as indeed throughout the treatment, all disagreeable excitement, nor should he strain his mind immediately after taking the dose, in any way, either by reading or computing, by writing, or by conversations requiring meditation.