This section is from the book "A Compend Of The Principles Of Homoeopathy", by William Boericke. Also available from Amazon: A Compend of the Principles of Homoeopathy as Taught by Hahnemann.
After Hahnemann's discovery of the Law of Cure in 1790, he worked incessantly investigating the action of drugs on the healthy, and practiced according to the newly-discovered law and by the light and aid the new Materia Medica was able to give. The success of this practical application of the Law of Cure was striking in the extreme. Especially true was this in the treatment of acute diseases and epidemics. As to chronic diseases, in which allopathic treatment was so often worse than useless, homoeopathy rarely failed to improve or ameliorate the conditions in a very short time. But, though the patients were often very much relieved, they were not cured, for their complaints would return more or less by many unfavorable circumstances, such as errors of diet, poor hygienic conditions, unfavorable weather, mental emotions, etc. Their return, under these circumstances, was generally attended with the appearance of new symptoms, often more troublesome and more difficult of removal than before. Even when the treatment of these chronic diseases was conducted strictly according to the doctrines of the homoeopathic art, Hahnemann himself owned that "their commencement was cheering, their progress less favorable, their issue hopeless". "And yet," he adds, "the homoeopathic doctrine itself is built upon the impregnable pillars of truth and must ever remain so". Whence this inferior success, this absolute want of success in the prolonged treatment of chronic diseases? If homoeopathy is based upon a natural law - nature's law for healing - and the conditions for carrying out the law are observed, there ought not to be any failure - only success. Why, then, this failure at times in certain patients and even typical acute diseases; why this almost constant failure in chronic disease?
* The treatment of drug diseases by the use of the highest potency of the drug producing them is to be tried in these obstinate chronic affections, it is an entirely consistent homoeopathic procedure.
He says that, from the year 1816-17, the solution of this problem occupied him day and night, and at length he succeeded in solving it. Like all of Hahnemann's work, it was the fruit of long and patient observation and study and experiment.
Ten years later, in 1827, he was ready to communicate this new discovery, as he believed this epoch-making theory, to the profession. He summoned to Coethen, where he was then practicing as physician to the reigning prince, two of his most esteemed disciples, Doctors Stapf and Gross, and communicated to them his theory of the origin of chronic diseases and his discovery of a completely new series of medicines for their cure, exhorting them to test the truth of his opinions and discoveries in their own practice. He disclosed this to these two disciples in case his death - for he was then in his seventy-third year - should have occurred before the publication of his book on the subject. This remarkable book, entitled "The Chronic Diseases, Their Peculiar Nature and Homoeopathic treatment," duly appeared the next year, 1828. With the publication of this book, supplementing the Organon, the high-water mark of medical philosophy was reached. A few generations hence this will be generally acknowledged.