Homeopathy Delaware was pleased to have Robert Bannan, homeopath, speak with us on November 1st about Boenninghausen’s straight forward, fairly quick, helpful method for finding a remedy for the symptomatic person – C.L.E.M.S.
Homeopathy is patient-centered – we need to understand the following from the patient and or the family:
- Concomitants – what symptom(s) go along with the chief complaint
- Location – where does the patient feel the symptoms
- Etiology – what has happened in the patient’s life to cause the symptoms, what is the root
- Modality – what modifies the symptoms – betters or worsens them
- Sensation – what does the patient / symptom(s) feel like or what is the symptom picture called ( e.g. flu, concussion, etc. )
- We know this system by its acronym – C.L.E.M.S.
Etiology and Concomitants are often the most important.
Once we have the C.L.E.M.S. information about the patient, we need a homeopathic Materia Medica and Repertory to find a remedy based on the principle of the Law of Similars – similar suffering, ‘likes cure likes’. Rob suggested getting Boericke’s “Materia Medica“, a great tool that has a Repertory in the back. A good companion would be John Henry Clarke’s “The Prescriber”
Learn your way around Boericke – look in the Repertory, locate the sections of the body and discover where to find symptoms. It would be the first book for a doctor working with patients in a hospital setting.
Robert illustrated the use of C.L.E.M.S. with several stories of people cured of acute symptoms.
- A person presented with an extremely painful red burning area the size of a saucer which was quickly spreading. The skin was indurated, as in cellulitis. Using Boenninghausen’s method, Etiology was determined to be an insect sting / bite. In Boericke’s Repertory there are about 25-30 remedies under the Section of the body called Skin, and then, within the rubric called ‘insect bites/stings’. In this case, the symptom which was ‘going on at the same time’, or the Concomitant, was induration of cellular tissue. Crossing these two rubrics, insect bites and induration of cellular tissue, gave 2 remedies. The remedy the patient received allowed the inflammation to recede in five minutes with full resolution thereafter.
Etiology is a place on which to hang our hat.
Remember that every disease is a process. The symptoms elicited in the beginning of a proving are the beginning of a process. So, in a sick person, the initial symptoms are important.
Therapeutics Along with Boenninghausen’s method, C.L.E.M.S., a therapeutic approach to finding the similar remedy for the patient’s suffering can be used. For instance, look at a group of acute remedies with an affinity to a disease process and choose among them when there is acute distress from the chronic disease. In acute asthma, for instance, six or so remedies have been found to deal with a crisis, based on which remedy is the most similar to the patient’s suffering. When the crisis resolves, the person needs to seek constitutional care to get behind what the process is about. Therapeutic approach can also be used in cases that do not have a chronicity.
- A person having an asthma attack is hanging her head out the window to get air. The asthma is the Sensation. ‘Better from being in open air’ is the Modality. Looking at the group of therapeutic remedies for asthma, one remedy alleviated the crisis.
- A man is in bed with flu with 104 temperature and is moaning. Look at the therapeutic group of remedies for influenza found in the Repertory under Generalities section and also under Fever section. Again, using the Repertory, go to Mind section and to the rubric ‘moaning, with heat’ which is the Concomitant as it is going on at the same time. Cross these rubrics to get to the remedy, Eupatorium perfoliatum, which will heal. Read about this remedy in Boericke’s Materia Medica to confirm your choice prior to administering it.
- A boy caught his fingertip in a collapsing table, tearing off his nail. Etiology = injury; Location= parts rich in nerves. Look in the Repertory in the Generals section to find Injuries, to parts rich in nerves. Hypericum will heal. Read about Hypericum in the Materia Medica to confirm your choice prior to administration.
Unless the person is suffering from mental symptoms, where the Etiology could, for example, be grief or shock, do not use metal symptoms in trying to figure out a remedy for the case. You will be walking on thin ice and will be led astray.