Part 7: Application of the Miasmic Theory
A Case History of Sycosis
Normally, we think of gonorrhea of Neisser as the only pathogenic agent involved in the transmission of the sycotic syndrome but this may not be the complete picture. The sycotic miasm also causes a person to become susceptible to a whole range of venereal disorders.
The most probable candidates are chlamydia, trichomonas vaginalis, ureaplasma urealyticum, and candida albicans. This case is an example of a person with an inherited case of sycosis that was activated by the suppression of a chlamydia infection rather than by a new infection of gonococcus. In many of our old books there are stories of the reinstatement of suppressed discharges during the process of homoeopathic treatment.
The following case is an example of how this phenomena comes about. In Homoeopathy we often speak of Hering's laws of cure. One of the most important factors of this law is the reversal of the developmental order of the symptoms. This phenomena was first observed by Samuel Hahnemann and recorded in the 1828 edition of The Chronic Diseases . Hahnemann wrote:
"The latest symptoms that have been added to a chronic disease, which has been left to itself are always the first to yield in an antipsoric treatment; but the oldest ailments and those which have been most constant and unchanged, among which are the constant local ailments, are the last to give way; and this is only effected, when all the remaining disorders have disappeared and the health has been in all other respects almost totally restored."
The following is a case in which an LM potency was used to treat a case of suppressed venereal disease. The client was an Irishman who was studying with a yogi in India.
He was a strong, well built, rather coarse kind of a person. He was not stupid in any way yet sometimes one had to say things a few times before he would grasp what you really meant. His appearance was a bit disheveled in that he wore half Indian and half western clothes.
I had known him for a few years and I had already observed that many of his habits were rather psoric but the predominance of his psychology demonstrated the sycotic miasm. He was a suspicious sort of fellow who looked out of the corners of his eyes and questioned the motives of others and sometimes held fixed opinions.
Compared to the average person in society he was a true religious fanatic as he lived in a cave in far off India with few belongings. These are some of the traits that pointed toward inherited sycosis.
At the same time, he also had something of the dullness, genius and madness that is associated with the syphilitic miasm. This appeared to be the deepest, darkest, most hidden part of his personality.
So it seemed that his miasmic states were layered in the following manner; sycosis was the most active layer, followed by psora which was more latent, and syphilis which was quite deep and dormant. These are only some of my personal observations as I had not taken a detailed case history of his chronic states.
He went to England for a visit and contracted a severe case of chlamydia. This produced a greenish, dirty discharge as well as much local irritation of the penis. I did not see the case in its acute state so I do not know all of the exact symptoms.
He visited a homoeopath who gave him Thuja in the centesimal potency. This did not help the situation so he went to an allopathic doctor who gave him a full course of tetracycline.
The treatment with antibiotics suppressed the acute symptoms so he was left with a little gleety discharge which manifested as a clear or white secretion at the meatus that caused much itching. In the mornings he would express a small amount of the discharge which would return later during the day.
He returned to the allopathic clinic and was told he had non-specific urethritis (NSU) and there was nothing they could do about it. From this time forward he developed several of the symptoms of the sycotic miasm.
First of all, his prostate gland began to swell and become painful with concomitant pains underneath and in his rectum. This was followed by a loss of memory and dulling of the intellect. Evidently his susceptibility to chlamydia was due to his latent sycotic miasm and this new infection activated the entire syndrome.
This was not a simple local urethral discharge caused by NSU. The entire sycotic syndrome began to manifest deeply in his constitution. He began to develop a pain in his lower back that started moving up his spine to his head. At the same time, his extremities were becoming arthritic and painful.
This was followed by a further deterioration of his mental and intellectual levels and his memory really began to slip. He became dull and had difficulty thinking and could not find the proper words when speaking. He began to feel guilty, dirty and contaminated. Although he wore ragged clothes, he was not particularly dirty yet he could smell his own body odor and it upset him greatly.
By now he had dullness, sadness, depression, despondency, doubt of cure, and salvation. When he looked around he would squint his eyes which made him look shifty. His memory continued to fail and his mind became more confused.
He became very sleepy, apathetic, tired and lazy as well as more dirty as he started to change his clothes less than before. The symptoms continued to increase over a period of around eight months until he was in pretty bad shape. I formed the totality of the symptoms around the syndrome of the sycotic miasm and the state of his present temperament.
His religious and philosophical ideas, rough lifestyle, ragged clothes, depression, despondency, sleepiness, loss of memory, tiredness and laziness led me to investigate the remedy, Sulphur. These mental states were best reflected in Phatak's Materia Medica which gives under mind:
"Dull, difficult thinking: misplaces or can not find proper words; when talking and writing. Too lazy to rouse himself and too unhappy to live. Strong tendency to religious and philosophical reveries, with fixed ideas. Hopeful dreamers. Disgust, up to nausea about any effluvia arising in his own body".
The itchy nature of his gleety discharge and the redness of his meatus also pointed toward this remedy. This was confirmed by the general concomitants like his warmer constitution, his desire for soupy foods, and his sensitivity to his own body odors.
Sulphur is a multi-miasmic remedy although it is most famous for its antipsoric nature. In Kent's Repertory it is listed as a 2 for sycosis as well as for syphilis. It seems that acquiring the venereal disease brought out this man's inherited sycotic miasm which magnified certain aspects of his potentially Sulfurous nature.
Before the acquired venereal disease he seemed quite sycotic as he was more suspicious and closed minded than is usual for psora or Sulphur. It was as if the newly acquired venereal syndrome actually made him more Sulfurous than he was before the suppressed sycotic infection.
Perhaps the suppression had produced a complex disease as his symptoms seemed to be rather psoro-sycotic with a dormant, hidden syphilitic layer. I was very excited because Sulphur was one of the only LM potencies I had at the time and I wanted to experiment with them.
In aphorism 281 of The Organon Hahnemann taught that sensitivity can be measured on a scale of 1 to 1000. I felt sure that this gentleman was on the low end of that sensitivity scale.
After the suppression of his primary symptoms, a Dutch homoeopath had given him all sorts of high potency remedies yet he felt absolutely nothing. Anyone with an average to high sensitivity would have felt some good or bad reactions to so many high potency remedies yet he felt absolutely nothing.
Taking into account the sluggishness of his nature at this time, his rather coarse lifestyle, and the fact he could take so many high potencies without any effects, I decided his constitutional sensitivity was rather low. For this reason I began the case with Sulphur LM 0/3.
In The Organon Hahnemann recommends beginning LM cases in the "lowest degrees" of potency. Most chronic cases are started on the LM system with the 0/1 potency, although under certain conditions, cases may be begun with the LM 0/2 and LM 0/3. As this individual seemed to be at the lower end of the sensitivity scale I began the case with Sulphur LM 0/3.
This is the highest potency I have used to begin a chronic case at the present date.
Conclusion: A Case History of Sycosis