Analysis of symptoms
Analysis of symptoms is the artistic method of finding out the cause of the individual disease and resolving the case into common and uncommon symptoms.
That which is out of the common is usually a guide rather than a hindrance. – Sherlock Holmes (a detective character)
Once the case-taking process is completed, a well-trained homeopath studies the case altogether to find out the cause of the disease. He divides the data available into uncommon and common symptoms. So, the analysis of the case starts after the case is thoroughly taken.
The collection of the data will supply the cause of the disease. The analysis is the logical process of separating the numerical totality into different components according to their hierarchy. This process is not a mechanical division but an artistic application of logic and fact. It is a process of discovering the reaction of the patient to the surrounding environment.
In short, an analysis of the case at the end must provide the cause and effect of the patient’s suffering to the physician.
Analysis should help the physician in collecting the following data:
1. Causation of the suffering.
2. Patient’s actual psychophysical personality.
3. The circumstances through which the patient had passed and reached the present psycho-physical constitution.
4. The patient’s response to his environment both physical and emotional.
5. General modalities: Aggravations and ameliorations, the natural modalities of the disease, and the response of the patient towards them.
6. Characteristic particulars.
7. Rare, peculiar, and striking symptoms.
Aphorism 5 explains that the exciting cause in acute diseases and the fundamental cause in chronic diseases is the most significant one to find out during case taking. Prescribing on the basis of the cause of diseases is also an intelligent step in the homeopathic management of cases.
Example: ailments from disappointed love, financial loss, prolonged suppression of anger, emotions, etc. If a reliable cause is unavailable, the physician sorts out the symptoms into common and uncommon varieties.
The common symptoms help him in the nosological diagnosis and general management of the disease only. Uncommon symptoms individualize the case and help in homeopathic prescriptions. Homeopath has to remember always that which seemingly confuses the case, is the actual thing that furnishes the clue to its solution.
Example: A case taken from Dr.Castro’s “Logic of repertories” will explain the importance of causative prescription. An old man of around 60 yrs was diagnosed of having congestive cardiac failure and hypertension. The case was acutely managed by allopathic medications and then was referred to homeopathic management.
On inquiry, it has been found that the old man was from a well-to-do business family. He had four children and one daughter. All of his progeny had settled well except his younger-most son, who was neither interested in studies nor in business. He was of a happy-go-lucky nature. Even his marriage came out to be a failure.
This anxiety about his last son was the only emotional cause in this case as found by Castro. The only remedy that covers “anxiety about his children” in Kent’s Repertory is “Acetic acid”. This remedy improved the patient very well.
“Anxiety about the future of his children” was considered as the cause of disease in this case and not the common symptoms of congestive cardiac failure or any other symptoms of the disease. Analysis of the case demands more patience and time from the physician. Each and every symptom has to be scrutinized in order to come to the conclusion.
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