Can’t Have Just One

Joseph Kellerstein, ND

Although I’ve never been the sharpest tool in the shed I have flattered myself by thinking I am moderately intelligent. The following situation had me and most people I’ve told about it just scratching their heads. Prepare your itch!

David is a bright-eyed, dark-haired, and very self-aware 9-year-old. Three years ago he developed a moon face and foamy urine. He was hospitalized and given a diagnosis of nephrotic syndrome (now asymptomatic). He has an allergy to peanuts (anaphylaxis) for the past 3 years. Typically, he develops bronchitis once or twice annually.

The chief complaint today is also of a 3-year duration. It is abdominal pain on a daily basis. Every morning after rising, David develops a horrible stomach (abdominal) pain. With the pain he just bends double and applies pressure. Both of these do ameliorate it to a mild degree. The pain would appear quite suddenly and disappear gradually after stool in the morning.

The patient expressed a strong aversion to eggs and meat, with a desire for fruit and lemons (strong). He is seldom thirsty. As I said, he is bright, aware, and active. On questioning, Mom tells me he is a friendly and affectionate young man who cares deeply about his family. David is warm and is sensitive to having his bedroom too warm.

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Given the description of the complaint, I really did want to give Colocynthis, but the totality pulled me away. Instead, being the homeopathic genius I am, I gave Pulsatilla, which promptly did nothing.

The very kind Mom and David returned to the scene of my crime, still eager and full of confidence (whew). I reviewed the case with all the force of years of amassed skills in questioning, and fully prepared to amend my meager case with renewed clarity. After another 30 minutes of questions, I stared down at my desolate blank sheet of paper and, in true style befitting a homeopath, I gave Sulphur. Quite a bold stroke, if I do say so myself. After all, it was first on the rep chart.

Okay, strike 2 it was. After several more strikes I was just about to give Colocynthis when Mom finally did get a touch impatient with my perfect record. So it was time to buckle in.

I bravely reviewed the case, yet again hoping to scratch up something new. I was told the fruit and lemon craving was less and the meat desire more average, but the aversion to eggs was at least as bad as ever. The pain was clearly a cramping.

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The eggs just kept getting in the way of my giving Colocynthis. Am I crazy?? (Don’t answer— I already know.) Should I just forget about this and go for it? It’s just a small amendment to the totality, after all…

No, I gave Agaricus—yes, a flashy prescription.

Yet another strike! (I’ve re invented baseball.)

There is no more information to be had here. But wait… Mom gives me some statistics on the pain. Since the Agaricus, he was pain free 4 of 7 days! An increase of potency goes nowhere.

I decided to see if there was reasonable choice in a remedy that was known to complement Agaricus.

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Could it be Calc? Calcarea is known to be actually ameliorated from constipation.

GENERALITIES; CONSTIPATION; amel. (5) : 2calc., carb-v.Boe, merc., 2psor., ust.Phat

However, it is in the first grade for aggravation before stool!

GENERALITIES; STOOL; agg.; before (55) : acon., 3Aloe, am-c., am-m., ant-t., 3Arg-n., ars., asar., bar-c., 3Bor., bry., calad., calc., canth., caps., carb-an., carb-v., caust., cham., chin., cocc., colch., dig., 3Dios., dulc., ferr., 3Gamb., ictod., kali-c., lach., 3Mag-c., mang., 3Merc., merc-c., mez., nat-c., nat-s., nux-v., op., petr., phos., podo., psor., puls., 3Rheum, rhod., rhus-t., sabad., sep., spig., staph., stront-c., sulph., 3Thuj., 3Verat.

So I have been guided to this point on the premise of complementarity to Agaricus and the reasonability of the Calcarea to the symptoms of the case.

I gave Calcarea 30C, 2 pellets per dose, once daily for 3 weeks.

When David returned, you might have been able to see my picture in the rubric “ailments from anticipation.”

Mom looked at me sternly and said, “no change.” Well, I guess I should’ve given Colocynthis all along. So what if there was an aversion to eggs. I gave David Colocynthis 200C prn for 3 weeks.

David and his mother returned to the office. I was gritting my teeth in anticipation. She looked me straight in the eye and said, “NO PAIN. HE IS ALL BETTER.” “I knew Colocynthis looked like a great choice.” Mom was briefly puzzled. “No, I never did give the Colocynthis remedy. I left your office last time and later realized I did not follow your prescription. I had only given 1 pellet of Calc 30C daily and not 2. So I went and this time followed instructions using the 2 pellets per day. It took only 3 days before he had no more pain.”

It is true that even the number of pellets can make a difference, and I have had the experience in the past of people instinctively using more pellets to achieve a good result.

This is one case to remember.


Kellerstein headshotJoseph Kellerstein, DC, ND graduated as a chiropractor in 1980 and as an ND in 1984. He graduated with a specialty in homeopathy from the Canadian Academy for Homeopathy, and subsequently lectured there for two years. He also lectured in homeopathy for several years at CCNM; for eight years at the Toronto School of Homeopathic Medicine; and for two years at the British Institute for Homeopathy.  Dr Kellerstein’s mission is the exploration of natural medicine in a holistic context, especially homeopathy and facilitating the experience of healing in patients.

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