The Matridonal Remedies
Vis Medicatrix Naturae
Angelica Lemke, ND
The “Matridonal Remedies” are an underutilized subset of homeopathic sarcodes (remedies made from human tissue) that I have found to be very useful for children, particularly those on the autism spectrum. These sarcodes are derived from human tissues related to pregnancy and motherhood, including placenta, amniotic fluid, and breast milk. In general, sarcodes are often given to strengthen the holistic function of particular tissue. Thyroidinium, for example, is made from the thyroid gland and helps with thyroid function and thyroid hormone regulation. In this way, sarcodes can be helpful when a particular body tissue or organ has an imbalance, whether excess or deficiency. In addition, these sarcodes, and especially the “matridonal remedies,” can be useful when a child has lost or been disconnected from a particular material.
I learned about these remedies from a sweet and simple book by Melissa Assilem called Matridonal Remedies of the Humanum Family – Gifts of the Mother,1 in which she includes provings and cases on:
- Lac humanum/maternum (human milk)
- Folliculinum (human estrogen)
- Placenta humana (human placenta)
- Vernix casoesa (the substance covering a newborn’s skin)
- Amniota humana (human amniotic fluid)
- Umbilicus humanus (human umbilicus)
Assilem prefaces the book with an interesting thought in reference to these remedies: “I have come to believe that the most profound gift we as humans receive is the sense of self. It is first bestowed in its earthly form in the womb. Could it not therefore be true that when this sense of self is lost, it can be retrieved through the very materials that gave it to us in the first place? These substances are made for the creation of our humanness.”
Overall, the functions of these “matridonal” tissues are to help babies feel grounded and integrated in their physical bodies. In other words these remedies help give the spirit a sense of bodily self, and a sense of physical boundaries that help denote self. Therefore, qualities in a child or adult, that beckon the use of these remedies include:
- Spacy or ungrounded feeling, poor balance, sensation of floating away
- Feelings of isolation, lack of connection to humanity
- Feeling “alien” and not human, and perhaps lacking empathy
- “I don’t know who I am,” or “I am not the person I should be”
- “Life has never started for me,” or “I wish I could start over”
In terms of physical health history, these remedies are also useful for birth trauma, preterm delivery, lack of mothering, and lack of breastfeeding. Below are 2 cases in which these remedies led to key progressions in the path towards health.
Case Study 1
Meaghan and Emma are 5-year-old twin girls. My first impression when they arrive at my office is that they have a lightness of being and inner peace that makes them seem almost angelic. They softly wandered around the room, and gazed up at the ceiling as if communing with the clouds above. They are both on the spectrum, with limited speech (first words at 4 years old), a tendency to remain aloof from other kids, and exhibiting some mild stimming behaviors. Despite this, they are also considered “hyperlexic,” meaning they can read words above their age-level. They were born 2 months premature via emergency C-section, weighing 2.5 pounds each, because one of the twins was compressed against the other, limiting her growth and blood supply.
Neither had apparent regressions after vaccinations, and their general physical health was mostly good, with some mild food allergies. Their mother’s primary concern is that they need to ”come out of their own little world.” Not only do they generally avoid socializing with other kids, but they also do not interact much with each other.
Because the preterm delivery was an obvious trauma in their lives, and one that deprived them of the placental environment, I decided to try Placenta 40C, which was noted by Assilem to be a useful remedy for preemies. The potency of 40C may jump out at some as strange, but interestingly, the provers of the remedy, who tested successive increasing potencies, found the 40C potency to be where the remedy peaked in strength. In the provings, Placenta is described as a ‘potent unblocker.’ Physiologically, placenta provides an important “boundary” function, both removing waste products and delivering nourishment. Other themes that came up in the provings were the ideas of “clearing out, growing up, becoming aware, beginning the journey.”
Almost immediately following their first dose of Placenta 40C, the girls began to speak more in sentences, played with one another more, listened better to instruction, and started asking questions. They came out of the clouds and into the world. They also became more emotional, crying over small things, but this is an expected part of typical development that they had simply not gone through. I kept them on Placenta 40C, dosed once a week, for about 5 months until there was no longer an obvious effect after dosing. During this period, their personalities really emerged. I eventually switched them to more common constitutional remedies (Silica and Phosphorus) and they continued to do well, with one sister being mainstreamed into a neurotypical classroom within 9 months of starting the Placenta 40C, and the other mirroring her progression closely. They are a great success story for homeopathy.
I have found Placenta to be broadly useful for many children on the spectrum, and would encourage any homeopath serving this patient group to study it.
Case Study 2
I saw 10-year-old Jason 2 years after he’d suffered a strong bout of pneumonia. Since that time, he had developed behavior problems, including severe separation anxiety, fear of leaving the house, violent oppositional meltdowns, inability to read, poor memory, depression, a general lack of interest, obsessive-compulsive tendencies, grandiose ideas, agitation, and a constant need for attention. His mother describes his extremes: “trashing the house, throwing food down the stairs, taking my stuff, trying to melt my salt lamp. Got him into the children’s hospital, the cops said they had to cuff him to calm him. He’s punched me, kicked me, bit me, bruised me, he tries to be awful to his sister, spent the whole winter keeping them apart so she won’t get hit. After all that, he will go somewhere to hide and cower.”
His diet had been thoroughly addressed: Jason is “gluten-free, dairy-free, low oxalates, no processed corn, no artificials, low in glutamates, no nightshades, low salicylates, low benzoates, and has no sugar (yes, maple syrup).” As for supplements and medications, “he also takes trazodone twice a day, as well as daily niacin, GABA, inositol, magnesium, zinc, B6, omega 3 and 6, valerian, turmeric, adrenal support, melatonin at night, tyrosine, and the occasional 5-HTP.”
Based on his symptoms, I could give a well-known remedy like Belladonna or Hyoscyamus. However, when I asked his mother to visualize what it was like to be Jason, she painted a richer picture: “He wants to curl into a spot to hide…that is safe and warm and cozy, snuggly, and its all ok…the world is crazy outside, that warm place is like in a womb …you are protected…there is a slight pressure on you that makes you feel safe…someone is taking care of you but you don’t have to deal; he craves that quiet security that a baby gets from his mother.”
This prompted me to look at the matridonal remedies, and I found that much of his symptomology fit Lac maternum, a remedy made from human breast milk collected from multiple nursing women. I have also found that children who need Lac maternum crave pressure, swaddling, and small places to feel safe and grounded. The mental symptoms in the materia medica for this remedy includes:
Heedless, careless what others think. Alternating impatience with patience. Confusion, poor planning. Disorganized. Errors of perception. Dazed. Daydreaming. Indifference, apathy. Detached. Loses things. Indolence, aversion to work. Neglects his business. Anxiety with feeling that control over senses is lost. Sudden anxiety, as if something needs to be done but knows not what. Suspicious, mistrustful, paranoid. Censorious, critical. Disposed to blame others. Quarrelsome. Scolding. Irritability. Argumentative. Anger, irascibility, especially in the morning. Anger with himself. Discontented, displeased with others. Feels righteous. Dwells on past disagreeable occurrences. Irresolution. Aversion to company, better being alone. Isolation. Feelings of loss. Despair of life.
(From Assilem’s Matridonal Remedies of the Humanum Family)
One month after starting Lac maternum 30C, Jason’s mother states, “It’s been really good. He is back at school without a hoopla. He went from I HATE SCHOOL, to I WANT TO GO TO SCHOOL. Still, at moments he blows up and loses his temper – but that gets shorter and shorter. He is more HIM again. He brushes his teeth at night when I ask him to. Totally irritating things he has been doing for years are going away. Everything is not a fight all the time anymore.” He has continued with Lac maternum 30C and is maintaining steady progress.
Overall, these remedies beautifully highlight the unique importance of these substances in mothering and development; not just nutritionally or physiologically, but also in helping to create a sense of self, a feeling of security in a chaotic world, and a feeling of being rooted in your own body.
Note: For more information on the book, go to www.melissaassilem.net.
Angelica Lemke, ND received her naturopathic degree from Bastyr University. She specializes in treating children on the spectrum, PANS and other chronic health conditions using homeopathic remedies. Dr Lemke has learned to apply a wide array of homeopathic methodologies for her clients, including Sankaran’s Sensation Approach, Homotoxicology, and CEASE therapy. She works over the phone and Skype, and has a global clientele. For more information, go to www.holistichealingasd.com.
- Assilem M. Matridonal Remedies of the Humanum Family: Gifts of the Mother. Kandern, Germany: Narayana Publishers; 2009. http://www.narayana-publishers.com/Matridonal-Remedies-of-the-Humanum-Family/Melissa-Assilem/b5335.