Lac caninum. is, as we must recognize, a very potent subversive and therefore remedial agent. If anyone doubt this, let him study the Provings. Glance at its mental symptoms, some of them detailed on page 71 of this issue, to see that it has as large a range of imaginations and terrors as any drug in our pharmacopoeia:- and it is the marked “mentals” that are, so Hahnemann teaches, of supreme importance in prescribing. And here, a point! It is the drugs that have been proved in the higher potencies that reveal their delicate nervous and mental symptoms. The more crude dosages only evoke the more gross effects: the systemic lesions. Such drugs as Lachesis, and Lac can. are so very definite with their useful symptoms, because proved in the higher potencies.
But dogs milk, as a remedy, did not originate with the homoeopaths; but some among them, notably that pioneer in the Nosodes, the American, Dr. Swan, hearing of its extra-ordinary usefulness in an epidemic of malignant diphtheria, potentized it, and proved it, and thereby showed its exact sphere in medicine; and, as so often, demonstrated that its ancient fame, corresponded with its present, scientific uses as revealed by the provings.
All drugs of very special and unique action, are easily studied, and well worth learning up. The polychrests, “the common drugs of many uses” will serve us ordinarily; and when we have mastered Sulphur , Sepia, Lycopodium, Calcarea, Nux, etc., etc., we are a long way on towards running, fairly easily and successfully, an ordinary out-patient clinic. But the less universally-useful drugs, of very peculiar and distinctive features, are less frequently, yet amazingly helpful. Once mastered, they romp in brilliantly every time, and make prescribing an excitement and a delight. Generally they do not “work out”, unless for one who has mastered the secret, that the best work is done with a few of the “strange, rate and peculiar symptoms”, fitting the case, rather than with a host of somewhat indefinite general symptoms, which, if politely given precedence, will often only suggest severe al remedies of the polychrest type, and perhaps completely miss the one brilliant and indispensable.
But, we must hark back to our subject, the peculiarities of Lac can. As said, it is the remedy, par excellence, of fears and terrifying imaginations: among them SNAKES loom tremendously. The tissues it can severely annoy and successfully comfort are, skin; its ulcerations red and glistening:-mucous membranes, especially throat, as in diphtheria, where it has been found prophylactic as well as specifically curative:-gland troubles :- nerve troubles; and as said, mental troubles.
The Lac can. throat is very sensitive to external touch (Lach.), as well as internally-terribly sensitive. If feels as if it were closing: he wants to keep the mouth open open, lest he should choke. Swallowing is difficult-almost impossible, yet with constant inclination to swallow, when pains shoot up into ears (Phyto.). Feeling of a lump in throat which goes in swallowing, only to return (Ign.). The worst pain is when swallowing solids. Throat feels dry, husky, as if scalded. Lac can, is not only one of the great remedies of diphtheria, but of syphilis when that attacks the throat; the throat has a shiny, glazed, red appearance, or characteristic patches, that “look like white china”.
We have already pointed out the distinctive character of its pains: they fly about, or characteristically, change from side to side and back again. These pains may be neuralgic, rheumatic, or ovarian. Boger (Synopsis) gives its special regions as “NERVES: THROAT: female generative organs.” It not only affects the ovaries, but inflames and conjests the uterus, whose haemorrhages are bright and stringy. (Dark and stringy, Croc.) They come in gushes, but (unlike those of Ipec.) they clot easily. “Its sore throats are apt to begin and end with menstruation.” The mammae are also affected: full, lumpy, sensitive to the least jar, very painful and must be supported when going up and down stairs . . . required to dry up milk”. In this, and in its sensitiveness to jar, it reminds one of Bell .
Lac can. is an uneasy sleeper. Cannot get a comfortable position. “There is no way she can put her hands that they do not bother her : falls asleep, at last, on her face” (Med., Cina.). Dr. H. C. ALLEN sums up more of its characteristic. For nervous, restless, highly sensitive organisms.
Very forgetful, absentminded, makes purchases and walks away without them.
In writing, uses too many words and not the right ones : omits letters or words : cannot concentrate to read or study.
Despondent, hopeless: nothing worth living for : her disease is hopeless ! has not a friend in the world. Could weep. Cross and irritable : child cries and screams all the time, especially at night. Attacks of rage; cursing and swearing. Intense “ugliness”.
Coryza : one nostril stopped up, the other free and discharging these alternate. Discharge acrid: nose and upper lip raw.
Can’t eat enough to satisfy; as hungry after meals as before.
Sensation as if breath would leave her, when lying down: must get up and walk.
When walking, seems to be walking on air: when lying, does not seem to touch the bed.
Intense, unbearable aching of spine: aches from base of brain to coccyx. Very sensitive to touch and pressure.
His other important points, we have already indicated.
But in his Materia Medica of the Nosodes he writes, in regard to Lac caninum. “Like Lachesis, and many other well-known polychrests in the Materia Medica, this remedy met most violent apposition from ignorance and prejudice. It was for years looked upon as one of the novelties or delusions of those who believed in and used the dynamic remedy; yet its wonderful therapeutic powers have slowly but surely overcome every obstacle.
It was successfully used by Dioscorides., Rhasis and Pliny in ancient times. Sammonicus and Sectus praise it in photophobia, otitis and other affections of the eye and ear. Pliny claimed that it cured ulceration of the internal os. It was then used as an antidote to many deadly poisons.
The use of the remedy was revived by Reisig, of New York , who, while traveling in Europe , heard it lauded as a remedy for throat diseases, and on his return used it successfully in an epidemic of malignant diphtheria. he called the attention of Bayard, Wells and Swan to the wonderful results he obtained during that epidemic, and induced them to give it a trial.
Reisig potentized it to the 17th cent. from which the potencies of wan and Fincke were prepared. The profession is indebted to the fatigueable labour of Swan for its provings, which were made from the 30th, 200th and higher potencies . . . The provings of this remedy have placed it among the polychrests of our school and verified and confirmed the clinical accuracies of the observers of ancient times.
Dr. Allen gives striking cases of its power even in what we have ventured to call “Chronic Diphtheria”.
NASH tells that he had thought it disgraceful to try to foist dogs milk on the profession, as a remedy, but after accumulated evidence, he tried it on a case of rheumatism, wandering from joint to joint, that had resisted Plus., and where it not only wandered, but crossed to and fro, in the manner of Lac can. And the case cured very quickly. Then a case of scarlatina with side-to-side-and-back pains and throat trouble, and again Lac can. scored over Rhus, which had seemed indicated. Then a bad case to tonsillitis, choking and struggling in effort to swallow, where alternate sides were worse, and again Lac can. cured within thirty-six hours.
Then he got three clerks in a store to prove it:-in the 200th potency, taken to-hourly. They all got sore throats, one with patches on both tonsils.
Nash finds it e specially useful not only for the inflammatory affections that alternate sides; but also for breasts and throats that get sore at every menstrual period: and also in mastitis, the great indication being, they cannot bear a jar; has to hold them up stepping and going down stairs.
KENT , in his small Lecture on Lac can. says, All the milks should be potentized, they are out most excellent remedies, they are animal products and foods of early animal life, and therefore correspond to the beginnings of our innermost physical nature. If we had provings of monkeys, cows mares and human milk, they would be of great value. Lac defloratum has done excellent work and so has this remedy. Lac can. is in its beginnings yet, although it has made some marvellous cures . . . It is deep- acting and long-acting; the provers felt its symptoms for years after the proving was made. It abounds in nervous symptoms . . . The mental symptoms are prolonged and distressing. It makes ulcers very red, and has cured such ulcers: ulcers are dry, glistening, as if covered with epithelium. An important remedy in co,plaints following badly treated diphtheria, in paralysis and other conditions dating back to diphtheria . . . oversensitive violently hysterical, and causes all sorts of strange and apparently impossible symptoms. For example, a woman lay in bed with fingers abducted, and would go wild if they touched each other :-not worse from hard pressure, but she would scream if they touched . . . This state is difficult to cure outside Lac can. and Lachesis.
A strange and peculiar vertigo : as if floating in mid-air, or not touching the bed . . .
Then, the changing sides : in throats, rheumatic affections, headaches and neuralgias . . . Ambulating erysipelas attacks first one side, then the other, then back again . . . inflammation sore throats do the same.
Full of imaginations, and harassing, tormenting thoughts. No reality in the things that be : thinks that everything she says is a lie. (Compare Alumina.) . . . she is not herself, and her properties not her own-as wears somebody elses nose. And so on :-we have already emphasized most of the points. Putrid mouth. Wherever there is mucous membrane, there will be exudate : a grey, fuzzy coating, like that piling up on the tongue . . . We have already given the characteristic symptoms of throat, mammae, etc.
BLACK LETTER SYMPTOMS:
Swallowing very difficult, painful, and almost impossible.
Soreness of throat begins with a tickling sensation, which causes constant cough; then a sensation of a lump on one side, causing constant deglutition; this condition entirely ceases, only to commence on the opposite side, and often alternates, again returning to its first condition; these sore throats are very apt to begin and end with the menses.
Tonsils inflamed and very sore, red and shining, almost closing throat; dryness of fauces and throat; swelling of submaxillary glands.
Diphtheritic membrane white like china; mucous membrane of throat glistening as if varnished; membranes leave one side and go to the other repeatedly. Desire for warm drinks, which may return through the nose. Post-diphtheritic paralysis.
Serviceable in almost all cases where it is required to dry up milk.
When walking seems to be walking on air: when lying does not seem to touch the bed.
Erratic disposition of symptoms: pains constantly flying from one part to another.
Volume: 1938 Mar Vol VII No 3
By Dr M L Tyler