Sunday, March 19, 2023

Stomach flu 2023


If you haven't had the stomach flu yet, you're lucky. It is really going around, and this one's a doozy.  Sudden vomiting, diarrhea, sometimes both at the same time. It is all about the gastrointestinal system this time. 

Based on the symptoms experienced lately, I'll give the top remedy first followed by other helpful remedies:

Arsenicum album: Vomiting and diarrhea at the same time with intense weakness/prostration. Generally chilly, could get visible intense chills/shaking when symptoms are worst. Thirst but vomits after just drinking even a little. Sipping warm or lukewarm drinks generally goes better on the stomach than cold drinks. Stool/diarrhea is very offensive/smelly. Symptoms are often worse in the middle of the night, 1-3am. Urine is dark, brownish.

Veratrum album: this is the classic remedy for vomiting and diarrhea at the same time. Usually this is used for food poisoning but can be used for flus as well. Forceful vomiting and diarrhea. Same chilliness. There is thirst for cold water and craving for sour things.

Pulsatilla: great nausea and desire for company/comfort. Not thirsty even with severe diarrhea. 

I hope you don't get this flu, but in case you do...keep these remedies on hand!


Tuesday, January 3, 2023

December 2022-January 2023: Periorbital Cellulitis--Belladonna, Rhus tox plus others


It was a strange Christmas week.  Lots of people had colds and coughs.  I took time off to enjoy family and the snowy mountains for three days. One day in I got a call from a patient: her daughter had swelling in the lower right eyelid. She had had a mild cold for a week or more and now this happened. Mom had some homeopathics with her as well as colloidal silver which is great for eye infections. We discussed how to use them and they were able to avoid an urgent care visit during vacation.

After three days of snow, I came home, unpacked and went to bed. Then at 4:30am my daughter woke me up because her eyes were swollen. One eye was red, swollen on both upper and lower lids, and the whites of her eyes were slightly pink. Also her eyes were watering like crazy. She had had a bad cold/sinus infection for a few days while I was away and now this was happening.  This pointed more towards periorbital cellulitis, which can be serious.  In addition to colloidal silver and homeopathics, we made the decision to play it safe and get a second opinion for antibiotics. 

While at Walgreens to get some homeopathic eye drops, the girl in front of me was buying Benedryl and steroid cream because she had swelling in her lower eyelids. The checker mentioned that a woman had been in earlier that day to get medicine for swollen eyes.  Seems like it was going around! So here's what I think has been happening:

Periorbital cellulitis is infection/inflammation of the deep tissues surrounding the eyes. Usually it occurs a few days after onset of a cold or sinus infection. The infection can spread to the eyes or surrounding tissues by coughing, sneezing and touching the eyes, or spread internally in the tissues. For whatever reason, this circulating cold is getting into the eyes very easily.

I've mentioned that BELLADONNA flus are circulating. The eye inflammation now does follow a typical Belladonna pattern: rapid onset, painful, red, swollen. However, there are other remedies to consider:

BELLADONNA: rapid onset, hot, painful, swollen and eyes are sensitive to light. Throbbing or shooting pains go with this remedy. This is a top remedy for children.

APIS: rapid onset, stinging pain, better with cold applications (I don't think this is a good remedy now, but it might be for some people. Typically this is the remedy for allergic reactions that cause swelling.)

RHUS TOX: inflammations that are painful, particularly on movement, such as when you move the eye back and forth. If Rhus tox is the right remedy, using very hot washcloths/hot packs on the eye will feel very good. There can be eye watering and pus in the eye as well.

EUPHRASIA: great for redness and eye swelling that feels hot. The classic symptom is that this comes with watering of the eyes or even thick mucous discharge at times. The eyes will feel as if there is pressure on the back of them or surrounding them. 

HEPAR SULPH: a great remedy for lingering infections such a mild cold that has turned into a bronchitis or sinus infection. This remedy is used often for bacterial infections because it is best used towards the end of an illness when yellow or green sticky mucus is present. If the eye discharge is yellow, consider Hepar sulph. However, I think right now Rhus Tox and Euphrasia might be a better match.

ARSENICUM: for burning pain where warmth to the eye (not hot)  feels very good. If the person is also very chilly, Arsenicum may be a good remedy for blepharitis or other swellings around the eye. 

Luckily both Similisan and Walgreens have homeopathic eye drops (Pink Eye Relief) that have Belladonna, Euphrasia and Hepar sulph all in one. Another great thing about these products is that they also contain silver sulfate which is anti-microbial. You can also put colloidal silver  (if you have that on hand) right into the eye to kill bacteria and virus.

Periorbital cellulitis can be very serious so if the eye swelling is intense, it hurts to move the eyes or if the eye is bulging, then head to the ER. IV antibiotics may be needed to prevent the loss of vision or spread of infection to the brain (meningitis). Use the homeopathics and colloidal silver on the way to ER and if the symptoms are reduced by half or more by the time you get to the ER, you'll probably be able to avoid antibiotics. 

Wednesday, December 21, 2022

Belladonna proves effective for earaches and fevers....also other remedies right now....


As you may know, three different flus are going around. In addition to COVID. Some remedies have come up as useful for what's going on:

#1 Remedy: BELLADONNA.  Belladonna is great to have on hand for sudden high fevers and ear aches. Fevers lately have been up to 104+ with the current flu. Typically a child might feel fine during the day and then after going to bed, they wake up crying of ear pain and with a fever. Even adults have been getting ear infections with the current flu. Belladonna ear pain is typically very painful and pulsating. The ear my feel hot to the touch and even look red on the outside. Or the person has a red face and cold hands. Belladonna flus can also have a very bad sore throat, and this has been going around as well. 

#2 Remedy: IPECACUANHA. Ipecacuanha is the homeopathic made from the herbal remedy that induces vomiting. Don't take that if you want to treat these flu symptoms. Take the homeopathic (diluted) form of the remedy. A 30c is the best choice.  Ipecacuanha is great for coughs that make you gag. The cough is so bad that you gag while coughing and might even vomit. Also Ipecacuanha is good for wheezing or feeling of suffocation with heaviness in the chest and stuck mucous. 

#3 Remedy: GELSEMIUM. This is a carry-over from COVID. A top COVID remedy for the fatigue and brain fog that accompanies the flu. Also good for that initial feeling of your skin being very sensitive when you first start feeling chilled like you are getting sick. Also good for headaches that feel like they are behind your eyes or make your head and eyelids feel heavy.

#4 Remedy: ALLIUM CEPA. This remedy which is well known for allergies can also be used for colds. It is great for colds that quickly go to the larynx and chest.  The tissues (nose and throat and bronchiols) can feel raw. The nose is irritated by the excoriating thin watery mucous. Eyes can also be watery and irritated. Usually people with this type of cold/flu feel better outside in fresh air. So if you feel like this, don't bundle up in bed, get outside for a bit.

#5 Remedy: HEPAR SULPH CALC. This remedy is for the last stages of colds and flu where after 2 or more weeks there is a cough or nasal drainage where it feels like there is stuck mucous. Mucous can be green or yellow at this point. Most people think they need an antibiotic when they see this color mucous, but try some Hepar sulph and see if you can get it to clear.

You can take any of these remedies in a 30c dose 3-5 times a day. Take another dose when symptoms seem to worsen or come back after they had subsided. If you're not sick yet, get these remedies to have on the shelf. Particularly Belladonna will help for those late night sudden earaches and fevers.

Sunday, January 16, 2022

Belladonna--possible Omicron remedy or is it a Belladonna cold going around?


There's a new kid in town and it's called Omicron

It is quickly caught and gets passed around very easily. People think it might be just a cold, or a headache.  Then symptoms are pretty bad or as precaution they decide to do a test...ding ding ding! COVID!

Maybe it's the vaccines, the previous antibodies or maybe it's just the nature of the variant that makes Omicron less severe symptomatically than previous variants.

And perhaps there is also a flu going around that is not Omicron but has similar symptoms to the new variant. At any rate, here are the symptoms people are having:

-sudden, severe headache. Migraine. Sinus headache, Throbbing headache

-feeling terrible. Slight fever.

-sinuses completely blocked

After hearing detailed symptoms from two people diagnosed with Omicron, I realised this variant might have a different remedy than previous variants. It sounded like Belladonna: 1) symptoms come on quickly, 2) strong throbbing headache worse stooping over, 3) sinus congestion. Then after a couple days things improve. By improve I mean that the severe symptoms are resolving. After that the person can have more typical COVID symptoms of dry cough or fatigue but on much lower scale than Delta. 

On Friday I woke up with a little nausea and a headache that quickly got worse. By the afternoon it was very painful especially when bending over to pick something up off the floor. there was pressure pounding in my head.  That's why I chose the weather picture above. Looks like a lot of pressure that shoots the snow through the snow blower.  The belladonna headache is worse stooping because there is no place for the pressure to go. It's all getting pushed to the head, which is why with Belladonna fevers you will have cold extremities but a hot head and face. I did take some Belladonna and by the time I left work my headache was gone. 

The next day a friend that I had dinner with the night before texted that she got a headache as well. It was throbbing. She took aspirin and went out to do some yard work she had planned. Her headache was gone by late afternoon. By the way, I did do a COVID rapid test which was negative.

Typically with Belladonna flus they start and end pretty quickly. That is the benefit. People who tend towards Belladonna flus spike a high fever, go to bed, sweat it out and are better the next day.  I can't say that people with Omicron are better the very next day, however they are getting better much quicker than with Delta. Most people feel not so bad after 2 days and by day 5 they know they are on the mend and out of the woods. For this reason, I actually think it is reasonable that quaruntine should only last 5 days (though I do favor a negative test before venturing out).

There is a lingering dry cough in Omicron that can come on when the Belladonna symptoms subside. For this reason, Bryonia is still a good remedy to take for COVID 19. It's almost as if there are Bryonia and Belladonna strains that occur together. With Bryonia, symptoms typically come on slower with achiness and fatigue, maybe a headache. There has been a new symptom of dizziness and a feeling of sinking into the bed while lying down.  These so far are mild.

Then after a few days the cough can come on and be mild, severe and potentially long lasting. So it seems that with Omicron, either there are mild Bryonia symptoms or none, then the severe Belladonna-like sinus symptoms hit, then they resolve leaving other very mild Bryonia symptoms behind.  Interestingly, I haven't seen as much of the Gelsemium-like variant symptoms of severe fatigue this time though this was a HUGE remedy with Delta. Still, Gelsemium can start with a headache, fever and chills so it is worth a look.

I have seen only a few people with truly low oxygen throughout the pandemic, but now it seems almost nobody has low oxygen with Omicron. This is a good thing as people really don't need to go to the hospital if their oxygen is fine. Actually, you don't need to go to the hospital at all if your symptoms are treated properly at home (preferably by a physician). 

So if you get Omicron, try a combined or alternating dosage of Belladonna and Bryonia (homeopathics).  I think you'll get through it just fine. Remember your pulse oximeter and check your oxygen daily. Take your vitamins. Eat good food. Be good and take care!

Tuesday, September 7, 2021

2020 Remedies still hold true for COVID


Wow, I can't believe it's been over a year since my last post. It has been a crazy year with the virus bouncing around the world, conflicting COVID information, variants and COVID drama.  I had seen only a few patients with COVID in the first year of shut downs.  However in the last month (with the Delta variant) I've seen a ton! The symptoms haven't changed though (despite the variants) and therefore the recommended homeopathics have not changed. 

Symptoms are now also being felt by people who have gotten vaccines. The most common symptoms are usually short lived (less than a week after vaccination) and typically include fatigue, achiness all over, chill (especially with drafts), and for some, diarrhea.

One great thing seen lately is that the 5 remedies I talked about last year for COVID are still effective for COVID and for COVID vaccine reactions! I got my Pfizer vaccine 3 days ago. The first day I had only a little shooting pain in lymph node areas around my body. I was still able to go paddleboarding on the Columbia river. But by the afternoon the next day I felt a little chilled, achy in all joints and tired. Also a little heavy.

Luckily I had my Virus 2020 blend in my purse. I took it (I had the one with the spray top) on the way home from my parents house. In addition I took one of my stand by constitutionals--Rhus tox-- because I had desired a hot tub and ice cream earlier that day.  Achiness that craves very hot water is classic for Rhus tox. I had chosen Rhus as an additional Covid remedy last year for other symptoms (see this post).  By the time I got home, I my achiness had faded and I started to perk up. By next morning i felt completely normal. 

A patient called me at work today to ask for any help for COVID symptoms he had been experiencing x 4 days: fever, fatigue, slight cough and slight chest tightness. He was relatively young and O2 sats were normal.  He stopped by for a curbside pickup of Virus 2020 blend.  A couple of hours later, he texted to say that within 15 minutes of taking it, all of his symptoms resolved.  He had been on his way to the pharmacy to get medication, which he probably will no longer need. 

So the Virus 2020 blend (plus Rhus tox for some people) is still the top treatment for COVID and COVID vaccine related symptoms. For people who get digestive symptoms such as vomiting and diarrhea, I'm guessing that Veratrum album is the best remedy. Few people get those symptoms so I'm leaving that out of my 2020 blend. To recap, my 2020 blend has:

Bryonia--top remedy for dry cough, achiness with movement and cold drafts

Gelsemium--top remedy for fatigue, low fever, heaviness and headache

Eupatorium perf--top remedy for ache that goes down to the bones

Arsenicum--top remedy for a chill that can't be warmed, weakness, and debilitated feeling

Top addition:

Rhus tox--add on for achiness in the joints with desire for hot tub and cold milk.  Opposite to Bryonia which does not like movement, Rhus people like constant movement to ease the joint pain. 

Contact the office for our Virus 2020 blend at 360-433-2727. Take care and stay healthy!

Sunday, April 26, 2020

Breaking News! RHUS TOX, possible remedy for COVID

One of my colleagues who has chronic asthma recently recovered from a fairly severe case of COVID. Honestly if she would have gone to the ER she likely would have been put on a ventilator. Luckily, she did not do that and treated herself at home with supplements, inhalers, breathing treatments, many forms of heat, and a CPAP.  The worst part of her time was 4 days in which she had pain with every breath and pain in most of her joints.

When she reported her case to me, these were her main signs and symptoms:
-painful breath
-painful joints/muscles
-high fever with some sweating but wants to be warm and wrapped up.
-hot showers, hot tea and hot soup all help with cough and pain. She took a long hot steamy shower every day
-chest is tight, as if a band is around it
-bone pain better with movement, she wanted to constantly move to help the pain
-headache terrible, nothing making it better except for being asleep
-fatigue was crushing as if she could not move. She was trying to lie perfectly still except the tiny movements that helped the joint pain

In the Desktop Companion to Physical Pathology, Roger Morrison describes the Rhus tox flu like this:

-flu with anguish, aching and restlessness
-moderate to high fever
-chills especially from uncovering or draft (this is similar to BRYONIA)
-chilly and relieved by warm baths, applications or drinks (actually we know that Rhus tox is usually better with piping hot things)
-pains ameliorated by nearly constant movements

It is also a pneumonia remedy. Roger Morrison lists these symptoms:

-later stages of pneumonia with restlessness, anxiousness (ARSENICUM) and stupor (GELSEMIUM)
-physical restlessness with great aching
-sudden chills and fever in paroxysms
-cough worse cold
-thick mucous, sputum may be rusty

While there are more lung symptoms with COVID which are not described here but the ones that are described do fit. The flu symptoms certainly all fit. 

I showed my colleague Morrison's description and she said that 'anguish' really describes it well.

I normally use Rhus tox for arthritis (especially arthritis which is worse by eating nightshades) and for lyme disease. Rhus tox is poison ivy. I think that since lyme originates in the forest (via ticks), it's neat that the cure (for many people) is also from the forest.

Please, start using Rhus tox and let me know how it goes.  I was not able to give it to my colleague because I spoke with her after she had recovered.

To make an appointment with Dr. Wagner, call 360-433-2727

Sunday, April 19, 2020

Homeopathic Prophylaxis and Treatment of Epidemics/ GELS+BRYONIA

Homeopathic medicines have been used to treat epidemic diseases as well as been used as a prophylaxis during epidemics to avoid infection. 

The founder of homeopathy, Dr. Samuel Hahnemann, wrote about epidemic prophylaxis in the 6th Organon of the Healing Art (aphorism 73, footnote 73b). This idea was introduced during a time before vaccines were invented, therefore many M.D.s were open to using homeopathy as treatment and prophylaxis of epidemic disease.  Robert Dudgeon M.D., a founder of the Hahnemann hospital, wrote about the effective prophylactic treatment of 1646 children by 10 doctors. 123 of the children contracted scarlet fever which is an infection rate of under 1%. This is much lower than the rate of infection at that time which was as high as 90%. At that time Belladonna (in homeopathic dilution) was used for this prevention.

Homeopathic medicine  was used for the influenza epidemic of 1918. Mortality rate was generally 2.5% when treated with allopathic medicine, but those treated homeopathically had a mortality rate of 1.05% (History of the Treatment of Epidemics with Homeopathy by Julian Winston). 

For every flu circulating, homeopaths try to find the 'genus epidemicus' of that flu. That means they try to find the homeopathic remedy that can alleviate the specific symptoms common to the circulating flu. That is the reason this blog was started. Each flu has different symptoms--fever, headache, joint pain, nasal stuffiness, chills, etc. We can tally these symptoms in a number of people to find which remedy matches most of the cases we see.  Hahnemann said that the remedy found could be given to healthy individuals to prevent the flu.

To find the correct remedy for the circulating flu, patients are interviewed at length about their symptoms.  Doctors in Hong Kong have compiled a list of common symptoms amongst COVID19 positive patients then watched closely for positive effect of homeopathic given in office. (After listening to symptoms and choosing a remedy, the patient stayed in the office until a positive effect of the given remedy was seen).  The most common symptoms were slow manifistation of symptoms, chill, mind stupification, weakness, tickling cough, and pain in the bones. They found that these remedies were their top four effective remedies:

Eupatorium perfoliatum

The Gelsemium picture looked like this: chill and fatigue, mental fatigue, no thirst, headache like a band around the nead, tickling in the throat, cough with involuntary urination while coughing, cough worse at night, and all symptoms worse wet weather. This was the top remedy.

Bryonia follows Gelsemium well especially after suppressive medications such as Ibuprofen and Tylenol are given. Bryonia symptoms were increased thirst (especially for warm water), dry cough worse at night, desire to be alone, chest pain with cough, tickling in the throat worse when entering a warm room, throat pain and a catch in the breath with cough. Many people feel that Bryonia is the top remedy for COVID19.

Arsenicum symptoms were chill, diarrhea and vomiting, minimal cough, thirsty but nausea worse with drinking, nausea at the smell of food, symptoms aggravated when eating and drinking and nausea temporarily relieved by vomiting.

Eupatorium symptoms were fever, severe myalgia even to the point of the back feeling broken, mild cough, and thirstlessness. I have heard reports of severe body aches in people who treated themselves at home (ie: did not have to go to the hospital for shortness of breath).

So we can see that in different people there are different symptoms though many symptoms overlap. What does this mean for finding the genus epidemicus?
1. There are likely different strains of COVID19 circulating
2. There may be regional reactions to COVID19 based on air temperature and air quality, humidity or other factors
3. There may be differing reactions to COVID19 based on the predisposition of the individual. This predisposition could be based on genetics, lifestyle, and the level of something called the 'vital force'--which is thought to be the inherent life energy of an individual which is capable of bringing the body back to homeostasis. 
4. There may be 2 or more remedies for this flu because it is a complex flu.  Is there bacterial infection on top of the viral one? Many feel this must be the case because Azithromycin does seem to help people.

What the doctors in Hong Kong decided to do was recommend a combination of Gelsemium and Bryonia, both in 30c dose, to be taken as prophylaxis. It is estimated that 50% of the population in Macau, China used these as prophylaxis. Out of over 600,000 people there were only 10 local cases of COVID19. 

How often should one take these homeopathics as prevention? The common recommendation is to take one dose once weekly. When 2 remedies are suggested, one can take them alternating or combined into one remedy.

What strength should be used? This is debated amongst homeopaths and each individual has their favorite method of dosing homeopathics. Hahnemann tested out differing methods of dosing and in his later years gave doses in water rather than by pellets. This was thought to have a more gentle effect, especially when given as prophylaxis.

Can people get symptoms from taking a homeopathic prophylaxis? Yes. Similar to getting some flu symptoms from a flu vaccine, taking a homeopathic prophylactically can, in some people, create mild symptoms. Symptoms could be felt for a few hours to a couple of days for most people, although the majority of people will not note any symptoms from homeopathic prophylaxis at all. 

I have taken a homeopathic combination formula developed for bronchitis during this (COVID) time. Any time I have felt shortness of breath, I have taken it. It has always relieved symptoms within about five minutes. One week when I felt very exhausted, shaky and drained at the end of the day, I took Gelsemium twice and I felt better within a day. I am currently working on a homeopathic combination in liquid dose that should be effective for the symptoms we have seen with COVID19. I must note that I did get a nasopharyngeal COVID 19 test after 5 days of mild shortness of breath and the test was negative.  I will be taking the antibody test soon.

I also would like to note that most homeopaths believe that if someone has a 'constitutional remedy', that remedy should be taken as prophylaxis.  A constitutional remedy is a remedy which matches a person's constitution--or their typical weaknesses and recurring symptoms. Since the remedy brings the body back into balance or to a position of strength, their constitutional remedy has a good chance of helping them fight off an infection while remaining asymptomatic.

Stay tuned for the availability of our homeopathic flu prophylaxis for 2020.