We are struck by the vehemence of influenza epidemics over the
past few years. The flu bugs seem to hit hard, heavy, and long. Many of our
patients, as well as practitioners, complain of persistent, debilitating flus,
sometimes even recurring more than once in a given season. These flus seem to
have a variety of presentations, some upper respiratory, others gastro-
intestinal, and a third type with predominantly musculoskeletal components. A
fever may or may not be present. Homeopathy can bring dramatic, and often
rapid, relief to flu sufferers as the following cases illustrate. (Remember
that the numbers in parentheses indicate the clarity, intensity, and
spontaneity of the symptoms, ranging from one to three.)
George, 61, called just before Christmas, in terrible distress. He was a
patient of another homeopath for whom we were covering, but sounded so
miserable that we had him come into the office rather than just doing a brief
phone consultation. George looked awful. He was very weak
(3), and it was obviously difficult for him to climb the flight of stairs to
our office He complained of a recurrent fever with chills over the past ten
days (3). His fever, about 102F, would begin at 5 or 6 p.m. and last until
about 4 a.m. He was extremely confused (2), which was quite unusual for him. He
had no appetite (3) and had lost twenty pounds (3). He also had persistent
diarrhea (2). All he wanted to do was lie down (3). He had absolutely no energy
for or interest in anything (3). He felt he was going downhill rapidly and was
very worried. So was his partner, who brought him in.
Gabriel, five, came to our house with his mom who needed to pick something
up. She was
very concerned about Gabriel, who had a fever up to 103F for the past three
days. He complained of a stiff neck (2) and headache. Gabriel was curled up on
the couch in his mother's lap (3), nearly lifeless (3). His eyes were mostly
open, but he had no enthusiasm or reactivity. All he wanted to do for the
previous three days was sleep (3). He was not overly thirsty. His body felt
tired and achey (2).
Del, age 43, had a tendency to recurrent flus of an upper respiratory
nature. She would develop a very dry cough (2) with soreness in the chest (2)
and a sore throat (2). Her mouth would become extremely dry "like mothballs",
and she would crave large amounts of cold water (3). Her lips would feel very
chapped. She would experience some chills (2). During these episodes, she
became extremely irritable (3), nearly biting people's heads off.
Jill, 39, was a jock. She was an avid runner and skiier and nothing kept
her down. Or, at least nothing but a stubborn flu. She came in complaining of
muscle stiffness(2) and achiness (2), especially her legs and back. She got
sick after walking in the rain the day before. It had been a chilly day. All
she wanted to do was soak in a hot bath. This was not the normal Jill!
Merrill, 35, came in to the office because of an intense sleepiness (2),
accompanied by a nagging nausea for the past two weeks. She was sure she was
not pregnant. She had some diz-ziness on raising her head, but no motion
sickness. This was the extent of Merrill's symptoms.
When we asked if there were any particular sensitivity to tobacco smoke, she
remarked that, yes, she had been much more easily bothered by it over the past
ten days or so.
So, how can we help these poor suffering flu victims with homeopathy?
Study the cases individually and then turn to page ____ to find out what we