Monday, January 25, 2010

Homeopathic System of Medicine: Not that Easy!

When one enters a homeopathic college out of choice, he or she knows that they are going to be the beholders of this wonderful science for the rest of their lives. Though in the initial period when the teachers try to imbibe the symptom similarity between drugs and diseases, everything seems to go tangent above the head. Truly homeopathy can be said as one of the most difficult sciences to perceive. Yes, this may sound funny to some who try to use homeopathy in day to day life for minor ailments. I have seen people without any degree those try to apply the mode of treatment for various maladies and are quite successful at times to get rid of the problem. But this is possible only for acute diseases most of the times unless the person does an in-depth study of the homeopathic system of medicine.

I am not against people who are learning homeopathy on their own to treat household ailments. But certainly I would advise all people to be careful while getting treated from these quick-learners. Because after 5 and ½ years of studies and 8 years of practice, I can say that we are students of homeopathy for life. Nobody can ever understand the system that has so many avenues and offshoots of therapy modules to the fullest. But those who have seriously studied the system in its entirety along with its application in clinical medicine are capable of applying it in practice better.

Necessity of Clinical Knowledge:

As we know, homeopathic medicines are given on the basis of characteristic symptoms of the disease. For example, if a girl gets nosebleed instead of her regular menses, then that becomes a characteristic symptom for that girl and medicine is based on that. If a person with jaundice instead of feeling nauseating feels like eating a lot without feeling of satiety, that’s the characteristic symptom for that individual and his medicine will be based on that.

But to comprehend these characteristic symptoms, one must first know what the common symptoms of the disease are. The signs and symptoms of the disease are studied in clinical medicine. A homeopathic doctor must be able to (or is able to if he has given ample attention in his clinical course during bachelors) examine his or her patient thoroughly with enough attention to inspection, palpation, percussion, and auscultation along with the characteristic symptoms of the disease. It means the work for a homeopathic doctor is doubled as compared to that of his friend in modern medicine.

No wonder in many countries, homeopathic medicine course is available only after one completes his graduation in medicine. The reason behind is same. Even if you are interested in the patient’s peculiar signs and symptoms more than diagnosis of the disease, you must know what the disease in background is and must be able to investigate accordingly before you proceed for actual prescription. Unless you know that low hemoglobin is the reason for dark circles around eyes, your homeopathic prescription without any iron supplement will not suffice the purpose.

I owe it to my teachers!

Try to utilize your education period in homeopathic college to the fullest to comprehend the basics of medicine along with homeopathic applications. By our immense fortune, we had had the best teachers in Dhondumama Sathe Homeopathic Medical College in Pune where I completed my graduation in Homeopathic medicine. We had the best of teachers like Dr Mangrulkar and Dr Patwardhan for basics of Anatomy and great homeopaths like Dr Sethia and Dr Solanki to form a grounded platform for our future endeavors. The hospital faculties like Dr Dhananjay Kelkar, Dr Amrutkar, and Dr Girish Godbole only made us stronger to face the clinical storms in future. Kelkar’s sir’s advice to spend maximum time in hospital instead of theory lectures helped us a lot to comprehend the various diagnostic findings in different cases.

When today I prescribe for a patient in rural parts of Karnataka and at the same time give medicines to an affluent patient from Florida, my faith in my homeopathic system of medicine boosts my confidence. There might be various off-shoots of Homeopathy those have cropped up and some homeopaths may differ in their opinions about different methods. But I consider it as a glory of homeopathy to be recognized by different schools of thought and still hold on to the eternal principle of “like cures like”!

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