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Endometriosis and its Management using Homeopathy.

Endometriosis is the name given to a disorder characterised by the deposition of endometrial tissue outside its usual place in the uterine cavity. Sufferers of this condition may have endometrial tissue appearing on the fallopian tubes, ovaries or areas of previous scarring: the pelvic area generally, or in the peritoneal cavity. In these areas the condition can behave as it does in the uterus, shedding blood and cellular material at the onset of menstruation and creating localised inflammation and adhesions. This can lead to symptoms including dysmenorrhoea, pelvic pain, painful coition, heavy periods and infertility.

The condition primarily affects women from the age of 25 to 39 years (although it has been noted in younger women) and has an average incidence of one in every ten women in this age range. Risk factors include a familial history of the condition, possibly prior use of Clomiphine, and the use of intrauterine devices (IUDs).

Orthodox medical therapies for endometriosis generally revolve around hormonal manipulation and these provide variable results. Surgery confined to the areas of extra-uterine endometrial tissue may also be offered and may initially provide some relief but periods of remission are limited. Full or partial hysterectomy is also carried out in some cases and this is often successful, although requiring careful post-surgical management with hormone replacement.

Homeopathy can provide significant relief of the symptoms of endometriosis and while homeopathic constitutional treatment of this problem may provide the most sustained relief, a number of authorities in this area have identified remedies that are potentially homeopathic to the condition itself, (1, 2 3 4 5 6, 7) and I've found it interesting how often these remedies have come up in my own clinic for the sufferers of endometriosis.

APIS MELLIFICA

The endometriosis signs and symptoms that are consistent with the proving and clinical symptoms for Apis include dysmenorrhoea and tenderness over the abdomen and uterine region. Acute right-sided ovarian pain of a stinging nature may also be seen here and this is often aggravated by coition. There may be bearing-down pain or a feeling of weight or heaviness in the right ovarian region. Menses are brief, often only lasting for one day, but are profuse or scanty and are often accompanied by light-headedness. In general, those who benefit from Apis are often of a weepy, irritable, fidgety or nervous nature and have little or no thirst. Symptoms are worse from the slightest touch or pressure or the heat of a room and may be improved by cold air, motion or uncovering.

CACTUS GRANDIFLORUS

Dysmenorrhoea is a prominent feature here. Feelings of constriction in the uterine area may be reported, as may a pulsating pain or sensation in the uterus and ovaries. The menses have a lumpy consistency and the flow ceases on lying down. Feelings of constriction are a common theme here and these may be aggravated by the slightest contact. Symptoms are worse on the left side, on lying down, from noise, light or fasting and are better in the open air.

CAULOPHYLLUM THALICTROIDES

The person who may be helped by Caulophyllum may have a history of miscarriage due to uterine debility. There may be dysmenorrhoea with debility, and paroxysmal but intense shooting pain across the lower abdomen and extending into the groin. The menses are often profuse. The mental state here has been described as nervous and fretful, with irritability and easily aroused displeasure. Symptoms are worse from open air, coffee or suppressed menses.

COCCULUS INDICUS

Cocculus is said to correspond to a sensitive and romantic nature, but one that is easily angered and doesn't tolerate contradiction. In regard to endometriosis, spasmodic, colicky, weakening dysmenorrhoea with a profuse flow of dark, clotted menses, often of early onset, may signal the need for this remedy. Other indicative signs and symptoms may include a pressing pain in the uterine region, a debilitating leucorrhoea between menses and a history of motion sickness. Symptoms are often worse from being in a moving vehicle, from a lack of sleep, mental excitement, and at menses, and are better from sitting or lying on the side.

FOLLICULINUM

Often thought of as a remedy for PMS, Folliculinum is a remedy made from the ovarian follicle and is a relatively recent addition to the homeopathic armamentarium. The signs and symptoms that can indicate a need for it include menses that are prolonged and consist of bright and clotted blood. Dysmenorrhoea may be present for the first few days of the period, and may be accompanied by a feeling of uterine congestion. A yellow brown leucorrhoea may be noticed between the menses and the patient may have a history of emotional instability. Symptoms here are usually worse before the onset of menses and better from fresh air.

HYDRASTIS CANADENSIS

The signs and symptoms that may be seen here include menorrhagia with a profuse, stringy, acrid viscid yellow leucorrhoea after the menstrual flow has subsided. Metrorrhagia and pain during coition may also indicate a need for Hydrastis. A history of depression and/or forgetfulness may also be noted. Symptoms are often worse from cold or open air, dry winds, touch or motion and may be better from pressure.

LACHESIS MUTA

Lower abdominal pain and pain felt in the left ovary, both of which may be noticed prior to the onset of menses and stop at the onset of menses, are indicators for the use of this remedy. The menses themselves may be briefer and scantier than they should be. Pains in the sacrum and coccyx, particularly when rising from a sitting position, as well as flushes of heat, may be present. Characteristic of the Lachesis picture is a rambling and at times erratic loquacity, a suspicious nature, and a history of depression. Symptoms may be worse after sleep, hot drinks, a warm bath, pressure or constriction, and better from warm applications and the onset of, and during, menses.

PALLADIUM METALLICUM

Palladium is often indicated where there is shooting or burning pain in the area of the right ovary and possibly backache. Menorrhagia may accompany these problems, as may a bearing-down pain which is improved by rubbing. A history of uterine prolapse or retroversion is often noted in these instances and there may be a yellowish, slimy, viscid. leucorrhoea occurring before and after menses. Mentally, the observer may note the ease with which the sufferer takes offence and also the need for approval. There may be a history of easily wounded pride. Symptoms are worse from social interaction, standing, during and after exertion, and may be better from touch, pressure and after sleep.

SEPIA

Often hailed as the great female reproductive remedy, the pointers to Sepia in this instance include a bearing-down sensation. There may be a yellow-green leucorrhoea accompanied by a localised feeling of stinging or burning, and painful coition. Menses may either be early and profuse or late and scanty. The mental symptoms that may further point to Sepia include anger, irritability (especially over trifling matters), sadness, poor memory, an indifference to others that would not normally be shown, and a propensity to cry when relating symptoms. The symptoms themselves are often worse during the afternoon and evening and from cold air. Symptoms may be improved by exercise, violent motion, warmth, pressure and after sleep.

REFERENCES

* Rai Bahadur Bishambur Das Select Your Remedy, 14th Edition, May 1992, B Jain, New Delhi, India.

* Clarke JH, A Clinical Repertory to the Dictionary of the Materia Medica. Health Sciences Press, England, 1979. ISBN 0 85032 061 5.

* Dewey WA, Practical Homoeopathic Therapeutics, 2nd Edition, B Jain. New Delhi, 1991.

* Bouko Levy M. Homeopathic and Drainage Repertory, Editions Similia. France, 1992. ISBN-2-904928-70-7.

* Raue CG, Special Pathology and Diagnostics with Therapeutic Hints, 4th Edition, 1896, B Jain, New Delhi.

* Kalvin KB, Repertory of Hering's Guiding Symptoms of our Materia Medica. 1997, B Jain, New Delhi. ISBN 81-7021-241-3

* Lilienthal S, Homoeopathic Therapeutics, 3rd edition, 1890, Indian Books and Periodicals. ISBN 81-7021-000-3

Robert Medhurst BNat, DHom, DBM, DNutr

Robert Medhurst is a naturopath practising in the Adelaide Hills in South Australia. Robert was formerly the Expert Advisor on Homeopathy to the TGA. He specialises in homeopathy and is the author of The Business of Healing. For more information see www.adelaidehillsnaturopath.com.au.
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Author:Medhurst, Robert
Publication:Journal of the Australian Traditional-Medicine Society
Article Type:Report
Geographic Code:8AUST
Date:Sep 1, 2012
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