HomeopathyA very ancient principle The principles of homeopathy
- A very ancient principle
- The precursors
- CS Hahnemann
- Homeopathy in Italy
- Homeopathy in the world
- Current luck of homeopathy
- The principles of homeopathy
A very ancient principle
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Homeopathy is a discipline based on the principle of similitude: similia similibus curentur (the like should be treated with the similar). This principle was already known among the Babylonian, Egyptian and Greek civilizations, which inserted it into a magical-religious concept aimed at establishing a link between life and death. It is also the foundation of ancient Indian and Chinese medicines, based on the correlation between the organs of the body and the five elements (for the Indians, air, water, fire, earth, ether; for the Chinese, wood, fire, earth, metal, water ). Only with Hippocrates of Cos (458-370 BC), however, the principle of similarity begins to be understood in rational rather than magical-religious terms: in Corpus Hippocraticum we read then that "the disease is produced by similar elements and, by administering the like to the patient, he returns from illness to health, so what produces non-real stranguria cures true stranguria and fever is suppressed with what produces it and produced with what suppresses it ", while in Epidemics, another treatise attributed to Hippocrates, the author speaks of the white hellebore as a substance capable of healing a cholera morbus, but also of provoking it, and states that “there is another way in which diseases are formed. Sometimes they come from what is similar to them and the same things that caused evil heal it. " In these affirmations a sort of "pre-homeopathy" could be recognized, and this hypothesis is strengthened when one considers how hippocratism is based on a humoral conception of the disease, which sees the latter as a consequence of the imbalance of the four humors of the body (phlegm, blood, yellow bile and black bile), related to the four fundamental elements postulated by the Greek philosopher Empedocles (water, air, fire and earth).
It will then be Galen (130-200), physician of the emperor Marcus Aurelius, to bring down from the conception of the four elements that of the four temperaments (phlegmatic, sanguine, bilious, melancholic).
Galen, to whom the paternity of the contrariais contrariis curentur principle has been erroneously attributed (the opposites should be treated with the opposites), distinguished two categories of remedies: the holy ones, which bring moods back to the initial harmony, and harsh ones, which free the body (through evacuations) from excess moods; furthermore, by examining the symptoms, Galen went to research the sick organ and in this way laid the foundations for modern medicine.
Even Paracelsus, for his depth of thought, can be considered a precursor of homeopathy: in the middle of the Renaissance, he discovered a new correlation between man, his disease and the universe, and in the Paragrano (posthumous work published in Frankfurt in 1565) wrote that “nature is disease itself and therefore it only knows what disease is. It alone is medicine, it knows the infirmities of the sick ".
Although the concept of similitude has accompanied the entire history of medicine, homeopathy as a real discipline will only come to light at the end of the eighteenth century, thanks to the German doctor Christian Friedrich Samuel Hanemann.
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Christian Friedrich Samuel Hahnemann was born in Messen, Saxony, on April 10, 1755. Son of a porcelain decorator and intended for commercial activity, he showed a profound inclination to study from childhood. Until the age of 12, Samuel attended the Latin Franciscan school; later (from 15 to 20 years) the princely high school of Sant'Afra, which only the local nobles could access, accepted his enrollment without making him pay the tuition. In this school the young Samuel studied, in addition to Latin and Greek, also several foreign languages, and this knowledge was later put into practice with the translation of numerous medical and chemical texts of the time. In the spring of 1775 Hahnemann enrolled in the Leipzig Medical School, which however included only theoretical teaching chairs: up to this point, therefore, the young man's medical knowledge was theoretical rather than practical, and for this reason in 1777 Hahnemann he went to Vienna, where, at that time, the New Medical School of Von Swieten flourished, based on the observation of the patient and his symptoms.
In Vienna, for a period of about six months, Hahnemann accompanied Joseph Quarin (1733-1814) on his visits to the Hospital of the Brothers of Mercy, of which he was primary: Hahnemann had the privilege of attending his consultations and thus, to acquire professional knowledge based on the direct examination of the patient. On 10 August 1779 he graduated in medicine in Erlagen, Bavaria, discussing the thesis Evaluation of the etiology and therapy of spastic diseases. The treatise clearly shows the influence of the so-called nervous theory, supported among others by Robert Whytt (1714-1766), a professor in Edinburgh, and by his direct pupil and successor to the William Cullen chair (1710-1790): the theory affirms that it is the nerves and the soul, with their sensitivity, that control the functions of the organism, and in this way tries to explain the concepts of nervous constitution and predisposition to disease and to understand how drugs work. Another important reference in Hahnemann's thesis is the medicine of observation practiced by Thomas Sydenham (1624-1689) and derived from the method of classification of botanists: Sydenham argued that the definition and knowledge of the disease are carried out through careful observation ( based on the testimony of the senses and called experience) of all the symptoms necessary to describe a complete anamnesis. As can be seen, the thought of the young Hahnemann already contains the foundations of homeopathy as a discipline, since it admits the existence of a correlation between external changes (symptoms) and internal ones and, therefore, with the disease itself.
In the ten years following his graduation, Hahnemann established himself as a doctor and developed a great interest in chemistry. Thanks to this interest he met the pharmacist Haescler, of whom he married his daughter, Henriette (from whom he had eleven children) in 1782, and began to publish articles in numerous magazines in the sector. The publication of medical works such as the Treaty on prejudices against heating with coal (1787) and the Treaty of venereal diseases (1789), in which Hahnemann, taking up the nervous theory of Whytt, also introduces the concept of predisposition individual subject to external stimuli (i.e. constitution). From this concept descend the notions of nervous predisposition and weak constitution of the nerves, according to which the action of the drug does not derive from its direct effect but from the ability to produce specific stimulation, even in small doses, on a sensitive subject.
Hahnemann's definitive departure from traditional medicine is almost upon us, and to better understand the reasons it is useful to dwell also on the complex historical period he is going through: we are in fact in the eighteenth century, a century dominated by the Enlightenment in France and the Aufklarung ( dominion of reason) by Emanuel Kant (1724-1804) in German countries, but where the movement of the Sturm und Drang (storm and assault) was born, which in total antithesis to the Aufklarung and anticipating the German romantic revolution, enhances the values of the individual versus those of universality; in this sense it could be said that Hahnemann is the son of his time, individualistic in research and rational in method.
1790 is the date of the first statement of the principle of similitude, and from this moment Hahnemann will abandon forever the profession of allopathic doctor. The German doctor's departure from traditional medicine was gradual and above all marked by a profound awareness of the inadequacy and inefficiency of traditional methods. In a booklet addressed to Professor Hufeland he wrote that "eight years of practice exercised with the utmost care had already made me aware of the nullity of common healing methods …". The new way was therefore born from the need to find a different therapeutic system, based on in-depth research and experience. The fundamental requirement was to identify the medicines suitable for the different "morbid states" and this, according to Hahnemann, could only occur by observing the way the medicines acted on the human body in a healthy condition: only the changes and the morbid states caused on the healthy man, since they manifested themselves in their specific clinical expression, could in fact be observed without preconceptions.
The formulation of the principle of similitude, the foundation of homeopathy, derives from this idea of verification: medicines can only heal diseases similar to those that they have the ability to cause in healthy humans.
This statement came to light as Hahnemann translated Cullen's Readings on Medical into German, inserting numerous comments in the note. In the chapter dedicated to cinchona Cullen, listing the properties of cinchona bark, spoke of his hypothetical invigorating action on the stomach: this explanation did not convince Hahnemann, who decided to personally absorb many drachmas of cinchona peel, to judge the effects in healthy man, and thus experienced the symptoms of a feverish state similar to that for which the bark was normally used, malaria. He then wrote all his observations in several notes added to the translation, among which the most important is "the Peruvian bark which is used as an intermittent fever drug acts because it can produce symptoms similar to those of intermittent fever in healthy humans" .
Hahnemann then continued his experiments and in 1796 published his first essay on homeopathic theory in the Journal of Practical Medicine of Hufeland, Essay on a new principle, in which he generalized his hypotheses and observations transforming them into a universal principle. The work is divided into two parts: in the first, theoretical, Hahnemann enunciates the new principle of similitude, in the second he cites all the examples of effective treatments based on this principle with demonstrations coming from his personal experience. Meanwhile, on May 14 of the same year, the doctor Edoardo Jenner practiced the first anti-violent vaccination, demonstrating to the world the effectiveness of the application of the law of similitude in the prophylaxis of infectious diseases.
From 1796 onwards Hahnemann worked solely in this direction, publishing various articles. Even his private life was completely disrupted by the new path he took: he left Leipzig without work and moved with the whole family more than fifteen times in thirteen years; until 1804, the year in which he moved to Torgau and began to carry out regular medical activity, his economic resources came exclusively from the fertile translation activity. In 1810 Hahnemann published the first edition of his most important work, Organon of rational medicine: in the 271 paragraphs and 222 pages of the book he expounds his beliefs about disease, drugs and therapy, formulating for the first time in a way fulfilled his doctrine. The first edition of the book will be followed by another four, entitled Organon, of the art of healing and published between 1819 and 1833; a sixth, posthumous, edition will instead be published in 1921 by Haehl. In 1811 Hahnemann also published the first volume of the Pure Materia medica, in which the results of the experimentation of 77 substances on the healthy man are reported.
1828 marked an important change within the homeopathic doctrine: in the volume Chronic diseases, their particular cure and their homeopathic cure in fact Hahnemann, analyzing the chronic character of some diseases, introduced the notion of "miasma" to explain recurrences . The term miasma (derives from the Greek and means "filth, contamination") was used by Hahnemann in a completely new meaning, that is in the sense of a disorder of the organism, intrinsic to the individual reality, responsible for the onset of the disease and its to maintain and develop despite the treatments, both allopathic and homeopathic. The formulation of this concept was inspired by the fact that, especially in chronic diseases, homeopathic medicines very often failed to produce complete healing or produced intermittent healings, followed by relapses during which the disease recurred in a slightly different form but with the same symptoms, which it was never possible to eradicate satisfactorily. Hahnemann then wondered why the application of the law of the like was effective for acute diseases but not for chronic ones, and after years of incessant research he came to the conclusion that in the latter homeopathy can not be limited to addressing from time to time the symptom that presents itself, as if it were a disease in itself and limited, but must instead consider it as the fragment of an original disease, much deeper and more rooted in the organism. Following this reasoning, Hahnemann thus postulated the existence of three diatheses of miasmatic origin, that is, pathogenic forces intrinsic to the individual that determine their constitution and predisposition to the disease: these diatheses are the psora, in which the pathologies of the organism tend to hypofunction (functional disorders), sicosis, in which they tend to hyperfunction (proliferative disorders) and lue, in which the body's diseases are dysfunctional (destructive disorders).
Thanks to the constant research on homeopathy, Hahnemann obtained, in June 1812, the chair of Homeopathy at the University of Leipzig, and in this way he began to have the first students. The university teaching ended in 1820 due to the conflict created with the city pharmacists, who sued him in court on charges of personally preparing and distributing his drugs. Having lost the cause, he sought refuge in Kothen, in 1821, just when his first students began to spread homeopathic doctrine: in 1829 the first association of homeopathic doctors was founded in Leipzig. Widowed in 1830, Hahnemann married a second time in 1835 with the young Melania and moved to Paris, the city where he began a brilliant medical and cultural activity: his Parisian home became in this period a sort of literary lounge, beacon of the culture and homeopathic medicine. Hahnemann died on July 22, 1843, at the age of 88, due to chronic bronchitis.
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Homeopathy in Italy
The spread of homeopathy in Italy occurred by the Austrian troops, called in 1821 by King Ferdinand I to quell the unrest and riots going on in the Kingdom of Naples: many military doctors of the Austrian army that presided over northern Italy, in fact, officially practiced homeopathy, and Charles Philip, prince of Schwarzenberg and Austrian field marshal, had been a patient of Hahnemann.
An important factor of diffusion of the new therapeutic method was the opening of a specialized hospital center (in which free consultations and medicaments were offered) in Naples by Dr. Necker di Melnik, German military doctor: a group gathered around his figure doctors that included Francesco Romani, who became the closest collaborator of the German doctor and translated Hahnemann's works into Italian, and Cosmo De Horatiis, personal doctor of King Francis I and founder of the homeopathic clinic of the Military Hospital of the Trinity.
The fortune of homeopathy was also determined by an exceptional event: the recovery of Marshal Radezky. The marshal, who had been suffering for some time from a tumor in his right eye, had turned to the best specialists of the time obtaining a poor prognosis, but once he entered the treatment by Dr. Hartung, homeopath, he recovered completely in six weeks: this miraculous healing was worth to the doctor the fame and minting, in 1843, of a gold medal in his honor.
Thanks also to the various factors listed above, homeopathy experienced great fortune in Italy between 1830 and 1860 and spread to Campania, Piedmont, Lombardy, Lazio, Sicily and Umbria: in 1834 there were 500 homeopathic doctors in Italy, of which 300 only in Sicily. In this region homeopathy was exercised for the first time by Dr. Tranchina, who had learned it in Naples in 1829, and it spread very quickly due to the presence of doctors who came with the Austrian troops: they distinguished themselves, among the other, for the service provided during a dysentery epidemic in Mondanice and a cholera epidemic in Palermo. The fortune of homeopathy in Sicily was such that in 1862 a homeopathic conduct was established in Montedoro.
Due to its non-invasive characteristics, homeopathy has met with the favor of the Vatican and Catholic movements since its appearance in Italy, and many popes (including Gregory XVI, Leo XII, Leo XIII, Pius VIII, Pius IX and Pius XII) turned to it successfully after having tried unsuccessfully the traditional treatments: in 1841, after having carefully documented himself on the new therapeutic method, Gregory XVI authorized the homeopathic doctor Wahle, of Leipzig, to exercise homeopathy in the Papal States; the following year he granted him and his colleagues the right to distribute free remedies to the sick and subsequently, with a papal bull, gave the ecclesiastics the authorization to administer homeopathic remedies in urgent cases, in the absence of the doctor, in all locations without medicines. Many homeopathic doctors, both Italian and foreign, were rewarded with honors by the popes: among them, Settimio Centamori, Ettore Mengozzi and Francesco Talianini, the doctor responsible for introducing homeopathy in the Papal States and one of the first Italian homeopaths. Talianini's professional activity was crowned by famous healings, such as that of Leo XIII and the marquise Vittoria Mosca of Pesaro, and recognized by the Vatican with the awarding of a gold medal.
The second half of the nineteenth century marks the beginning, for homeopathy, of a phase of decline that will last for many decades. This phenomenon certainly depends on the affirmation of the new ideals of materialism and on the historical-cultural context in which the unity of Italy matures: in this sense the Hahnemannian discipline will be too tied to the Vatican and popular Catholic movements. The new cultural climate, in fact, is marked by hostility towards the Church and ecclesiastical hierarchies, and homeopathy pays the price for the deployment. The progress of allopathic medicine, with the discoveries of Koch and Pasteur and the birth of microbiology also contribute to the decline of Hahnemannian practice in Italy: the identification and therefore the introduction of a cause of diseases external to man, the microbial agent, in fact, revolutionizes the concept of treatment, which according to the new conception can only take place by removing the agent responsible for the disease through opposition and contrast. Homeopathy will become popular again in Italy in the twentieth century.
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Homeopathy in the world
The spread of homeopathy in Europe and in the world has certainly been favored by the successes obtained since the first periods of its application, in particular during wartime events, major epidemics and other catastrophes of the nineteenth century: for example in 1831, following a cholera epidemic, it was established that 4% of the patients treated with homeopathic care had died, while in the case of allopathic treatment the percentage of deaths was 59%; in 1854, during another cholera epidemic that hit London, the House of Commons announced that the percentage of deaths in homeopathic hospitals was 16.4% against 59.2 in conventional hospitals.
Hahnemann's homeland has given birth to generations of great homeopaths, who have interpreted and developed the law of similars significantly, and among whom at least Griesselich and Reckeweg must be mentioned.
Philip Wilhelm Ludwig Griesselich (1804-1848), an allopathic doctor and a great lover of botany, approached homeopathy in 1828 and developed its theories in an original way, trying to integrate them with notions of physiology, anatomy, pathology and chemistry; he was responsible for the foundation of the Baden Homeopathic Society, whose dissemination body was the magazine Hygea since 1834.
Hans Heinrich Reckeweg (1905-1985) instead inaugurated the new era of German homeopathy by founding homotoxicology, a sort of bridge between homeopathy and allopathy whose cornerstones are contained in Homotoxins and homotoxicosis. Bases for a synthesis of medicine, work published by him in 1955. Homotoxicology studies the toxic or poisonous factors for humans (homotoxins) and believes that they develop following chemical transformations. The accumulation of homotoxins within the body is the cause of the disease, which can be eradicated only through the natural elimination of the toxins themselves, and therefore the pathology constitutes a defensive response of the organism to the aggression of the toxins through which this tries to make them harmless and expel them. This expulsion route slowly restores toxin elimination and leads to healing.
Although military invasions were the main vehicle for spreading homeopathy in this country, it should not be forgotten that Hahnemann was already known there for having studied medicine at the University of Vienna following Dr. Joseph Quarin. In the past homeopathy was practiced openly by the population and was very well established and widespread even among military doctors; among others, Charles Philip, Prince of Schwatzenberger and Austrian Field Marshal, who was also a patient of Hahnemann, resorted to homeopathic medicine.
In Spain homeopathy was introduced by a wealthy merchant from Cadiz, who in 1824 had been treated by Hahnemann and subsequently by the Italian doctor De Horatiis. The new therapeutic practice met with great approval mainly thanks to Dr. Lopez Pinciano, who in 1835 translated the Organon, and to Juan Nunez, homeopath, who in 1847 was appointed doctor of the Royal House of Spain. In 1830 the first homeopathic hospital was opened in Badajoz, followed in 1878 by the San José hospital in Madrid.
In Russia, homeopathy met with moderate success in the first half of the nineteenth century, and Tsar Alexander I himself resorted to this type of treatment. The Russian army doctor Nicolaievitch Korzakov, who prepared the remedies for the tsar, not having the bottles necessary for all the dilutions available in the military campaigns, introduced the use of only one bottle, and from this practice the term Korzakovian dilution was born .
Homeopathy spread in the United Kingdom thanks to Frederick Hervey Foster Quin (1799-1878), who had learned it in Naples from Romani and De Horatiis: doctor of the Duchess of Devonshire and subsequently of Prince Leopold of Saxecoburg (future king of the Belgium), Quin personally met Hahnemann in Koeten and in 1826 translated the Organon; he also founded the first homeopathic hospital in Europe in London in 1849 (in 1948, thanks to the Crown doctor Sir John Weir, the structure was renamed Royal London Homeopathic Hospital). Even today, this hospital and the Faculty of Homeopathy attached to it are the fulcrum of clinical activity and homeopathic research not only in England, but also in Europe and in the world.
Paul Curie (Pierre's grandfather) also gave great impetus to the spread and development of homeopathic medicine in the country: from 1835 until his death he practiced the profession of homeopath in London, also founding the Hahnemann hospital and the first English homeopathic society.
Homeopathy has experienced a great development in France: the discipline was included in the curriculum of some universities and, in 1965, homeopathic remedies were introduced into the Official Pharmacopoeia.
It was an Italian, the Neapolitan count Sebastiano De Guidi (1769-1863), who introduced this practice to France. De Guidi became passionate about the new method of treatment and, after deepening his knowledge (first in Naples following Romani himself, then in Koethen with Hahnemann), he returned to Lyon in 1830. Here he began to use homeopathy and became the first homeopathic doctor from France, practicing his profession until his death, at the age of 94.
Among De Guidi's students there are illustrious doctors, whose work has been important for the development of homeopathy in France.
George Henri Gottleib Jahr (1800-1875), a contemporary of Hahnemann, taught pure medical subjects at the Homeopathic University of Paris. In his masterful Principles and rules that must guide in the practice of homeopathy (1857), he underlines the need to individualize the patient on the basis of the characteristic psychic and general symptoms, and to treat these symptoms with high dilution remedies. During his intense activity Jahr was particularly interested in the application of the principle of similitude in the care of babies and menopausal women, and wrote in 1855 the Homeopathic Treatment of female and newborn diseases.
Benoit Mure (1809-1858) stood out for his eclecticism and intelligence. He approached homeopathy receiving De Guidi's treatment for pulmonary tuberculosis and, after studying homeopathy in Naples, he traveled around the world to spread the new method: in 1837 he founded a homeopathic surgery in Palermo (which would later become the Royal Academy of Homeopathic Medicine), in 1839 he created the Institut Homeopathique de France and two dispensaries in Paris, then in 1840 he went to Brazil, where in just 8 years he founded 22 homeopathic dispensaries and a homeopathic school (in Rio de Janeiro) . Mure wrote several works in various languages.
Jean Pierre Gallavardin (1825-1898) also dedicated his life to homeopathy and practiced in Lyon from 1855 until his death. Acute clinical, he insisted on the fundamental importance of psychic symptoms in the choice of remedy and on the indispensable need for high dilutions in the therapy of mental states. Gallavardin's work continued even after his death thanks to the activity of one of his ten children, Jules, also a homeopath. The latter founded the homeopathic hospital of Saint-Luc and created the monthly magazine Le propagateur de l'omeopathie. In 1937 he established the Societé Rhodanienne d'Homeopathie together with Antoine Nebel, Henry Duprat and others.
While all over Europe homeopathy spread through Hahnemann and his followers, in the United States it was imported by the Dutchman Hans Burch Gram, who emigrated to the New World in 1825; the true father of American homeopathy, the one who began to apply and disclose it, is however considered the Saxon doctor Constantine Hering (1800-1880). Moving to Philadelphia in 1833, Hering founded the North American Academy for Homeopathic Healing in 1835 in Allentown, together with his colleague Wesselhoft, and later, in 1848, Hahnemann Medical College in Philadelphia, where he taught Materia Medical until 1869.
The interpretation of homeopathy provided by Hering, known as the Hering law or the law of healing, constitutes the main reworking of the original Hahnemanian doctrine, and postulates that "every healing begins from the inside and proceeds outwards, from the head towards the bass, and in reverse order of how the symptoms of the disease appeared. " According to Hering, therefore, in true healings the patient, after the administration of the correct remedies, does not reach a state of well-being in a casual way, but following a path marked by a very precise law of elimination of symptoms: those that appeared last will regress first, those of more remote origin will regress last.
Another illustrious representative of the American homeopathic medical class is James Tyler Kent (1849-1916). Kent was born as an allopathic doctor and then completely converted to homeopathy, so much so that in 1879 he refused the offer of an anatomy chair by the Association of Eclectic National Medicine; two years later, however, he accepted a professorship in the same discipline at Homeopathic Medical College of Missouri, and in 1883 he was appointed professor of medical mathematics and rector of Post-Graduate's School of Homeopathy at Hahnemann Medical College in Philadelphia; at the same time he became a professor of Materia Medica at the Hering Medical College and Hospital in Chicago.
For his incessant practical, didactic and research activity on the principle of similarity, Kent is considered one of the greatest exponents of the homeopathic school in the United States: in his interpretation he attributed extreme importance to mental symptoms and to characteristic, peculiar, physical symptoms. Kent's main literary contributions to homeopathy (Homeopathic philosophy, the Repertoire of symptoms and Materia medica) are still the texts most consulted by homeopathic doctors all over the world; also on the subject of contributions to homeopathic medical literature provided by Americans, the monumental Pure Materia medica, compiled by Thimothy Field Allen, also deserves to be mentioned.
Homeopathy was very successful in the United States and statistics indicate that from 1829 to 1869 the number of homeopaths in New York doubled every five years. Among these many were women, and in 1848 the Faculty of Female Homeopathic Medicine was founded, the first medical university in the world for women only. In 1844 the American Institute of Homeopathy was born, the first American medical society, to which women were admitted in 1877.
In 1898 the US Commission on Education wrote that three of the four major medical school libraries were homeopathic.
Homeopathy was also widespread in South America. In Argentina it was even introduced by the national hero, general José de San Martin (1778-1850), who during the campaign for the liberation of Peru and Chile from the Spanish domination brought with him a kit of homeopathic medicines.
Subsequently, the Hahnemannian discipline experienced great flowering thanks to Dr. Thomas Pablo Paschero (1904-1986). Graduating in medicine and specializing in gynecology, Paschero, who regularly practiced allopathy, saw a case of eczema deemed incurable resolved with homeopathic treatments.
In 1934 he went to the United States to deepen his research on homeopathy and in Chicago he became a disciple of Dr. Grimmer, who in turn had been a pupil of Kent. Having completely abandoned the allopathic path, Paschero founded the Escuela Medica Homeopathica Argentina in 1970, which is still active, and from 1972 to 1975 he was president of the Liga Medicorum Homeopathica Internationalis (LMHI), making a great contribution to the development of homeopathic discipline with his research; among others, Dr. Eugenio Federico Candegabe, a founding member of the Escuela Medica Argentina, was trained at the Paschero school.
Homeopathy has also met with great favor in Mexico, where it was made official in 1898 and still boasts a great tradition today. Illustrious representative of the Mexican homeopathic school was Dr. Proceso Sanchez Ortega (1919-2005), who studied in depth the Hahnemannian theory of miasms.
In Brazil homeopathy spread in 1840 thanks to Benoit Mure, who created the Homeopathic Institute of Brazil in 1843 and in 1844, in Rio de Janeiro, a homeopathic school; a few years later, the school obtained official authorization to issue doctoral degrees in homeopathic medicine. The great fortune of homeopathy in Brazil is testified, again in the twentieth century, by the flowering of at least 10 homeopathic schools.
Asia and Africa
In India, homeopathic doctrine was introduced by Mahatma Gandhi, who claimed that "it heals more people than any other treatment", and by Mother Teresa of Calcutta.
Due to its particular effectiveness in the treatment of epidemics and infectious, acute and chronic diseases, homeopathy has also spread to other Asian countries, such as Pakistan, Sri Lanka, as well as southern Africa and Nigeria.
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Current luck of homeopathy
Since the end of the nineteenth century, the Hahnemannian discipline has experienced alternating phases of success and decline everywhere, for a number of reasons, but primarily because traditional medicine has lost the "brutality" it had in Hahnemann's time and began in several cases to also accept homeopathic remedies. Other important factors that hindered or slowed down the spread of homeopathy were the antagonism of pharmaceutical companies and the poor economic attractiveness of the practice: in its conception of the disease, homeopathic practice requires more time for the patient to visit.
Despite the difficulties, however, homeopathy still continues its journey in the world today. In some states, such as Mexico and Argentina, homeopathic doctrine is officially recognized also from a legislative point of view. France, England and Germany, in addition to hosting various homeopathic schools, companies and hospitals, have included the Hahnemannian remedy in their Official Pharmacopoeias. Entire homeopathic hospitals exist in the United States. Even in Italy, in recent years, there has been a considerable spread of homeopathy, which, in its constant affirmation, fully claims the name of complementary medicine.
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