Aphorism 161 in Organon of Medicine – Homeopathic Aggravation

Samuel Hahnemann in sixth edition of Organon of Medicine stated:


“When I here limit the so-called homoeopathic aggravation, or rather the primary action of the homoeopathic medicine that seems to increase somewhat the symptoms of the original disease, to the first or few hours, this is certainly true with respect to diseases of a more acute character and of recent origin, but where medicines of long action have to combat a malady of, considerable or of very long standing, where no such apparent increase of the original disease ought to appear during treatment and it does not so appear if the accurately chosen medicine was given in proper small, gradually higher doses, each somewhat modified with renewed dynamization (ยง 247). Such increase of the original symptoms of a chronic disease can appear only at the end of treatment when the cure is almost or quite finished.”

What does Aphorism 161 convey?

Homeopathic remedies are selected on totality of symptoms in a case. When a similimum is administered to the patient based on this totality, the primary action of the medicine evokes a slight aggravation in first few hours in acute diseases after first dose of the remedy.

Why is the reason for homeopathic aggravation? Hahnemann derived that the origin of diseases is the life force which is dynamic. When a homeopathic remedy which is prepared through dynamization (potentisation) acts on this dynamic life force produces a mild intensification of the disease symptoms. It acts as a gentle stimuli on the life force usually not noticeable by the patient in case of acute diseases (aphorism 157-160).

Whereas in chronic diseases, Hahnemann says that the homeopathic aggravation appear only at the end when the cure is almost certain. This occurs only if the chosen remedy is accurate and given in small and modified doses.

Dr. K.C. Bhanja in his book ‘The Homeopathic Prescriber’ under chapter PRINCIPLES AND PHILOSOPHY OF HOMOEOPATHY have explained Aphorism 161 explicitly: ” As acute diseases are generally gently removed or annihilated by the appropriate remedy, you would seldom meet with what is called medicinal or homoeopathic aggravation.

When improvement ceases and no other drug is indicated by the changed symptoms, repeat the same medicine in the same potency. But as a rule, better do not venture to repeat it once more. It should be remembered that aggravation of the present and in some cases the past symptoms of a case after a few days and again on some of the following days, with tendency to gradual wearing off, is homeopathic aggravation and is virtually a sign of incipient cure.”

You can read the book ‘The Homeopathic Prescriber’ by Dr. K.C. Bhanja in Zomeo Homeopathic Software. This book is intended at the requirements of the students, laymen as well as the general practitioners.

Aphorism 161


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