Homeopathy 2015; 104(01): 66
DOI: 10.1016/j.homp.2014.09.003
Book Review
Copyright © The Faculty of Homeopathy 2014

The Concordant Clinical Homeopathic Repertory

Moira McGuigan

Verantwortlicher Herausgeber dieser Rubrik:
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Received24. September 2014

11. Dezember 2017 (online)

Robert Medhurst
920 pages, Printed and bound by Lightning Source, 2013,
ISBN 978-0-9580798-2-2, Price: £115.

The author, Robert Medhurst, states that his book is a repertory that will provide ‘competent guidance towards the remedies that have had consistent and reliable clinical confirmation for specific clinical conditions’. He also indicates that the methodology used to undertake provings, especially many of the earlier provings in the homeopathic literature, often leaves a lot to be desired and that this leads to great difficulty in finding the similimum for a particular patient.

The book concentrates on disease-specific remedies and points out that many practitioners responsible for the development of homeopathy criticised their use as it did not follow Hahnemann’s guiding principle of individualised treatment. However, the author is aiming the book at professional homeopathic practitioners and states that ‘so-called specifics in homeopathy should only be used within the paradigm of orthodox homeopathy’ pointing out that Hahnemann, Kent and Boenninghausen often used disease-specific remedies in their clinical practice. The tables give a vast number of recommendations for specifics to be considered as possibilities along with other remedies that have been arrived at by repertorisation.

He provides a system of tables with suggested remedies for specific clinical conditions produced using data from 28 authors. There are tables for 3200 clinical conditions, each indicating the degree of concordance or agreement between these authors on what is a reliable homeopathic remedy for the condition stated.

The book is very large and heavy and contains only eleven pages of text but 870 pages of tables. Certainly a lot of time and effort has gone into researching and compiling the rubric tables. However the huge number of very similar tables can be overwhelming at first. The author ‘avoids using data sources accessible through Macrep and Radar’ to avoid duplication and relies on data that is ‘less than mainstream’. Twenty seven books are used as source material, eight being general homeopathy books for self-medication and domestic use. He also gives recommendations from his own clinical practice, from in-vitro trials and animal and human clinical trials where available.

The tables are placed alphabetically according to specific diseases or symptoms but there is no organisation of the tables into different body systems. For example tables for Enuresis, Eosinophilia, Epidermolysis and Epididymitis sit side by side.

Unfortunately the book suffers from poor spelling throughout, starting with the first sentence of the Introduction where the word ‘curentur’ is misspelt ‘curantur’ in Samuel Hahnemann’s simile principle, similia similibus curentur.

I decided to use the book along with repertorisation to analyse a few patients who had a number of very specific clinical symptoms.

I ran into problems straight away. Stammering was found on page 734 between Stupor and Stye instead of on page 716 after Squint and before Staphyloma. The unusual alphabetical order was confirmed in the index. The index also had discrepancies. ‘Ailments from Fruit, Over-ripe’ came after ‘Acne, facial ‘and before ‘Acne, forehead’ in the index pages.

The concordance tables are laid out with one table for each clinical condition. Recommended remedies are placed along the top row. Numbers down the far left column each indicate one of 27 authors whose remedy recommendations are recorded along that particular row. Robert Medhurst’s own data, if cited, is given author number 28 on each table and row 29 gives information from clinical trials, if available.

If any of the authors has indicated one of the remedies in the top row an X is placed where his row and the remedy column intersect. There is a system of grading each X to denote the strength of recommendation by that author, standard X, bold X, underlined, bold X and italicised underlined bold X, in ascending order of strength.

Clinical conditions that have a lot of remedies indicated by many authors appear as large grids of X’s that can be difficult to look at and it is necessary to refer to the introduction to put names to the numbers in the author column. There are also some very small tables of limited value e.g. the table with the heading ‘Ailments from Stimulants (wine, coffee, tea etc.)’ has only one remedy, Nux vomica, recommended by five authors.

The author points out that a particular position in the table does not indicate that one remedy is better than another but only the degree of concordance. All remedies in the table should be considered when looking at a case, matching them to the totality of the symptoms expressed by the patient. The tables only provide recommendations for specifics that should be considered along with remedies arrived at by repertorisation and with adherence to standard homeopathic principles and practice.

We all use and value specific remedies for first aid homeopathy and some professional homeopaths may find the data in this book a useful addition to repertorisation. Unfortunately, I found that the layout, size and the weight of the book limit its usefulness.