A Case for High Potencies: Jonah and the Facial Cyst


Jonah was a 24 year old man who came to see me for a right-sided facial cyst.  He had previously been treated with homeopathy and had been pleased with the results, but after a couple of years, the cyst had started to grow again.  He tried to contact his homeopath but found that she had retired, and so he came to see me.

As with many people who have had homeopathic treatment, he didn’t know what remedy he had previously been given.  I always recommend to people that they take note of the remedy since one of the greatest indicators that a remedy will in the future is if it has worked for the person in the past.

I took Jonah’s case from the beginning, including all of the symptoms around his chief complaint, as well as his case history. His secondary complaint was anxiety, and this was made worse by the self-consciousness he experienced about the facial cyst.

Upon repertorizing the case, Thuja came up strong for Jonah, which may not be a surprise to anyone reading this who is familiar with homeopathy.   This remedy comes from the White Cedar plant which is commonly found in garden hedges in this part of the world.  It is really an invaluable part of our Materia Medica, having such a strong affinity for cysts and tumours in general.

I sent Jonah with a 30C potency in a dropper, to be taken daily.  He was enthusiastic when I suggested that I try to contact the previous homeopath to see which remedy she had given him.  I eventually got an email back from her indicating that she had also given Thuja—she in turn was very curious as to what I had prescribed and we shared a feeling of camaraderie in having seen Jonah’s case the same way.  This is one thing I love about practicing Hahnemannian, Classical Homeopathy is the consistency of the method between practitioners.  This was certainly not the first time that my prescription was the same as one given by a previous homeopath.

Jonah and I followed up a couple of months later as we wanted to give the medicine time to diminish the cyst.  He told me that there had been some initial improvement for the first few weeks both in the cyst and in his emotional state, and that even other people had commented on this.  When he took the remedy he would “feel instantly calm”. However, after some time, the cyst had begun to grow larger again.  At this point, I moved his prescription up in potency  to a 200C.

The second follow up was much the same as the first.  Some improvement, but it didn’t hold over time.   I went over his case again, asking lots of questions to make sure I wasn’t missing something – was this remedy really the Similimum?  Jonah was happy to provide more detail, and we discussed the emotional aspects of his case in great length.  His tendency toward anxiety was still quite pronounced and he opened up a bit more about the quality of the anxiety, and how it was worse in social situations.  Again, the conversation came back to his physical appearance and self-consciousness, feeling he needed to hide from others.  He still had a strong aversion to onions which is such a wonderful confirmatory symptom for Thuja.

Feeling we must still be on the right track with this remedy, I sent Jonah with a dry dose of Thuja 10M, to be take once weekly.  This high potency would allow us to really test this prescription as the higher one goes in potency, the better the remedy needs to fit the case in order to achieve improvement.

It was a few months before I heard back from Jonah, but when I did it was very good news.  He wrote to tell me that he hadn’t been in touch because things had been going so well.  He wanted me to know that the cyst had completely disappeared, and that the anxiety was much ameliorated too.  He was feeling on the whole, quite good.

It is often the case that we don’t hear much from the clients who are doing well, so I really appreciated Jonah sharing this good news with me.  For posterity’s sake, it was very important to note (and to share with you, the reader), the effect of the higher potency in this case.  Looking back in to the literature of homeopathy, we read a lot about the ability of higher potencies to effect a permanent cure. Certainly, Jonah’s case is a good illustration of this.  It is important to note, however, that we need to always be wary of patient sensitivity when prescribing a higher potency (or any potency for that matter), as well as ascertaining that the remedy is the best fit for the case at any given point in treatment.  In this case, the 10M was a straight forward path to amelioration; if only every case could be so clear.

To read more about the treatment of skin conditions, please visit my page on Skin Health.

Kerry Walker, Classical Homeopath





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