From Healing the Eye the Natural Way: Alternate Medicine and Macular Degeneration
Edward C. Kondrot, MD
North Atlantic Publishing, 2001
In this chapter I will introduce you to one of the most dynamic and easy-to-use methods of total healing – homeopathy. By total healing, I mean that homeopathy can heal your mental attitude, emotional state, as well as your physical disease. I have seen it work absolute wonders for my patients regardless of their eye condition. For those with macular degeneration, it offers hope for great improvement in vision as well as in transforming one’s attitude about the condition. Patients with ARMD who have taken a homeopathic remedy not only notice improved vision but they report being calmer, more peaceful, less irritable, and able to enjoy the normal activities of life fully. They no longer focus on how their condition limits them, but feel restored to a sense of gratitude for all that life offers. It is with a deep sense of commitment to this form of healing that I speak to you about homeopathy.
What is Homeopathy?
Homeopathy is a natural system of healing based on the principle that ‘like cures like.’ This means that the symptoms of a disease resemble the symptoms that might be brought on in a health person who took a particular herb or other substance. One good example is with the remedy mercury. If a healthy person took mercury and endured mercury poisoning, they would experience tremors, excessive salivation, and an exquisite sensitivity to temperature change. If a sick person, perhaps someone with the flu, exhibits these symptoms, they would likely be cured if they took homeopathic mercury. In another example, we can look at how women in the past century took a little of the plant ‘‘belladonna’’(it means pretty lady) in order to bring color to their cheeks and brightness to their eyes. Belladonna happens to be the homeopathic remedy one would think of using if a person had a fever accompanied by a bright red face and glistening eyes.
While this is the underlying principle of homeopathy, it does not tell us how it works. In fact, we don’t’ know how it works. Homeopathic remedies, in addition to matching the person’s symptoms, are made from minute doses of the substance used to heal those symptoms. The doses are so tiny that, at some strength, the substance cannot even be detected in a chemical analysis of the remedy. And these strengths, called the high potencies, are the most powerful in their ability to heal! Some feel that homeopathy is a type of energy medicine- one that works on the non-material levels of the person. Others feel that we cannot measure the substance because our instruments are not that subtle yet. Regardless of how it works, the important thing for me and for you too is to know that it does work.
Homeopathic remedies are made from plants, animals, and minerals. Belladonna is an example of a plant remedy, while mercury is an example of a metal source. Most animal remedies are made from insects, snake venom, or the milk of mammals. There are about 3000 remedies. The key to success in homeopathy is selecting the correct remedy. While it is true that about three dozen remedies cover a wide variety of illnesses and will help a large number of people, it is still important to consider all the remedies when prescribing for a case. Remedies come in two forms. The dry form, or pellets, consists of small sugar pills taken by mouth under the tongue. This form is very easy and pleasant to take. Equally pleasant, but a little more complex is taking a liquid form of the remedy. These are prescribed by homeopaths, and, if you should need one, he or she will give you instructions. Unlike prescription or even over-the-counter drugs, remedies are taken for a short time only. In fact, you may only need one dose of a remedy to have a profound healing response. This is because of the way remedies work
Remedies come in different strengths, called potencies. These cover a very wide range of strengths. The remedies available in health food stores are in the low to low-mid range in potency. Higher potencies, which are almost always needed to heal a serious chronic or degenerative condition, are available only by prescription through homeopaths. Although I do not suggest that you try to self treat your ARMD, I do suggest that you go to a health food store and look at the section with homeopathic remedies. You will probably see several types of remedies. One type may be labeled according to a disease or conditions, such as “arthritis” or “sinus” or “indigestion.” These may be either tablets or tinctures which are liquid forms. They will contain a number of remedies, and, thus, are called combination remedies. I consider these somewhat useful for people to get acquainted with homeopathy, but they do not in any way represent the full power of homeopathy.
Most likely you will also see some single remedies with unfamiliar names. These are likely to be packaged in small tubes. Inside are tiny white pellets. These are the most familiar and frequently used homeopathic remedies. People with some experience and knowledge of homeopathy use these to treat themselves, their families, and their pets. Although I strongly advise you to consult a skilled homeopathic practitioner to treat your ARMD, you may find these remedies useful for other conditions.
How do Remedies Work
Homeopathic remedies work to stimulate your now vital force, or immune response, to heal your illness. Although they are taken in a form that resembles regular medicine, they are completely different. For example if you had a bacterial infection such as a strep throat, the antibiotics you might take would actually kill the germs that caused the infection. However, if you were to take a homeopathic remedy for that same condition, the remedy would stimulate your immune system to overcome the germs. And it would do this without causing any side effects whatsoever.
Another way remedies differ from regular medicine is in their timing. Many prescription s drugs need to accumulate in your system before they can affect it. Anti-depressants are one example. A person often needs to take an anti-depressant for several weeks before it has any effect. In homeopathy, there is no such thing as a cumulative effect. You can take one dose of a remedy and have an immediate effect. Or you can take one dose and have an effect several days or weeks later without taking any more doses. This is because the remedy works deeply in your system to mobilize your own healing forces. People who have been seriously ill and/or ill for a long time may require a longer period before they notice a response to a remedy. They may also require a repeated dose in a few months’ time. A homeopath will carefully Observe your response to the remedy and determine the potency and frequency of repetition.
The Power of Homeopathy
One of the reasons why I have dedicated so much of my life and my practice to homeopathy is because of its power. It can cure disease states at every level of seriousness. For example, it is very effective in what we call ‘acute’ illness. This means short term intense diseases like flue, fever, pneumonia, and some injuries. It is also highly effective in curing chronic illness such as asthma, arthritis, lupus, and eye conditions. It can help where conventional medicine has nothing to offer besides powerful medications like steroids that do so much harm to the body while they relieve symptoms. It is also excellent at resolving deep emotional states such as anxiety, unexpressed or lingering grief, and depression. Mental/emotional disorders like panic attacks and attention deficit disorder respond beautifully. Even when people have terminal illness and organ changes that make it impossible for them to recover, homeopathy relieve their pain as well as bring peace to their final days.
One dramatic story is the apparent reversal of a very severe and acute condition called central retinal arterial occlusion. Dr. Sobhendranath Datta, a radiologist from Louisiana, was attending a conference in my city when he was struck with what he called a “blackout in the left eye.” His vision was better in the dark and very poor in light. He consulted me on an emergency basis, and I was able to prescribe a homeopathic remedy that restored his vision to 20/30. When he visited his doctor for a follow-up, the doctor said he had never seen this condition occlusion improve like that. ‘He told me that, without homeopathic treatment, I would have lost sight in that eye. I got my vision back 100 percent with homeopathic medicine. This is a miracle. I am very grateful to Dr. Kondrot. I am blessed indeed.’
The Origin of Homeopathy
You may be wondering where this powerful healing system originated. You may also be wondering why it is not used more often and accepted as part of standard medicine. Samuel Hahnemann (1754-1840?) who was born in Germany is considered the father of homeopathy. While it is based on ancient healing systems as well as folk knowledge and herbal medicine, many aspects of it are entirely his original contribution. The idea of using a minute dose was never applied so effectively or systematically before Hahnemann. It is interesting to note that many modern doctors are using fractional or small doses of chemotherapy in place of the massive doses formerly given. And this is having very good results without the debilitating side effects.
Hahnemann was trained as a medical doctor, but was appalled at the harm done by the standard practices of the time. For example, many patients died from mercury poisoning and blood letting. On the other hand, simple folk remedies, while they did no harm, were not powerful enough to cure serious diseases. He set about finding a new system and applied his considerable intellect and scientific training to do so. By the time of his death in the mid nineteenth century, homeopathy had spread throughout Europe, to North and South America, and to Asia. At the turn of the century about half of US medical schools trained homeopathic doctors. Homeopathy had its demise in the US as a result of the growth of the pharmaceutical companies. There is virtually no opportunity to make large profits in the manufacture of homeopathic remedies. Homeopathy also did not lend itself to standardized research for a number of reasons. So, with the growth in power of conventional medicine, homeopathy went ‘underground’ until its rebirth about twenty-five years ago. There are now many fine training programs operating in the US as well as abroad and the number of qualified homeopaths is increasing yearly.
Choosing a Homeopath
Many people purport to practice homeopathy, but , in my opinion, only some of these people are qualified to do so. I am going to give you guidelines to use in selecting a homeopath if you decide to do so. A homeopath may or may not be trained in another medical profession. Some homeopaths are MDs, some are chiropractors, midwives, and acupuncturists. Some are simply trained as homeopaths. What you should look for is a classically trained homeopath who is certified by the Council for Homeopathic Certification and uses the letters CCH after their name. These individuals have passed a test that indicates the high level of their competence. They have also met the Council’s rigorous standard with respect to their education.
The National Center for Homeopathy maintains a list of practicing homeopaths throughout the US. This organization makes no claims about the competence of those it lists, but is a good place to start if you do not know how to find a homeopath in your area. The phone number is listed at the end of this chapter. Finally you can visit the website of the Hahnemann College of Homeopathy which maintains a list of its graduates. I can vouch for the quality of their training since that is where I received mine.
A Homeopathic Consultation
A visit to a homeopath is quite different than an appointment with a regular doctor. First of all, the homeopath will be interested in many things about you that an ordinary doctor would ignore. Homeopaths consider the way that you think, feel, look, as well as how your particular illness affects you as part of the symptoms that will help them find the correct remedy for you. To a homeopath, everything about a person expresses who they are and what medicine they might need. For example, your tendency to be warm or chilly as well as food preferences are important in understanding your case. Even if a homeopath saw three people with ARMD in one day, they would focus on the unique aspects of each person’s situation. One person might be quite passive in accepting their diagnosis while another might be very anxious. One person might fear that their eye condition was a sign of other underlying disease, while another might feel grateful that they had only an eye condition. Similarly, one person might have insomnia or anxiety at night while another sleeps soundly but awakens with a headache almost every day. All of these distinctions would be important to the homeopath. Along with these characteristics, the homeopath might ask about your childhood and your dreams.
Many people report that their visit to a homeopath is one of the most enjoyable experiences they have had. The visit usually takes from one to two hours and is conducted in an atmosphere free of judgment. The homeopath’s focus is completely on the client and on anything he or she wants to discuss. There is no pressure to discuss things that make the client uncomfortable.
Shortly after the visit, the homeopath will prescribe a remedy and will tell the client how to obtain it. The next appointment will probably be in four to six weeks. At that time the homeopath will assess how well the remedy has worked. He or she may or may not make a new prescription at that time. In terms of expectations, it is important for patients to know that long term chronic conditions may take a while to resolve fully. A rule of thumb is that a month is required to heal a person for each year they have had the disease. All the while the remedy is working deeply, however, and the person’s underlying state is being strengthened.
One of my patients illustrates the mind/body effect of homeopathy very well. He is a young man who has had retinitis pigmentosis since he was a boy. He is both artistic and athletic and his diminished peripheral vision makes it difficult for him to enjoy these activities. He is a loner by nature, but would like to have more satisfying relationships. When I first saw him, I was aware of a deep sadness about him, although he was quite unemotional in the consultation. As he opened up, however, I discovered that he was quite depressed, and was preoccupied with thoughts of death.
I prescribed a remedy that is well known to help people release grief and other strong emotions when they are held in. Since his prescription he has had many dreams with emotional content. He has also decided that he wants more satisfying social contacts and had developed a lot of insight into how he sabotages possibilities in these areas. He is less moody, more active, and more interested in pursuing other lifestyle changes that will improve his vision.
Homeopathy and ARMD
I have treated many patients who have ARMD with homeopathy. And I recommend that after proper nutrition and vitamin therapy patients immediately begin homeopathic treatment. Many patients will notice an immediate improvement of vision; others will notice a slow improvement over several months. Most patients will experience an improvement of the well being and outlook. Many other ailments, such as arthritis, will also improve will under homeopathic treatment.
There is a long history of treating eye conditions with homeopathy. For about 70 years, from 180 to 1940, the College of the New York Ophthalmic Hospital offered post graduate courses in homeopathic ophthalmology. During this period, there was one medical specialty society devoted to homeopathy and ophthalmology and two journals published in the US. From 1970 to 1916, twelve major works on the homeopathic treatment of eye diseases were published. Many cases were published in the literature of the time, showing improvement in a variety of eye diseases. These were all the more remarkable since there were no other treatments available at the time for serious eye disorders. Because this is still true with macular degeneration, homeopathy is a vitally important part of therapy for this condition.
I urge you to consider homeopathic treatment along with implementing the lifestyle changes described in the earlier chapters of this book. Homeopathy is also compatible with chelation therapy and micro current stimulation. You can do all of these to give yourself a comprehensive healing experience as well as maximize your chance to reverse your ARMD.
National Center for Homeopathy – referral to homeopaths throughout the nation
(70 548-7790; www.homeopathic.org)
Homeopathic Educational Resources: request their catalog of books on homeopathy.
Hahnemann College: of Homeopathy: for a list of their graduates