The practice of homeopathy is evolving and advancing daily, thanks to the work of thousands of physicians, scientists, academics and laboratory personnel who push the limits of knowledge in order to improve the efficacy of these therapeutic medicines.
What is homeopathy?
Homeopathy is a system of medical practice that seeks to treat an illness, disease or chronic condition with minute doses of medicines derived from natural substances. This therapeutic method is based on the pharmacological principle of analogy or “like cures like.”
Manufacturing Video of Boiron Homeopathic Medicines
The Principle of Analogy
Formulated by Hippocrates, the principle of analogy establishes a link between the therapeutic action of a substance and its toxicological power. Homeopathic treatment involves administering small or infinitesimal doses of natural substances to restore the body to health. Such treatments would produce symptoms of illness if given in larger doses to a healthy individual.
The Infinitesimal: A Scientific Challenge
Under the principle of analogy, homeopathy uses the therapeutic effects of substances by attenuating their toxicity through the use of very small doses. Experience has shown that in spite of the very high dilution of the active ingredient, the therapeutic effect remains.
Although the understanding of homeopathy increases daily, the state of science does not yet allow us to account for the mode of action of infinitesimal dilutions. Homeopathy confirms that substances diluted beyond the known limits of matter possess the detectable, measurable, reproducible and specific biological or physical activity of the diluted substance—even though there isn’t the slightest trace of the substance. A great many hypotheses have been put forward to check this postulate; however, the infinitesimal currently remains a scientific challenge.
The Homeopathic Approach
Homeopathy is both a scientific and human therapeutic method, requiring physicians to, as always, listen to their patients, yet also be open to scientific and technical progress being made in the field of homeopathy. Homeopathy is based on the belief that only one medicine exists...that which combines scientific knowledge with careful listening and observation of the patient.
Inherent to holistic medicine, of which homeopathy is a part, is individualization of treatment for each patient. Physicians should apply, each time and in every case, their knowledge about the treatment and specificity of the patient and his or her illness or condition.
Individualization and Homeopathic Treatment
The choice of a homeopathic drug involves much more thorough and individualized treatment than that of conventional medicines such as antibiotics. Once the diagnosis is made and homeopathy is chosen as the treatment, the physician must then find the drug(s) that correspond(s) specifically to that particular disease or condition presented by his or her patient.
It's been said that each patient develops "his own" flu, "her own" sore throat, "his own" eczema, etc. The patient will develop symptoms and modalities that are personal and individual, so the physician must account for the individual in order to be able to select the most appropriate homeopathic treatment.
Generally, the homeopathic approach requires individualization of treatment; however, it should be noted that some homeopathic drugs are routinely used for certain symptoms or diseases (for example, symptoms of influenza), outside the principle of individualization. This gives rise to commercial products indicated for a treatment of symptoms across a spectrum of patients.