A number of homeopathic prophylactic (preventive) remedies have been conveyed to me today through kind-hearted, well-intentioned friends / acquaintances / colleagues, locally and internationally. The public also enthusiastically requested preventive remedies. As a practitioner based in Hong Kong with patients and students in Hong Kong and Taiwan, I would like to examine some relevant basic homeopathic principles.
Homeopathic treatment for epidemics does work, and work marvellously in many historically incidences since Hahnemann's time in the 1800s. The most renowned one being the 1918 Flu epidemic where the US homeopaths achieved about 1% mortality rate vs conventional physicians' 30% for flu, homeopaths 2% vs conventional physicians' ~60% for pneumonia. (refer to comment section for the link.) However, for a homeoprophylactic remedy to be effective, there are certain conditions:
1. The homeopaths have treated a reasonable number of *local* cases, and treated *effectively* with a *single* remedy in a *significantly* large percentage of the cases. Then we can recommend the *same single* remedy to the same *local* community as a preventive remedy.
2. *Local* means the same remedy from its treatment community for the same community to apply prevention. Hong Kong is not Wuhan. Taiwan is not Wuhan.
3. Same virus does not indicate a homeoprophylactic remedy. Homeopathy is about the similarity of symptomatology in its totality of the patients to that of the remedy. Patient symptomatology is the individual expression of an infection. Some epidemics have a highly consistent symptomatology, and we can find a single homeoprophylactic remedy. Unfortunately, some do not. It's about the individual symptomatology in totality, not the pathogen, nor the pathology or conventional diagnosis.
4. Wuhan had a cold, damp, rainy, foggy winter, with limited sunshine. Not Hong Kong, not Taiwan. If, unfortunately, we have an outbreak in Hong Kong, Taiwan, or elsewhere, traceable to a Wuhan origin or not, we do not foresee the same symptomatology. That's also the experience in India today, where endemics are common, and neighbouring cities or villages affected by the same virus may be helped with different remedies.
5. At this stage, any suggestion of homeoprophylactic remedy for Hong Kong or Taiwan community based on symptom picture from Wuhan is mere speculation.
6. We understand that people may want some preventive remedy. However, we are at this stage unable to suggest any prudent choices.
These entries are very broad ones. We need individual symptoms. Because the picture of each individual is unique, and we need individualized treatment.
I have also devised a Flu-like symptom case-taking checklist (in Chinese) for patients / practitioner on request. This is not a 'therapeutics' / prescriber / remedy suggestion. Simply a checklist of over a hundred things lest we forget to look into.
8. General health advice for the Spring? Wash your hands, wear your mask when necessary, avoid crowded areas, uphold personal and public hygiene. Eat only moderately (don't overeat). Avoid sugary / cold foods, and fried foods. Don't kill. Get up early in the morning Gentle exercise in the sunshine (we expect in a few days). Use dehumidifier for the office / home and smudge (with sage, artemisia, cedar powder, etc.)