DISEASE CLASSIFICATION: PSORA, CONTINUED by H.A. Roberts
Symptoms of psoric manifestations….
*** PSORA has numerous sensations of vertigo. These are of many kinds and accompany all kinds of motion, and are often induced or aggravated by emotional disturbances. Hahnemann speaks of the vertigos of psora as being many and peculiar, brought on by walking, motion, looking up quickly, rising from sitting or lying; bilious vertigo, floating, from digestive disturbances, with specks before the eyes; desire to keep quiet by lying down, which better. In this desire to lie down and better by lying down we have the outstanding characteristic of the whole underlying condition.
There are sharp, severe, paroxysmal headaches which come on in the morning, increase as the sun rises and better when the sun goes down. These are usually frontal, temporal or parietal. The headaches with red face, throbbing, better by rest, quiet and sleep and better by hot applications are psoric.
The bilious nausea and vomiting, coming on at regular intervals, better from rest, quiet and sleep, are psoric.
The characteristic desire to lie down and be quiet is manifest in feverish children, who desire only to be let alone.
Psoric manifestations may be a link in almost all disease conditions, and they are always better by heat.
Psora alone never causes structural changes, and the psoric head is normal in size and contour. The hair and scalp are dry, rarely perspiring; the hair is lustreless and so dry that it cannot be combed without wetting the comb. The hair falls out after an illness. It becomes grey too early, or white in spots; it breaks and the ends split. The skin and scalp appear unclean, and there is much itching dandruff and dry eruptions on the scalp, either papular or eczematous, which itch. These eruptions are worse in the open air, worse evenings, better by scratching, but burning and smarting follow the scratching. These eruptions do not suppurate but dry down and become dead scales.
There are many eye symptoms, but since there are no structural changes under this uncomplicated stigma, we find no pathological changes. The symptoms all have to do with the functional relationships and are closely related to emotional disturbances. The psoric eye is intolerant of daylight or sunlight, and the symptoms are worse in the morning, from the rising of the sun to the zenith, and better by heat. There are spots before the eyes; this is a characteristic manifestation of this miasm, or stigma.
Ptosis of the lids is never psoric, but syphilitic. Red lids are a combination of the psoric and syphilitic in the tubercular diathesis.
The ear troubles, like the eye troubles, are functional or nervous. The appearance of the ear is normal; the ear is small or medium in size, and never transparent in appearance. There is no moisture in or about the ear, as with the other miasms. The auditory canal is dry and scaly. We rarely find an abscessed condition in the psoric ear. Since this stigma has such marked nervous reflexes, we expect to find the characteristic oversensitiveness to sounds.
The shape of the psoric face is that of an inverted pyramid, but the face and head do not perspire as does the syphilitic condition. Perspiration is characteristic also of the tubercular diathesis, but this is because of the syphilitic admixture with the psoric. The lips are red, often red to bluish, parched and dry. The usual feverish face in the psoric patient is red and hot and shining. There are the characteristic dry itching pimples and simple acne. The skin is naturally dry, with an unwashed appearance. Rushes of blood to the face or burning of hands or feet are psoric, as are hot flushes the climacteric.
In the nose also we find the oversensitiveness to odours; unusual odours awaken him from sleep; he cannot sleep where there are strong odours; perfumes make him feel ill and faint. There are painful boils or pimples on the septum, but on malignant manifestations.
Lupus of the nose is a manifestation of the combined stigmata, and closely allied to tuberculosis.
Sordes about the mouth are psoric manifestations. There is swelling and burning about the lips rather than fissures. There is thrush and stomatitis in the mouth. The psoric patient has many taste perversions; there is a bad taste in the mouth; or it may be sweet, bitter or sour; there is a regurgitation of the taste of foods; these patients are very sensitive to taste. While all the miasms, or stigmata, have many perversions of taste, psora is the only one which manifests the symptom of burnt taste.
Psora is always hungry; this miasm has desires and longings for many and various things. They are hungry even with the stomach full; they are never satisfied even while eating. They crave sweets, acids, sour things; in fevers they crave indigestible things. They long for travel, yet they are weak and debilitated; they long for things the system is wanting; they long for certain things, but when the want is gratified they do not want them. During pregnancy they long for peculiar things; yet after gestation they loath the things they have craved. Before bilious attacks they crave sweets, but the attack is not caused by the sweets they consume; rather the craving is a forerunner of the attack, a prodromal symptom.
There is a weak, gone feeling in the stomach in the middle of the forenoon; hunger at night also is a prominent symptom. These patients lack the power of assimilation, which is undoubtedly the cause of the continual craving, and is closely related to the characteristic gnawing in the stomach with sensations of heat and cold. There is a repugnance to boiled foods; they crave fried and highly seasoned foods, meats and greasy foods, but these do not suit. Meats stimulate the psoric patient and arouse the underlying condition to activity. In fevers they have an aversion to sweets and crave acids. The sense of fullness, gas, bloating, etc., are markedly psoric traits, and they are accompanied by heartburn and waterbrash. Most of the aggravations of psora occur after eating.
The cravings and longings are basic phenomena of great therapeutic value. A comparison of the desires of the stigmatic influences is of much help in selecting the remedy: psora desires hot foods; syphilis prefers cold food; sycosis wants the food either hot or cold. Psora desires meats, but the combination of psora and syphilis, in the tubercular diathesis, has an aversion to meats.
With the bloating of the psoric patient, he cannot endure the slightest touch on the abdomen; he fears even the slightest contact.
While pure psora does not produce any structural changes, psora does produce functional changes; these are manifest in the chest condition by the anaemic manifestations that have their effect on the duty of furnishing oxygen for the red blood cells. The emotional reaction of psora hampers the natural functions to such an extent that the functions are disturbed and the oxygen circulation feels the lack of the vitalizing influence.
The coughs of psora are dry, teasing, spasmodic and annoying. The expectoration is usually mucous, scanty, tasteless. The salty and sweetish taste of the expectoration are dependable indications of the combined psoric and syphilitic taints.
In the heart there are functional disturbances with violent rushes of blood to the chest, and a sensation of weakness, goneness or fullness about the heart. The sensation as of a band is psoric. This miasm, or stigma, manifests its reflex relationship of gastric or uterine irritations by marked palpitations or sensations as of hammering about the heart. With the heart symptoms there is always anxiety and fear on the part of the patient. The psoric patient always fears that he will die from heart trouble; but the psoric patient is the chronic who lives long and produces income for the physician, for he is the victim of so many unpleasant sensations that he requires much attention, and his habit of fixing his attention upon one or more organs as being the cause of his discomfort demands constant attendance from the physician. He does have many uncomfortable sensations, such as sharp cutting neuralgic pains about the heart. These patients think they are about to die and want to lie down and keep quiet, but there is no danger; it is the sycotic and syphilitic heart patients who die, and then suddenly and without warning. The psoric heart conditions are very much influenced by strong emotions, joy, grief, fear, and so on. These conditions are worse eating and drinking; there are palpitations and eructations of large amounts of gas; sometimes the pulsations of the heart will shake the whole body. The psoric patient is always conscious of his heart condition, and it is he who is constantly taking his own pulse.
Psora alone produces more marked anasarca and dropsical conditions than sycosis. The sycotic patient succumbs before the dropsical condition becomes marked; but the union of these two stigmata produces these conditions in a marked degree.
The abdomen feels full after eating; there is much distension, worse in the morning. The muscles are flabby, and all abdominal pains are better by heat.
The diarrhoeas of psora are often induced by overeating. The patient is always hungry and eats beyond his capacity and upsets his digestive powers. This overeating often produces a colic and watery diarrhoea, usually in the morning. These diarrhoeas fit the symptomatology of such remedies as *Aloe, *Podophyllum, and *Sulphur, among others.
In the tubercular diathesis there is also the morning worse of the diarrhoea, and the tubercular condition shows its psoric parentage by the worse from cold.
Psora has a spasmodic offensive and painless diarrhoea which usually better the suffering, but it is not a persistent diarrhoea; it comes on from emissions or from preparations for an unusual event; after taking cold; worse by cold; worse hot drinks or heat in general.
There is a stubborn, marked, persistent constipation, with small, hard, difficult stools and no desire for stool; or there may be alternation of the constipation and diarrhoea. With the constipation there are frequently accompanying troubles in other parts of the organism, or seemingly unrelated symptoms which are actually concomitants.
Psora is not only the mother of all diseases, but it is the psoric element which gives the valuable concomitant symptoms and furnishes the modalities and sensations which are a true expression of their sufferings. The psoric patients suffer considerably, probably much more than in the other stigmata, and with less apparent cause.
In children afflicted with this underlying condition we find retention of the urine whenever the body gets chilled, and this condition arises in old people also. An opposite indication of the psoric stigma is the involuntary urination when sneezing, coughing or laughing. There is smarting and burning on urination, but not from pathological causes.
Many symptoms of this stigma are reflected in the sexual sphere, especially in women. In other words, these are functional disturbances closely related to the emotions, and dysmenorrhoea, amenorrhoea, and many other conditions result. Hahnemann tells us that grief or sorrow, such as that caused by an unhappy marriage, will produce more serious and distressing symptoms in the psoric patient than the most unfavourable surroundings or real hard- ships. It can be seen that there would be a marked reaction on the functions which are so closely related to the nervous system.
The psoric skin is dry, rough, dirty or unhealthy appearing. In fact, the classic psoric remedy is *Sulphur, although it is not to be thought that *Sulphur will cure all cases nor is it limited in its range of applicability to psoric conditions; but if there is any one remedy which we may limit by saying that it is the picture of a stigma, we may truly say that psora and *Sulphur are so like each other, in many instances, that each typifies the other. In appearance, the psoric patients are the “great unwashed”; bathing is unwelcome and worse the roughness of the skin and the irritability.
In all psoric conditions, itching is a persistent symptom. There is very little suppuration; there may be a few vesicles or a papular manifestation. Psoric eruptions are not noticeable by their colour, but by the roughness of the skin. Unless there is marked inflammation they are the same colour as the skin. With the dry skin, there is a decided tendency for fine, thin scales; the eruptions dry down and scale off.
Erysipelatous manifestations are a combination of psora and sycosis.
If there is any syphilitic taint in combination with the psoric base, the patients are very apt to be susceptible to impetigo, for this is the soil in which impetigo flourishes; without these united taints a patient will not become infected with impetigo.
The psoric patient has the symptom of coldness associated with even slight ailments; with headaches there is a deadly coldness that is almost worse than the headache itself, and this is much worse by continued effort and better by lying down where it is warm and quiet.
Modern medicine tells us that migraine has as its under lying cause emotional disturbances. In other words this is a verification of Hahnemann’s teaching on the disturbances roused in the psoric patient by grief, sorrow or other harrowing emotions.
It kills the psoric patient to stand still; he must walk instead of standing even if he is on his feet but a brief time He may stand if he can lean against anything sufficiently to take the weight off his feet. This is not because of structural changes; it is because of his natural desire to rest, with his characteristic restlessness. Weakness of the ankle joints is a sure indication of the presence of a syphilitic taint in combination with the psoric stigma.