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Case Study


Learn a remedy through cases - Kali-carb
Compiled by:
T K Kasiviswanathan

Every author I read said Kali-carb is a difficult remedy to study.

  1. Dr Kent opens his lecture saying "The Kali-carb patient is a hard patient to study and the remedy itself is a hard one to study". Then adds: "It is not used as often as it should be for the reason that it is very complex and ever-changing. It has a great many opposite symptoms, changing symptoms and thus it is related to patients that withhold their symptoms and have many vague symptoms."
  2. George Vithoulkas echoes similar sentiments; says that the primary image of the patient is not readily available from the provings. As a result one does not easily spot Kali-carb in the clinic and tends to prescribe other similar remedies, when Kali-carb was all along indicated and would have cured the case.

    Vithoulkas goes on to say that Kali-carb has a distinctive personality; committed dogmatically to a strong sense of duty to an inflexible, rigid degree. His mind maintains tight control over experience, behaviour and emotions; he sees the world in terms of black and white, right and wrong, proper and improper. He will be stoic, uncomplaining, and dogmatic. To such a person, life seems solid, clear and immutable. They will be found in professions where routine, properness and sense of duty are valued, such as policemen, prosecuting attorneys and accountants.
    They are conservative, loyal, moral, proper, rigid, unable to break even a trivial rule; dogmatic and dislike changes.
  3. Dr Roger Morrison alludes to a case of a government inspector of pharmacies in the early days when Vithoulkas was trying to practice Homoeopathy in Greece. The Head of the Pharmacy department wanted to close down Vithoulkas's homoeopathic practice stating that it was placebo. But the inspector was a Kali-carb and stickler for rules and regulations and hence fair. He said that he would inspect his pharmacies and decide. He also sent his sister, who was suffering from migraine for treatment to test the efficacy of Homoeopathy and Vithoulkas cured her. He was convinced and despite tremendous pressure from his superiors, did not change his report. He was harassed to no extent during his entire career as a result of which he developed hemiplegia (which Kali-carb patients are prone to, says Dr Morrison) and Vithoulkas treated him. Dr Morrison says that these are the people who do not allow such pressure, finally resulting in breakdown of the body.

    It is also said that it is difficult to spot a Kali-carb patient in the clinic. He will come for treatment only at a late serious stage, as they stoically tend to ignore their problems. During consultations he will be closed and may not give the symptoms especially their intensity. The very symptoms which mean most to a Homoeopath, the emotional and mentals, are the ones the Kali-carb patient downplays the most. "He is overly mentalised"

    He may appear to others as devoid of emotions because emotion is expressed in a mentalised way (Vithoulkas) ie predominated by intellect. When one reads the provings of Hahnemann and Allen, Kali-carb patient has lots of fears and delusions; fear of being alone, of impending disease, of death, of ghosts, of people, poverty etc. The delusions haunt day and night and are equally strange- of an abyss behind him; body is hollow; sees dead persons, devils, hideous faces, ghosts, spirits; as if he was about to die.

    Kali-carb because of his fear to be alone, constantly wants company. Rubric -wants to be carried. He has antagonism against himself as the provings show (like Anac, Sepia, Aur and Lac-c). The prover records: he does not know what he wants and is irritable, discontented and dissatisfied; consolation and kind words aggravate. She demands impetuously; is not satisfied with anything; is beside herself, and furiously angry, if everything does not go according to her wishes, and often does not herself know what she really wants. Variable moods; morose, cross, fretful, peevish with ill-humor. Rubric disappointed in love though not to the degree of Nat-mur. Aversion to husband and family members (Sepia). Quarrelsome with his family and which may account for treating those giving him company including his family outrageously (single remedy rubric). Kali is one remedy which has equally strong overt and covert anxiety. - so sleep is unrefreshing; they do not fall asleep easily and generally have an aggravation around 2 or 3 am. The rubric - dwells on past disagreeable occurrences, which may delay sleep.

    There is of course the danger of missing the remedy if one carries and looks for the above familiar image of the remedy in all the patients he sees. Dr Ian Watson, in a brilliant write-up on this remedy, (as reproduced by Dr K S Srinivasan in his Quarterly Digest) gives an illustrative case where the mentals were radically opposite of the familiar image portrayed in the Materia Medica texts, confirming Dr Kent's observations.

Case 1: Dr Watson. PMS
A 46 year old woman consulted Dr Watson for her PMS. She was well-dressed, very open, extrovert and loquacious; she worried about her family and her own health.

Aching pains in legs, worse lying down.
Insomnia - awake around 3am and unable to get back to sleep thereafter.
Great exhaustion from emotional tightrope walking with frequent mood swings. Recurrent lumbar backache after childbirth 15 years ago with a postnatal history of depression. Difficult 2 pregnancies; first child was a forceps.
Chilly, sweats easily especially at night in bed.
Frequent urination around 3-4 am; sore, bruised, stitching pain in the liver region.
Great sleepiness during dinner (peculiar to Kali-carb). .Flatulence3 with pale stools.

Dr Watson could see clearly the symptoms of Lyco, Ars-alb and Phos but none of them covered the case fully and he also noted some keynotes suggesting Kali-carb. The mental make-up of the patient was not consistent with the usual image of Kali-carb.

He, therefore, repertorised the case from Phatak's repertory:
P 229 - Menses before agg as eliminating rubric.
P 232 - Menses early.
P 276 - Pregnancy, childbed, affections of, or since agg
P 217 - Liver
P 360 - Time 3am agg;
P 46 - Changing moods
Kali-carb was the only remedy appearing in all these rubrics (KV: My repertorisation using Hompath gave 6/13 marks for Kali-c followed by Nux-vom, Lach, Puls).

Kali-carb 30 C - one dose, which aggravated her symptoms for 3 weeks. Depressed3, lot of pain in liver region; a number of her old symptoms came back. Eventually after 3 wks, disappeared and for the first time she felt better; her periods became regular and PMS symptoms vanished. The improvement lasted for 3 months. 2nd dose given when some of her symptoms returned and she was well for almost a year. Again one dose required. Since then she has remained well.

Dr Watson's Study Of His Kali-Carb Patients:

  1. Emotional instability. Mood swings in the week before menses.
  2. Many patients used the word control when describing their emotional state such as "I am afraid that I might lose control" or "I would like to be in control of the situation." (This confirms Vithoulkas assessment)
  3. Irritability is always present- worse waking, evenings or MB /MD. Quarrelsome tendency, particularly with own family.
    Dr Kent: Kali-carb patient is whimsical, irascible, and irritable to the very highest degree, quarrels with his bread and butter. Easily aroused to anger. Easily becomes violent. One patient said that even a cold draft of air annoyed her immensely. Always in antagonism with herself; she knows not what she wants and feels exceedingly unhappy. Contrary disposition; self-willed.
    Impatient with her children.
  4. Fears like Ars-alb and Phos. Fear of being alone, anxiety about health, fear of impending disease; fears regarding one's children; fear of ghosts, touch; evil.

Case 2: Dr A D Lippe Quoted By Dr Hoyne
C, aged 35, had not menstruated in three years; had frequent attacks of violent colic, almost always between 2 and 4 am; colic started 10 days ago and came on at irregular intervals; and at times followed by vomiting of food and mucus or if no vomiting then severe headache next day. Post-attack very weak in body and mind and unable to fix her attention on any subject; loses herself in the street because did not know where she was; when spoke could not find the right words. Pulse small and feeble. Kali-carb200 one dose cured her of all the troubles.

Polarity Of Symptoms
Dr Watson draws attention to this polarity.
Symptoms of excess of water are as much pronounced as dryness in Kali-carb patients. A generalized sensation of dryness runs through the whole remedy picture and it crops up in the patients who need this remedy. Dry cough, dry stool, dry skin, dry hair, dry eyes, dry throat, dry tongue and so on. On the other hand- great gathering of water in mouth, excessive lachrymation, diminution of sight after working in water, profuse sweats and night sweats. More striking, sensation as if the stomach is full of water; dreams of water; weeping (Watson). Dr Kent points to a peculiar sort of swelling between eyelids and eyebrows that fill up when coughing. Sometimes, this symptom alone guides to the remedy for ascertaining if Kali-carb does not fit rest of case.

Further Kent symptoms: dry, hacking cough with morning expectoration; increases gradually or sometimes very rapidly into a violent spasmodic cough with gagging and vomiting; when coughing feels as if head would fly to pieces. Whooping cough will be cured by Kali-carb especially if there is present that peculiar bag-like swelling referred to above.

Tip: whenever there is an issue to do with water or fluid retention or the lack of it Kali-carb ought to be considered along with Alumina, Bryonia, Natrum-mur and Nux-moschata (Watson)

Case 3: Dr Watson
A middle aged man consulted Dr Watson for a peculiar sensation- that he had a U-shaped tube in his stomach, partly filled with water and the water sloshed whichever way he turned. Dr Phatak's repertory: Splashing, swashing, as of water (p321), one of the remedies - Kali-carb 2 (Ref: Boger's Synoptic Key-P 46also). Pt helped a great deal. Another case with complaint of sensation that eyes full of water along with other Kali-carb symptoms. Dr Watson says that he has verified the sensation of water in the stomach on several occasions.

Affinity To Digestive Tract
The exaggerated mental control over emotions drives the symptoms to the solar plexus, says Vithoulkas. A peculiar condition in Kali-carb is a state of anxiety felt in the stomach, as though it is a fear. Everything goes to the stomach; even when skin touched there is an anxiety, fear or apprehension felt in the region of the stomach" (Kent). Vithoulkas says one patient felt sensation of being stuck in the solar plexus every time she would lie down for sleep; it was so severe that she was forced to get up and walk around in order to relieve the sensation.

"Kali-carb fits many dyspeptics. Feels so bloated after eating, as if he would burst; great flatulence; belches wind upwards and passes flatus downwards; flatus offensive. Pain in stomach and burning after eating.

Case 4: Dr J Schelling Quoted By Hoyne
A woman, 42 y, had emptiness in stomach with desire to eat; but eating the lightest food, caused nausea, gagging and vomiting; throbbing pain in pit of stomach, almost taking her breath away with constant yawning. Stool dry, stomach bloated, tense, painful to pressure. Awakens early morning with headache and vertigo. nauseated at the sight of food. A few doses of Kali-carb 200 cured in few days.

Tip: Many other symptoms come on when eating; drowsiness while eating is a Kali-carb characteristic, says Dr Clarke. Toothache only when eating; fishbone sensation in the throat; easy choking: food easily gets into windpipe.

Case 5: Dr Clarke A 65-yr-old lady, had chronic bronchial catarrh and emphysema; asthma with cough with mucus difficult to raise. When eating she was so weary she fell asleep and could not finish her meal". After eating, still very tired and in the morning she passed much gas. Kali-carb 30 removed her complaints speedily.

"Cutting in abdomen, as if torn to pieces; violent cutting, must sit bent over pressing with both hands or lean as far back for relief; cannot sit uptight; coldness with pains; he wants heat, hot drinks, and hot water bags. Dr Kent, however, warns "it would be cruel to give a dose of Kali-carb when the colic is on, as an unnecessary aggravation would be produced. There are plenty of short acting remedies that would relieve the pain quickly and at the close of the attack the constitutional remedy could then be given."

Kent also says that "the study of the colic alone during attacks gives a one-sided view of the case; but after the colic is over (say with Colocynthis) a study of the case would yield Kali-carb - deep and long acting; it cures conditions due to psora or to the suppression of eruptions in childhood or to the closing up of old ulcers and fistulous openings with a history of troubles ever since."

Case 6: Dr Schilling quoted by Dr Hoyne
Kali-carb persons have great desire for sweets and suffer from toothache only when eating or in morning on waking or excited by cold things.

A boy aged 15, developed violent toothache and headache since 4 days; stitching pain in the new molar into the temple, front of head and eye; with dizzy heaviness of head. He had constant chilliness, dry skin and couldn't perspire. Toothache was worse from chewing. One dose of Kali-carb 200 cured him in three hours.

Kali-carb can look like Nux-vom in gastric and bladder troubles and if in doubt follows well. Similarly both Kali-carb and Carbo-veg have very distended abdomens and are relieved by passing wind. Both have similar colic, which are better bending double; they share an aversion to tight clothing, the general lack of reaction and complaints which come on from loss of fluids.

Case 7: Dr E A Farrington
Dr E A Farrington cured one case of a singular backache. The lady was very nervous type. She came for her dyspepsia. She pointed out a peculiar symptom. "Everytime I eat a meal I suffer with intense pain in the back for half an hour or more". Dr Farrington hunted and found the peculiar symptom under Kali-carb, which cured.

Tips On Etiology:
Dr Watson gives some valuable tips based on ETIOLOGY, particularly for female problems:

  1. One has to consider this remedy for women who have never been well since childbirth, abortion, miscarriage, back or pelvic injury and over straining of back. It is more of a mechanical trauma affecting the uterus, pelvis or the back especially the lumbar region; particularly indicated after prolonged or difficult child birth such as forceps delivery.
  2. Never well since hysterectomy (again a pelvic trauma) and where some mechanical problem has resulted to the organs.

Case 8
A woman in her forties consulted Dr Watson for her severe, right-sided sciatica of several years duration. - intense and sharp pains traveling from the hip down to the knee and often she would wake from pains after 3-4 am. She walked and sat hunched to the right; history revealed that this trouble started after hysterectomy, which was done to cure her prolonged menopausal bleeding.

She was given Kali-carb 30 and the next day the patient complained that she was bleeding; as if she was having a profuse period! This was alarming because she no longer had a uterus! The bleeding persisted for one day and next day it stopped; so to her sciatica which never returned. Her posture, which was tilted to her right, became normal.

Dr Watson says that he had since verified the indication never been well since hysterectomy in several other cases and found Kali-carb to be the leading remedy where a mechanical problem has resulted.

"I have noticed that several patients who have been helped by this remedy for some mechanical problem such as back trouble or sciatica have given the appearance when walking or standing that they have one leg longer than the other and in some instances this was actually the case. I was therefore fascinated to discover a rubric in Kent's repertory "longer, leg '(p1033) - Kali-carb as the only italicized remedy" (Dr Watson). Surprisingly it does not figure in the opposite rubric: Extremities, shorter, one leg than the other P1190 (KV)

PMS is an area where Kali-carb is often useful (See Case1) as the remedy has general aggravations of symptoms before periods. Along with agg 2 to 5am; there is ovarian soreness, backache or pain in the legs before the period. It should be strongly considered for uterine pains before or during the period, which extends down to thighs. In his view it is also a leading remedy to think of, when labour pains extend to thighs (DD Viburnum).

The menses may be profuse, early or protracted or may be scanty, late or suppressed. Menses, which are offensive, acrid and excoriating, also indicate Kali-carb very strongly.

He has found it curative in uterine displacement, fibroids and cysts in dysmenorrhoea, metrorrhagia, endometriosis, pelvic inflammatory disease and menopausal complaints, with characteristic symptoms present.

"Kali-c has one of the most violent coughs of all remedies in the HMM - incessant, with vomiting and gagging, comes on at 3 0' clock in the morning, dry, hacking, hard and racking cough. Great dryness of the throat between 2 and3 am; Think of Kali-carb, when after troubles like measles, a catarrhal state is left behind, due to lack of reaction, the psoric sequelae. Cough following measles is very often Kali-carb; Sulphur, Carbo-veg, and Drosera are also frequently indicated in such coughs or pneumonia." (Kent)

Case 9: Schilling quoted by Hoyne
Girl, aged 6 had dry, hacking cough post-measles; fever and headache; stitches and pressing pain in the chest; short breathing, wheezing, rattling; dry skin; great thirst; whitish gray tongue; loss of appetite. Phos, Rhus-tox and Sulph merely reduced the fever. The cough became worse, with vomiting; pain in lower chest, with dull percussion sound; pale face and stool dry. Kali-carb 200 two doses relieved the cough in a short time.

Case 10 Dr Dorothy Shepherd
A young woman complained of a troublesome cough which started after operation for left sided emphysema at age five; always worse in winter; She was first seen in February 1934. X-rays showed nothing definite. She had been prescribed remedies earlier without much relief. The cough was dry and distressing; worse 2 to 5am; irritation behind sternum, palpitations when walking, worse mornings and going upstairs and during cough. Catches cold every time she goes out. Her periods were irregular all the winter - very scanty, coming on for two days every week or two weeks. Coughed constantly during consultation. Very irritable, weak and chilly with indigestion; rales and rhonchi and dullness right base of lung All these symptoms clearly pointed to Kali-carb, given in 6 potency BDS 19-4-34. No bad attack of cough since then. Menses regular. Kali-carb continued -30 potency one dose at nights for sometime. Patient became fully well thereafter by September.

The characteristic aggravation of all complaints of this remedy is 3 AM.

Case 11: Dr M L Tyler - Case Of Pleuro-Pneumonia
An old man was admitted in the Homoeopathic hospital for pleuro-pneumonia - right base. He had stabbing pains especially in the right chest, independently of respiration, but preventing sleep. Temperature rose to 104 and respiration 40. Severe rigor on the 6th day. Crying and shouting with pains; lies on the left side as he cannot lie on the affected side and wanted warmth.|

The symptoms clearly pointed to Kali-carb stitching pains, right chest and unlike Bryonia came on independently of movement, Chilly and wanted warmth. Kali-carb 30, 2 hourly. The pains stopped in 2 hours and the patient made a rapid recovery.

Tip: Dr Nash says that if in pneumonia or pleuro-pneumonia Bryonia fails, if the stitching pains are independently of respiratory movement, Kali-carb often helps and follows well after Bryonia.

Tip: Dr Kent says when pneumonia has passed away think of Kali-carb, if every time the patient takes a little cold it settles in the chest and with chest symptoms. There is sensitiveness of the body to weather changes to cold air and to wet; a continuous dry, hacking cough with gagging, the aggravation from three to five in the morning and the patient has flying neuralgic pains. Complaints dates back to his pneumonia.

It is not only a great remedy for pneumonia, pleurisy and heart troubles but goes much further and becomes very useful in incipient and even with advanced cases of phthisis pulmonalis. - Dr Nash.

Case 12: Dr Nash
The patient suffering from phthisis consulted Dr Brown. It was located mainly in the lower right lung, with profuse expectoration of pus-like matter; pulse 120; patient greatly emaciated, no appetite and there was quite a large cavity in the lung. (Kali-carb also has a delusion that the whole body is hollow-KV.) He was given weekly doses of Kali-carb and he became well in a few months time and lived for well over another 25 years.

There is a tendency to dropsies."It has dropsies all over the body. The feet bloat and the fingers puff; the back of the hands pit on pressure, the face looks puffy and waxy. (Kent)

Case 13: Dr Nash
The father- in-law of Dr Brown referred to above, was on his deathbed from anemia, hydrothorax and general dropsy. Several medicines were tried but the patient did not improve. After carefully noting that the complaints invariably were aggravated at 3 am Kali-carb 200with such miraculous results that in a very short time the old man was well and never had a return of his complaint till his death several years later.

Case 14: Dr Gypser
A male, aged 58 consulted Dr Gypser for severe pain in the left shoulder joint for several years. He described the pain, as "stitching" in nature and intermittent, < motion of arm; < lifting; < lying on painful shoulder and ameliorated by letting the arm hang down. The pain also extended from the shoulder into the muscles of the forearm. He also experienced a constant boring in between episodes of stitching pain.

Additionally, he got: nosebleed on the morning on washing his face; numbness of the left hand and especially the fingers when lying on the left arm during sleep, hoarseness after talking for a long time. Expectoration of white mucus, empty eructations, notably in the morning. He had a definite Hypochondriacal disposition. - anxious about his health.

The Reportorial Rubrics: Epistaxis, washing face ,from: Am-c,Ant-s, ARN, Calc-s, Dros, Kali-bi, Kali-c, Tarent
Fear, disease of impending: Am-c. KALI-C, Tarent
Numbness, upper limbs, lying on it: Kali-c
Dr Gypser consulted the Hering's MM on the drug and Chronic Diseases of Hahnemann and the following symptoms were relevant to the case.

From Hering:
Nosebleed: when washing the face, every morning at 9
Hoarseness, collection of mucus in throat;
Hawks out easily white mucus.

From Chronic Diseases:
He is afraid that he might not get well.
Apprehensive and anxious about his disease.
Frequent eructation, especially in the morning.
A stitch in the left side of the chest.
Stitches in the cardiac region.

The top of the left shoulder aches on violent motion of the left arm.
Severe pain in the top of the left shoulder, both at rest and in motion.
Tearing pain in the left shoulder joint; fine stitches in the top of the shoulders, both at rest and in motion.
Paralytic tension and drawing pain in left arm, from top of shoulder down to forearm.
The arm on which he lies at night goes to sleep.
It is clear that Kali-carb covers the case in full and it was prescribed XM one dose.
The acute attack was relieved in one day and the boring pain disappeared in a week. He had no further nose bleeding after the medicine; the stitches about the heart, eructations and numbness were gone by the end of second week; slight hoarseness remained and it also went away. (Dr Gypser- 2 cases of inflammation of shoulder joint, JAIH June 1986)

Case 15: Dr T K Gokhale Mrs N, aged 36, was suffering from pain in the knee-joint- cramping, worse movement. She had pain in the sacroiliac joint a couple of months back, relieved by Bryonia 200. That pain used to extend from the right hip to the knee-joint and was worse on motion. The pain was more in the knee-joint but along with some soreness in right hip joint. Scanty menses. After the last child-birth she also developed backache, now for a long time. A dose of Kali-carb 200 was given. Slight agg for two days and thereafter she was completely well. (Dr T K Gokhale, Poona, Hahnemannian Gleanings, Aug 1952)

Case 16: Dr Clarke A lady 73, stout, short, pale had suffered from rheumatic pains and an offensive vaginal discharge for four months. She described the pain as all round her abdomen and was "dull, heavy, depressing, commencing at the inner part of the right hip to the knee" The pain was very severe with great weakness and trembling accompanied the offensive vaginal discharge; urine was almost like blood and had a sandy element in it. She was given Kali-carb 1M one dose and in three months all the symptoms disappeared and never returned.

Case 17: Dr Clarke
A male patient had an ulcer of right leg with swelling of ankle with waking at 2 am. Kali-carb 30 cured him but he developed a new symptom "great weakness of right thigh, as if it would give out when walking", which is also a characteristic of this remedy and it also went away.

Mike Bridger wrote a comprehensive article on Kali-carb. (The Homeopath, Spring 2000 - No 77) Some additional points he made are:

  1. Kali-carb are people who put up with complaints and incompetence, but cannot rectify it - such as a railway ticket official or a person working under an incompetent boss.
  2. Their resignation is evident from their difficulty in recovering from acute illness- too weak and exhausted to throw off the acute ailment. Hopeless and depressed-often seen after flue, bronchitis and pneumonias. Resigned to their fate, sticks to a hateful job because of family responsibilities.
  3. Kali-carb persons are notoriously possessive even of things they do not like.-Hang on to their husbands even when they positively loathe them.
  4. They worry about money, poverty and future.
  5. Stoicism in face of difficult circumstances. Kali-carb is controlled and even rigid in their aversion to changing things, however unpleasant things may be.
  6. Indifference, either real or affected. If the latter, they pretend to be unconcerned by work, family and health, though internally extremely anxious.
  7. They do not think that anyone can make them well. They cannot explain what is wrong with them and even if they could, they do not bother, because what is the point?
  8. Kali-carb is a dutiful remedy and their sense of duty is not quite the same as other remedies like Carcinosin. It is more in doing what has to be done, especially related to family matters.

Kali-carb runs very close to Natr-mur in many of its old, long-standing bladder troubles. In old cases of gleet and long-standing cases of urinary troubles that follow gonorrhoea. These two medicines are useful, for the scanty, white, gleety discharge that remains. There is a lot of fluid retention and oedema in both. Both have characteristic backache, heavy protracted periods or amenorrhoea.

DD: In Natr-mur the burning is after urination and the patient is nervous and fidgety. If burning is during and after urination and the patient has a broken down constitution (looks withered, has much breathlessness upon going up the hill or even when walking) the remedy may be Kali-carb. (Kent).

All symptoms are likely to be worse after coition in Kali-carb. Vithoulkas says, one patient described a sensation of being struck in the solar plexus every time she would lie down for sleep. Mezereum also has a similar sensation and feels powerful anxiety in the stomach, but in Mezereum the anxiety arises from the stomach then overwhelms the whole organism, causing the person to feel as if he is dying.

Nux-vom is highly ambitious while Kali-carb is content to remain in his routine, only becomes irritable because of his sense of correctness and not because of frustrated ambition as in Nux-v. It is nevertheless common to see a patient, after responding nicely to Kali-carb, progress into a Nux-vomica state. (Vithoulkas)

Both Kali-carb and Lyco are possessive, overly mentalised and miserly. While Lyco likes to establish his innate superiority and would try to control the interview, Kali-carb tries to control himself. Like Lyco, Kali-carb is a liver remedy; both are flatulent, feel distended after eating a little. The time of aggravation is of course, very different.

Both share a great desire for sweet things; Kali-carb additionally for sour things, like Sepia, Hepar-sulph. Both have aversion to bread and to meat; both remedies can be full after a small quantity of food though it is more pronounced in Lyco. Both have a sensation of heaviness in stomach after eating - both have stomach ulcers; both patients suffer if they go without food for long; for gall stones and liver pains.

Tip. Whether it is an apparently Arsenicum case of asthma, an apparently colic case of Colocynthis, an apparent Bryonia case of pleurisy, when you find that these remedies do nothing, Kali-carb can save the day. It can be confused with Natrum-mur. Mike Bridger says that he used this remedy in arthritis, with pain in the small of the back as a concomitant. Many a time he says it prevented hip replacements or at least prolonged the inevitable, with the characteristic symptom of sharp pain extending down the leg, especially the right leg.

There is over sensitivity to noise (easily startled) touch, drafts of air and to pain. Hypersensitivity in soles of the feet. One patient in reply to a query of Dr Watson as to what will happen if he tickled her soles replied that she would kill him. Kent also confirms that when accidentally brushed at the feet of a patient the patient experienced pain and exclaimed "Ouch".

Patients needing Kali-carb, who have a pronounced weakness in the liver and /or gall bladder will very often benefit from a course of Chelidonium in tincture or low potency at some stage during the treatment.( Dr Watson)


  1. Kent's Lectures on Materia Medica
  2. Kali-carbonicum- Dr Ian Watson, reproduced in Quarterly Homoeopathic Digest, Sept 1992.
  3. Essence of Materia Medica - George Vithoulkas.
  4. Up the Swanee with Kali-carb- Mike Bridger, The Homoeopath-Spring 2000
  5. Leaders in Homoeo Therapeutics- Dr E B Nash
  6. Clinical Materia Medica- Dr Farrington
  7. Clinical Therapeutics- Dr TS Hoyne