Creating Waves of Awareness
Back in 1981, I was honored to meet two physicians, both of whom where immunologists. I had traveled to Charleston, WVA to be treated by Dr. Edwin Shepherd, and at that time, he allowed me to live in his home. Also, Dr. Carton Lee (of St. Louis) came to town to consult with Dr. Shepherd concerning a child who had been greatly harmed by a 2 yr DPT vaccination.
In the process, I was able to have many discussions with both these men. Dr. Lee pioneered a substantial modification to what is commonly called Rinkle Titration allergy treatment. Please allow me to share some things that these men said that strongly related to Homeopathy and ask for comment.
1. Dr. Lee told me that a titrated antigen (similar to a low potency homeopathic remedy of an isode nature) builds immunity whether administered under the tongue or subcutaneously (usually on the upper arm). Will a homeopathic remedy work if a solution is applied to the surface of the arm or by injection under the skin?
2. Dr. Lee told me that the antigen will not produce an immune response under two conditions: 1) the patient is under anethesia and 2) the nerve trunk serving the administration site has been transected. Is there an parallel in homeopathy?
3. I asked Dr. Lee how he came to develop his "Overdose/Underdose" principle. This is what he told me, "I had just administered a scratch test on a woman's back [Johns Hopkins allergy school method of scratch testing] and had turned away from her to write on my clip board. When I turned to observe her, she was lying on the floor with bluish skin, no pulse, no respiration. I had a 1cc syringe in my hand and said to myself, 'She is dead anyway, so why not experiment," I injected the entire syringe of concentrate into her arm, and she immediately sat up and began speaking."
From this little experience I deduce that dilutions of antigens used my allergists are in fact energy medicines that work on the same principle as homeopathic remedies. For general information, an allergy vaccine is made by soaking 5 grams of a substance (say pureed green beans) in 100cc of a glycerine-based extracting solution (something like glycerine mixed with normal saline but with more sodium bicarbonate than normal present). This solution is then vacuum filtered and cultured on blood agar to make certain it is not contaminated. This solution is equivalent to the mother tincture and is diluted 200:1 to create what is called a stock solution. It is not potentized. Dilutions are created on a 5:1 scale and used for testing in the Rinkle method.
4. Lee from this incident of the revived patient deduced that in high concentration (very low potency), the vaccines produced "overdose" overt symptoms, the same as a patient would experience due to environmental exposure, generally characterized by hypertension, sneezing or whatever symptom a normal exposure to a food or environmental agent would provoke in the patient (not a well patient but an allergic patient). In low concentration (equivalent to low to medium potency), the vaccine would produce "underdose" characterized by hypotension and anaphylaxis (shock). He also by clinical trials noticed that there was a dose of the vaccine that would rather precisely neutralize the patient's symptoms.
To give an example, if a patient were allergic to a particular mold, giving him too much antigen might provoke sneezing. Giving him too little might make him tired. But giving him the neutralizing dose would not only cancel his symptoms (stop the sneezing or end his lethargy) but would also allow T cells to clone normally and actually build immunity tot he substance so that over time the patient would cease to be allergic to the antigen.
I observed this overdose/underdose phemomina hundreds of times in Shepherd's office. This leads to a very logical question. How does this all related to Hahnemann's comments on patient sensitivity, and is there such a thing as a neutralizing dose equivalent when using homeopathic remedies.
5. When subcutaneous injections of a succession of antigen dilutions #1, #2, #3, #4 etc, are applied to the upper arm, the hystamine reaction forms a bump. The diameter of this spot is a function of the logarithm of the concentration of the antigen by weight. In other words, diameter plotted against the dilution number on linear graph paper is a straight line UNTIL the underdose dose is first applied at which time generally a large ugly red fair of 3 or more inches in diameter appears--no raised skin.
Does the effect of a homeopathic remedy track in any way to the dilution number?
6. Rinkle Titration Allergy treatment and Lee's modification appears to be ISODE homeopathy in an extremely pure form. What the person is actually allergic to is always the treatment in an diluted form. Typical dilutions are #2, #3, #4, . . . to about #7. The highest dilution I have ever seen used was a #12, and it was used on a very sick patient, who later died of immune disease.
The high dilutions have more dramatic physiological effects while the lower dilutions tend to produce "proving" effects in people who have allergic responses to the antigen. When given to a totally well person, a #2 dilution disappears into the skin without any physiologic response at all.
It would seem that there is some overlap between Homeopathy and Rinkle Titration allergy that may enlarge insight on both sides of the fence. One thing Dr. Shepherd was fond of was making vaccines from a patient's blood or from some pathology on the patient such as a scab. He was extremely successful using these autogoneous vaccines to treat diseases such as malaria. This leads to to believe that making remedies from humans is a neglectic aspect of homeopathy.
I am interested in experiences homeopaths have had that may clarify Dr. Lee's observations and or place them in a position to be useful in the practice of homeopathy.