All English-speaking homoeopaths are aware that some of the most important homoeopathic remedies have their origin in Latin America. Because of the barrier of language, far fewer realise to what extent some of the most important work in homoeopathy also comes from that subcontinent.
In this comparative study of thirty-seven remedies, Dr Eugenio Candegabe displays how the materia medica may be reconstructed through the mental symptoms of the repertory, so as to find the remedy whose action most closely corresponds to the dynamic totality of an individual patient's life. These reconstructions are always substantiated in the provings from which the repertory symptoms were originally extracted.
The book is structured around seven principal chapters, each based on a major polychrest. Each chapter opens with a detailed description of the remedy, presenting all the rubrics that may in some way add to its fullest possible image. This is followed by a comprehensive synthesis of the symptomatology, summarising in a schematic diagram those few interrelated rubrics which best define the character of that remedy. These outstanding symptoms - not less than five or more than ten of them - are termed the Minimum Characteristic Syndrome.
Each chapter is completed by a differential analysis of the remedy against numerous other remedies whose own most significant features closely overlap the Minimum Characteristic Syndrome of the polychrest in question. The reader is reminded throughout that the value of symptoms will also be influenced by the miasmatic elements present within the case. This is a rigorous process by which the search for the simillimum is simplified and facilitated.
'What a welcome publication -- finally Candegabe's Comparative Materia Medica is available in English. Eugenio Candegabe is a contemporary Argentinian medical homoeopath trained in the excellent tradition of the South American Schools. He studied homoeopathy under his great mentor Dr Tomas Paschero, with whom he worked closely.
In this comparative study, Candegabe focuses on the mind symptoms of six polychrest medicines and one nosode, each dealt with in a separate chapter: Lycopodium, Silicea, Thuja, Medorrhinum, Nat. Mur., Kali Carb. and Lachesis. Calc. Sulph., Sepia and Sulphur are studied in less detail. Around the hub of the seven closely detailed studies, a total of thirty-seven remedies are compared, like spokes meeting in the centre of the wheel with common characteristic symptoms, going out into the periphery with the individual characteristics of each.
The chapters open with a detailed description of the drug, drawing on rubrics form Kent's Repertory, encompassing dreams, delusions and sensations as well as generals for some drugs. Candegabe then synthesises and summarises the key features of each, referring to rubrics from Kent. These key symptoms are further synthesised and condensed to form the Minimum Characteristic syndrome -- a small close-knit group of symptoms which provide a clear characteristic definition of the drug, encompassing not less than five and not more than ten symptoms. This is illustrated in a schematic diagram with the Minimum Characteristic Syndrome in the centre and interrelated rubrics grouped according to common themes around this circle.
... Clearly this publication is a success. Not only does it enhance our understanding of widely used polychrests - more valuable is the inspiration it gives the reader. Candegabe give the tools to access and study materia medica in a deeply satisfying way. He has accomplished what he set out to do, making a contribution that enables the homoeopath to understand what is curative in the medicament to restore health. His love for homoeopathy and his deep understanding of Hahnemann and Kent shine through his writing.'
British Homoeopathic Journal
The remedies studied in detail are: