Navigation Services Home Learning Articles Products News Breeders Contact Navigation Services

Homotoxicology: Some Basics

Although homotoxicology is based on the principals of homeopathy it can be thought of as a "bridge" between allopathic and homeopathic medicine. As such it has many similarities to classical homeopathy as well as some key differences. Practitioners consider homotoxicology to be an updated renewal of homeopathy on a more extensive, scientific basis.

At the time Samuel Hahnemann developed the ‘science’ of homeopathy (late 1700’s and early 1800‘s) very little was know about molecular biology, biochemistry, etc. Thus to determine an applicable remedy for a particular patient, the mental, emotional and physical symptoms must all be carefully considered to arrive at a "constitutional" remedy best suited for that individual. Emphasis is placed on the mental and emotional symptoms with less importance given to the physical symptoms. So it is not unusual to have two people exhibiting the same physical symptoms, being treated with two different homeopathic remedies due primarily to the significance of different mental and/or emotional symptoms.

In this century, homotoxicology was developed by Dr. Hans Henrich Reckeweg (Germany) to take advantage and use the explosion of knowledge in the basic medical sciences in conjunction with the principals of homeopathy. One key difference is that it places more emphasis on the physical manifestations of disease and tends to use diagnostic tools based on anatomical and clinical findings (similar to allopathic medicine) and then utilizes complex homeopathic remedies designed to restore the patients vital energy and to balance the biological flow system.

From the late 1930’s to the early 1970’s Dr. Reckeweg worked to develop over 1,000 remedies using knowledge from "the best of both worlds". The medications, which he formulated, are derived from:

  • the enzyme systems of the body,
  • allopathic medicines,
  • extensive nosode preparations,
  • and the more traditional homeopathic remedies both in potency chords (i.e. more than one potency of the same substance) and together as complex remedies (i.e. more than one substance in a remedy).

He reasoned that where a single remedy failed to act, it may be because the power of the disease has manifested in such degeneration of the body’s defense system, that the "vital force" is to weak to properly respond. This seemed particularly true with deep seated chronic diseases where even though the specific constitutional remedy was clearly indicated, the response was poor or seemingly non existent. Until the vital force or the body’s defense systems are restored, single homeopathic remedies may be limited in their effectiveness. Thus a "combination" of remedies, designed to assist a broader range of functions would seem appropriate to help the body rid itself of toxins and give the system a better chance to heal itself.

So many of the chronic diseases that we see today are most likely the result of toxic impregnation of intra-cellular regulatory and metabolic systems. Symptoms may be absent until the damage is quite widespread. Judicious use of catalysts, nosodes, sarcodes, and combination remedies can help clear acute and chronic diseases so that a constitutional remedy can be chosen. Utilizing all the tools available gives us the greatest chance for success.

I do want to be very clear that the combination formulas developed by Dr. Reckeweg are unique and based upon not only a large body of knowledge but also on a complete strategy for therapeutic application in the various phases of disease. These are not the same as the "combination" formulas commonly sold over the counter at health food stores or more recently at dog shows.

Most classical homeopaths will say that the use of combination remedies is "analogous to trying to create harmony by tuning six different radios to separate stations simultaneously in the hopes of creating a symphony" (source: The Science of Homeopathy). In reference to the common "street" combination remedies they are probably correct. Unfortunately many classical homeopaths are unwilling to "waste" their time to study homotoxicology because of the blind spot developed by an aversion to any combination remedy. Thus they miss the fact that a combination remedy, carefully constructed and developed so that the frequencies are complementary, is itself more like a symphony and could be more powerful in action under the right circumstances than a single remedy.

I guess the main reason I would urge any professional interested in holistic health care to study homotoxicology, is based on a simple fundamental—it works!

Even though this great body of work was developed for humans, I have found it to be equally effective in veterinary applications. With animals we often do not have the luxury of accurately determining the ‘emotional’ and ‘mental’ symptoms necessary for correct proscribing in classical homeopathy. Even the physical symptoms are sometimes unclear (ex. is it a sharp pain, a dull pain, etc.). As homotoxicology places more emphasis on the physical aspects, we can use standard western science tools such as a blood work up, allergy testing, etc. in choosing the most applicable remedy for a recognized veterinary condition.

Following the strategies of homotoxicology we may combine other modalities such as diet or nutritional support without fear of "clouding the picture" to determine the proper "constitutional" remedy. One of the major goals is to clear up the physical weaknesses that are dragging down the vital force. Once this has been accomplished the constitutional remedy has a much better chance of working more effectively.