Aconitum Napellus
Monks Hood

Once the art of homoeopathic treatment is fully understood, day-today ailments can often be controlled at the outset and complications can be avoided. In the early stages of all ailments, Aconite is at the top of the list. Its full name is Aconitum Napellus, though it is commonly called Aconite.

Aconite is a poison which affects different parts of the body. In the traditional books on medicine, there is some mention of it among other poisons. However, the minutely detailed account of Aconite is based on proving of Aconite done by Dr. Hanneman and other experienced Homoeopaths on themselves.

In the process of proving, Aconite, or any other poison, is not used in pure form. Instead, as Dr.Hanneman suggested, by example of Aconite, the poison is diluted to the extent that it virtually loses its harmful effect on the body. However, if given repeatedly to a healthy person, it will overwhelm the body and produce its injurious effects in a mild form. These effects are temporary but noticeable enough for the nature of the poison to be studied in minute detail. Through this proving technique, the characteristic features of the Aconite were revealed. These are great fear, suddenness, and severity of illness. The sickness comes on suddenly and the patient thinks that he will not be able to survive.

Aconite is usually considered to be the remedy of dry and cold weather because the diseases related to it are contracted in such weather, though not necessarily so. In general, any sudden, severe illness of any weather associated with intense fear of death should be treated with Aconite.

Aconite given along with Rhus Tox at the onset of a severe illness becomes more widely effective. In my opinion, it is a substitute for Aspirin and a very good one. In all such ailments in which there is restlessness and fever with a feeling of something untoward in the offing, Aconite 200 and Rhus Tox 200, two or three doses given in the early stage of disease, offer almost immediate relief.

Once my security officer, (Retired Major Mahmood Ahmad), accompanied us for cycling. It was pouring with rain and the weather was very cold, we were all soaking wet. The next morning, he was caught up by high fever and severe body aches. He was given Aconite 200 combined with Rhus Tox 200 and Arnica 200 combined with Bryonia 200 alternatively, every half hour. In a few hours, there was no trace of the ailment left, and Major Mahmood Ahmad Sahib healthily returned to his duty. However, after getting wet in the rain in cold weather, one should not rely only on Aconite and Rhus Tox, but Arnica combined with Bryonia should also be given alternatively.

I discovered this prescription, after long experience. It acts on the diseases of the intestines, lungs, and in typhoid fever, as well as on malaria and dysentery promptly. Many a time, the disease is not completely controllable with this combination, and the analogous remedy will be required for complete recovery. In influenza, this combination formula may not work at all, unless given right at the onset of symptoms. If treatment is delayed, then other indicated remedies would be required.

Diseases may be divided into two categories according to their duration. Regarding their duration, the diseases can be:

  1. Acute i.e. the ones which come on with sudden severity and disappear just as fast.
  2. Chronic i.e. the ones which gradually establish themselves in the body over a long period. Some of them stay for a relatively short period such as typhoid, while others linger on for a long time, such
    as tuberculosis, asthma and chronic enlargement of the glands sometimes leading to a transformation into cancer. Aconite is the topmost remedy in acute diseases.

Kidney pain (renal colic) immediately responds to the administration of two doses of Aconite 1000 and Belladona 1000 repeated every fifteen minutes, in most patients. However, if the colicky pain is relieved by heat, the above combination will not work as it works only where heat aggravates. In such cases, one dose of Colocynth CM will offer immediate relief, or Mag Phos 6X dissolved in water and sipped, will relieve this spasmodic pain. But Aconite and Belladona will work well if the colicky pain is relieved by cold application.

Aconite will work immediately in sudden, severe dysentery if associated with an element of fear. There is no match for Aconite in acute dysentery of dry, hot weather. Aconite is useful in heart disease also. My late father, a well-experienced homoeopath, used to prescribe Aconite and Crataegus together in Mother Tincture form. The combination of these two works like a tonic for the heart muscle. Eight to ten drops of Crataegus Q and only one to two drops of Aconite Q are mixed in water. Aconite being a strong poison should not be used in a larger quantity. Large amounts could be dangerous.

Aconite is useful in a patient with a rapid heartbeat. Unusually rapid heart and lack of sleep may be secondary to distension of the stomach with gas or mental anxiety. Fear, bad news or apprehension for an
examination or some other worry may also cause palpitations of the heart. Aconite 30 or 200 will promptly restore the heartbeat to normality and the mind will be set at peace.

Aconite is of great use in some mental illnesses too. When a sudden calamity or depression causes mental shock, or there is an unreasonable sense of fear from everything, Aconite at the outset of
symptoms will benefit significantly. Once the disease has already established, other remedies should be given. In this respect, Sulphur is the most salient. Sulphur carries on the action of Aconite on a longterm
basis, while Aconite exhibits the same symptoms in the short term.

Aconite is very useful in common diseases like bacterial food poisoning after the ingestion of stale rotting food, resulting in sudden severe diarrhoea or dysentery. Blood-mixed dysentery of the rainy
season associated with fear is well controlled by Aconite. In some illnesses, the patient violently screams with fear, and feels dizzy. For example, in case a dog suddenly jumps on somebody along the way and they feel terrified and dizzy. Aconite will promptly benefit in this situation.

Aconite and Belladona together are very good in the sudden inflammation of the eyes. They are complementary to each other and should be started right away without waiting for further symptoms. However, where the signs and symptoms evidently pertain to either of the two, only that one should be used. It will work precisely and for long time.
Aconite is good in sudden severe earache due to exposure to cold. Typically, every pain or ache of Aconite is associated with a throbbing sensation. The patient cannot tolerate noise or loud music.

Aconite is similar to Pulsatilla in that the feverishness and discomfort is more evident on one side of the face. One cheek may be red and the other pale. This is common in children. Early administration of
Aconite will offer prompt cure. In case the delay has already occurred, Pulsatilla, Lycopodium or Natrum Mur should be tried. If due to cold, there is severe toothache or soreness in the throat, Aconite would definitely be needed. If there is congestion of a part of a body due to the increased blood flow and pressure, spontaneous bleeding may start internally or externally. Whatever the reason of this sudden episode associated with sense of fear, Aconite should be administrated without any reservation.

If due to a sudden mental shock, there is a stoppage of urine, Aconite should be given. The prompt use of Aconite in the case of bad news of somebody’s death or financial loss will save the person from delayed deleterious effects. Some doctors believe that Aconite is more useful in women than in men. The internal diseases of the women and inflammation of the uterus can be controlled if Aconite is given at the beginning of the disease. The Aconite illnesses subside in open air, but get worse at night in a warm room or if there is dry, cold air.

Adjuvants: Sulphur, Coffea, Arnica, Belladonna, Bryonia, Phosphorus, Spongia
Antidotes: Nux Vomica and Sulphur
Potency: Mother Tincture or usually 30, 200, 1000 or CM,
depending upon the situation and the experience of the homoeopath.