2002-01-26 / Columnists

Health and Harmony

Homeopathy And Autism:
Report on a presentation by Paul Herscu,ND, DHANP, National Center for Homeopathy
By Dr. Nancy Gahles

Homeopathy And Autism:
Report on a presentation by Paul Herscu,
ND, DHANP, National Center for Homeopathy

"The renowned homeopath Dr. Paul Herscu addressed a full lecture hall on the subject of "Homeopathy and Autism". He began by stating that he intended to address not only the professional homeopaths in the room, but also the family members of autistic children. Dr. Herscu acknowledged that homeopathy has not had great success in treating autism. How do you choose an individualized homeopathic remedy for a child who doesn't speak to you and appears to live in his own inner world? Dr. Herscu impressed upon the group that only through the pressure of having to cope with many such difficult cases has he developed a strategy that could lead to success.

Dr. Herscu is now firmly convinced that all autistic patients should be treated with homeopathy. He gave three main reasons. First, the conventional treatment of psychiatric drugs is meant to calm the patient down, not to cure. Second, autism is really a spectrum. It ranges from mild to severe and, in Dr. Herscu's opinion, is caused by a variety of diseases, some neurological, some biochemical, etc. With accurate homeopathic treatment, all cases will move in the right direction. It is only a matter of how far. However, he was quite clear in stating that the degree of autism did not seem to correlate to the degree of cure. In other words, mild cases may receive only partial benefit, whereas some severe cases have been greatly affected by homeopathic treatment. The third reason for choosing homeopathy is that many of the other therapies, such as diet and nutrition, seem to work much better after homeopathic treatment. In particular, the benefits of sensory integration therapy are increased by the action of a good remedy.

Dr. Herscu then explained in basic terms the stimulus/reaction model of symptoms and its significance to the homeopath. As the child is stressed, they respond with a reaction. This reaction becomes a symptom/sign of characteristic importance. The homeopath must accurately observe these outward symptoms. The real challenge is to understand what the patient is saying both verbally and, in the case of autism, nonverbally. ... By fully perceiving the patient, one may learn to understand that individual's cycle of stress and response.

For anyone looking for a magic bullet, Dr. Herscu's presentation may be disappointing. However, for the practitioner who takes on autistic cases, the message was clearly optimistic. These cases can be helped. 

"By deeply understanding your patient, and with hard work, the rewards can be great." (Excerpted from Homeopathy Today, an article by Spero Latchis).

As I mentioned in last week's article, autism, ADD/ADHD, and the learning disabilities are spectrum diseases. They require a multidisciplinary approach. As I also mentioned last week, they require understanding, hard work, and love. The rewards can be great. Intention is the key. When you have the right intention, right action will follow. Where you focus your intention, energy will follow. When we all work together for our good and the good of all those concerned, miracles happen, which reminds me of the dream of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., whose birthday we celebrate on Jan. 21, which affirms that all God's children live together in peace and love.

May the Blessings Be!

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