Influenza Pandemic and Homeopathy Prophylaxis

This essay will discuss influenza pandemic and its characteristics and how homeopathy could be used in preventative treatment.
Pandemics continued to cause high mortality in the 20th century: the Spanish Flu claimed 20-40 million victims, the Asiatic Flu – H2N2 (1957), 1 million and the Hong Kong Flu – H3N2 (1968), 700 thousand (Zimmer,   2009, Burke D, 2009).   The 1918 influenza pandemic was one of the greatest infectious calamities in human history. Widespread epidemic that affected many people around the world have appeared several times in recent centuries.   In these cases, about 50 – 100 million people died.   This virulent influenza killed people in the prime of their lives and very quickly (Pappas, 2010).  

Influenza symptoms are often dramatic and easy to characterise, for example (Marino, 2009):

  * Onset of illness.   Frequent sneezing with nasal obstruction and discharge; dryness and itch in the throat with dry, whooping, frequent and painful cough. Slight catarrhal conjunctivitis, and bluish discoloration around the mouth; frequent nose bleeds
  * Respiratory and thorax   - Lung congestion especially in the base, bilateral, with dyspnea due to intense spasm of bronchial smooth muscle, intense whooping-like cough
  * Gastrointestinal   nausea and   vomiting, abdominal pain around the navel
  * Neurological   Headache, vertigo, neuralgia; a strong desire for sleep, mental confusion etc

In an epidemic, a handful of homeopathic remedies tend to emerge as frequently useful in a given geographic area. These remedies become known as the “genus epidemicus” for a given outbreak, and can sometimes be used preventively (Neustaedter R 2004).   Preventive use of homeopathy was first applied in 1801 during an epidemics of scarlet fever in Königslütter, Germany, when Hahnemann (1843) prescribed a single dose of ‘ Belladona’, as the remedy of the epidemic genius to susceptible children in the town with 100% success.   Homeopathic prophylaxis is grounded on...