In the proving of Platina, the section on Lower Extremities stands out, with approximately 64 symptoms, followed closely by emotional symptoms, clocking in at 41 symptoms. Upper and lower extremities taken together constitute over 100 symptoms, roughly 20% of the entire proving. Stomach and abdominal symptoms, sleep issues and headaches also play a prominent part.
The emotional symptoms are noticeable not just in their number, but also in the number of bold symptoms in this section of the proving. Around 10 bold symptoms in 41, roughly a quarter of all the emotional symptoms in the proving. Note – I am referring to the symptoms relating to the emotions only, not symptoms relating to intellect and sensorium.
The most extreme emotional symptoms are those relating to what we are used to hearing about Platina – the loftiness and contempt shown to others deserving of respect etc. But these are only 4 symptoms out of 41. However, many of the other symptoms reported by Gross relate to a total misery and depression, often expressed in weeping, and sometimes resulting in a paralysis of action.
Three of the symptoms in this section are from Hahnemann, and even just these three present a picture of dejection and sensitivity:
4. Anxiety and palpitation, especially during a walk.
16. Sensitive mood.
24. Very much inclined to weep, and too much affected by the least cause.
Another area where there is a high proportion of bold symptoms is where the facial appearance of the prover is described. We see that a patient needing Platina could have a very pale face with coldness and numbness, but could also be red with burning heat. Here are the symptoms – notice the ones in bold:
125. Face, pale and sunken. [Gr.].
126. Pale, wretched appearance ; for several days. [Gr.].
127. Intense heat of the face ; the eyes burned and itched violently.
128. Burning heat of the face with glowing redness, with great dryness of the mouth, with violent thirst, pressive headache, – and dizzy quivering before the eyes, with lachrymation ; for several evenings ; from 5 to 9 o’clock. [Gr.].
129. Heat of the face and of the whole head, sultriness and dull pain in the forehead ; she cannot contain herself. [Gr.].
130. Sensation of coldness, formication and numbness in the whole of the right side of the face. [Gr.].
A further characteristic to be seen in the proving is an aggravation while sitting. This is particularly pronounced in the section on lower extremities – 19 symptoms showing aggravation while sitting, almost a third of the total. This is one of the most pronounced aggravations in the proving, and a symptom that can be very helpful to the prescriber. We are more familiar with the patient who talks of weariness in the legs and just wants to sit down – this patient will say that sitting down does not help, and may even make it worse.
So if the more extreme emotional symptoms are put to one side, if we use Carroll Dunham’s view that this is more about depression than about erethism (see previous post for description and definition), the physical symptoms alone will probably lead to more frequent consideration of Platina as the remedy of choice in more prosaic, less lofty emotional, mental and physical pictures of disease.