Sulphur has 1969 symptoms, covering every area and system of the organism. Especially noticeable in the proving are symptoms dealing with the stomach and the hepatic region (approx. 189 symptoms), the lower extremities (180 symptoms) Cough, chest and respiration symptoms (around 142), and symptoms relating to sleep, dreams, and the night time (137).
Skin symptoms are often seen as central to the prescription of Sulphur. There are approximately 38 symptoms given in skin generalities, although the expected itching is mentioned around 64 times, around 15 times in Hahnemann’s introduction. More occurrences can be found throughout the proving, in symptoms relating to forehead, eyebrows, eyes, ears, nose, cheeks, lips, abdomen, rectum, genitalia, extremities, back and neck.
It is true that Sulphur is confusing, can aggravate day or night, before or after meals, and has a plethora of symptoms ranging through every system in the body. But on reading the proving, certain things start standing out. Here are a few of them:
- Hahnemann’s prescribing note: if there is itching, which may go off temporarily after scratching but leaves a burning sensation. There are approximately 145 mentions of burning pain, so this sensation is very clearly an important part of the remedy.
- A clear aggravation from being in the open air. There are approximately 25 mentions of walking in the open air – mainly aggravations although walking can sometimes ameliorate. But there are around 37 mentions of open air on its own, most of them aggravations.
- After meals: there are around 55 mentions of symptoms coming on after eating, often after the evening meal.
- Night aggravates – here it is a mixture of the night itself, lying down, lying in bed, but there is a strong trail running through the remedy implying that this patient will give those caring for him or her a truly miserable night. Aggravations from lying down (around 47), from lying or just being in bed (around 66), screaming in sleep, tossing, uncovering, nightmares, it’s all there. There’s a whole consecutive section of 47 symptoms all relating to aggravations during night-time.