Wild rosemary
 – Genus ledum, family rhodoracea, Class decandria monogynia.
 – This bush, which is also cultivated in gardens, grows in the damp regions of the north of Europe, in the mountains of Vosges, etc. Except by the goat, it is not eaten by animals, on account of the strong and resinous smell of its leaves, which keeps off the lice, prevents floors from getting mouldy, and it is said, imparts to Russian leather the particular odor of which it is known to be possessed.*
 – Empirical applications.
 – The medical history of ledum is very brief.
 – Scarcely any other than the Swedish physicians, have endeavored to employ this drug.
 – A decoction of it was used to free oxen and pigs from their lice; a practice, which has led me to a very curious application of ledum.
 – Linne, to whom we are indebted for a knowledge of this fact, informs us, that the same decoction, if taken internally, has cured violent headaches, and a species of angina, against which other medicines had been used with much less effect. *
 – Westring, likewise, praises ledum highly in a very fatal epidemic and contagious angina, characterized by a convulsive cough, rapid and considerable swelling of the cervical glands, which was very painful, and accompanied with a slow fever.*
 – Rosentein, Scopoli, and Jacquin, relate similar facts.
 – Some of the symptoms of ledum account for this success.
 – “This plant,” says Merat and de Lens, “if applied in the form of a lotion, cures the itch and scald head; it is supposed to be possessed of narcotic properties, and of the faculty of quieting exanthematic fevers, etc.”*
 – If these observations were a little  more precise, they would be correct.
 – Ledum, indeed, cures neither the itch nor scald head; but it destroys the acarus and lice, and, by this means, may sometimes have facilitated the removal of these eruptions.
 – Without being a narcotic, properly speaking, ledum has stupefying properties, like all its analogues.
 – And like these, it has acute cutaneous symptoms, which, blindly applied, may have given rise to the idea, which was admitted much too generally, however, that ledum possesses calming properties in the treatment of exanthematic fevers.
 – Be this as it may, the Alloeopathic traditions concerning ledum, are evidently exceedingly vague and scantly.
 – Indeed, this drug had almost been lost sight of, when Hahnemann published its pathogenesis.*
 – Homoeopathic applications
 – “Although the action of ledum upon the healthy organism,” says Hahnemann, “has not as yet been studied in anything like a complete manner; the symptoms which we know of this drug, are sufficient to show that it is scarcely of any use except in chronic maladies, which are principally characterized by cold, and a deficiency of animal heat.”*
 – Doctor Roth, who has drawn from various sources a few additions to Hahnemann’s pathogenesis, expresses himself as follows, in regard to the action of this drug : “If we would believe what the various authors say of the medicinal virtues of ledum, we might feel tempted to class this drug among those that offer resources against a large number of maladies; but in verifying the sources of these assertions, we will find ourselves disabused.” *
 – The former of these two opinion, which was admitted by its author to have been premature, has, to some extent at least, been refuted by experience.
 – As regards the opinion of Doctor Roth, it simply goes to confirm a thing that we had been aware of for a long time past, namely, that the Alloeopathic physicians, whose assertions have been collected by our learned colleague, have never had the least suspicion of the true properties of ledum, and have, therefore, been unable, to avail themselves of them in practice.
 – Ledum, whose sphere of action is contiguous to that of arnica, and is frequently identical with it, seems to me to exercise a special action on the capillary system in parts of the body where the cellular tissue is wanting, and which present in most men a resisting and dry texture, such as the fingers and toes.
 – It is perhaps for this reason, that it acts better on the small than on the large joints.
 – Be this as it may, I have become convinced by numerous facts, that in the treatment of traumatic whitlow, in persons of a sanguine temperament, it is incomparably superior to arnica.
 – A remarkable fact, and which I believe I have been the first to point out, is this, that ledum is to contusions.
 – Guided by a few of its cutaneous symptoms, which seemed to me to agree with the use that was made of this drug in domestic practice at the time of Linne, I commenced with trying it against mosquito bites, and the result astonished me.
 – A single teaspoonful of a tumblerful of water, in which a few globules of the fifteenth dilution of ledum had been dissolved, quieted completely, in a few minutes, I might even say, in a few seconds, the itching caused by the bite, without any external application being necessary.
 – From mosquito bites, I passed to the stings of bees and wasps, etc., as soon as an opportunity was offered, which, happily, was not very long.
 – Here the result was less prompt, but still very satisfactory.
 – In the space of two years which followed these first trials, I treated with ledum in the most satisfactory manner, 1st, several whitlows, which had been caused by pricks with the needle, or by stings of insects; 2d, a violent bite of a water-rat at the index-finger of the right hand, in a young man who was catching crabs; 3d, a serious wound in a young lady, who fell with an embroidering needle in her hand, which was pierced through and through.
 – No haemorrhage had resulted from this accident; but I observed in the patient this intense cold which accompanies and characterizes the ledum fever.
 – In from six to seven days the patient was cured.
 – I have strong reasons to think that ledum is less adapted to the acute arthritis of the large joints, than to the gout proper, when it had been seated for a long time in the toe or finger-joints, without causing a swelling of the hand or foot.
 – Ledum is particularly indicated when the violent tensive or tearing pain in one of the small toe or finger-joints, is accompanied with a circumscribed redness and little swelling, general coldness, great depression of spirits, and a sediment of uric acid in the urine.
 – It is known that ledum produces, and, therefore, cures in some cases an obstinate swelling of the feet.
 – The action which this drug exercises on the skin, differs from that of the arnica in this, that the former causes not so much a boil as a sort of blueish or violet-colored tuberosity, especially on the forehead, and an eczematous eruption, with a tinglina itching, that spread over the whole body, penetrates into the mouth, probably also into the air-passages, and occasions a spasmodic cough which is sometimes very violent, and which might be mistaken for whooping-cough.
 – The same phenomenon takes place with rhus and croton.
 – In a gouty subject, I have seen cough precede by two days the breaking out of vesicles upon the skin, which could not fail to suggest the use of ledum.
 – These vesicles which had probably existed on the bronchial mucous membrane, before showing themselves in the face, on the shoulders, etc., became quite apparent on the tongue, where they might be traced to the root of this organ.
 – The ledum eczema, and in this it acts like the rhus and croton eczema, is frequently seen concentrated on one leg, or (which is less frequently the case,) on both legs, at one and the same time.
 – It them shows itself from the instep, with or without itching or swelling, but very tenacious.
 – The cure of this unpleasant eruption almost always requires the alternate exhibition of ledum, rhus and croton ; we need not recur to it in speaking of these two latter drugs.
 – According to Hahnemann, camphor antidotes, wine heightens the effects of ledum, like those of arnica.
 – Rhus tox.* is however, the principal antidote of ledum.
Dr.Devendra Kumar MD(Homeo)
International Homeopathic Consultant at Ushahomeopathy
I am a Homeopathic Physician. I am practicing Homeopathy since 20 years. I treat all kinds of Chronic and Acute complaints with Homeopathic Medicines. Even Emergency conditions can be treated with Homeopathy if case is properly managed. know more about me and my research on my blog https://www.homeoresearch.com/about-me/
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