– VERMEULEN Frans,
Society is no comfort
To one not sociable.
CLASSIFICATION The alkaline-earth metal strontium got its name from its discovery in 1790 in the ore from the lead mines of the Scottish town Strontian. It is the fourth element in group 2 of the periodic table, preceded by beryllium, magnesium, and calcium, and followed by barium and radium. Not occurring free in nature, it is found mainly as the minerals strontianite [strontium carbonate] and celestite [strontium sulphate], or in small quantities with calcium or barium minerals. Strontium composes about 0.03% of the earth’s crust. Mexico and Spain are currently the major producing countries, accounting for 36% and 30% of world production respectively.
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FEATURES Strontium closely resembles calcium, magnesium, and barium. It is soft like lead – and softer than calcium – and decomposes water more vigorously than calcium does. The metal is malleable and ductile and a good conductor of electricity. Freshly cut strontium has a silvery appearance, but rapidly assumes a yellowish oxide film, so that it has to be kept under mineral oil to prevent oxidation. The finely divided metal ignites spontaneously in air. Volatile strontium salts impart a crimson colour to flames, which makes them an ingredient in red signal flares and pyrotechnics. Strontium-90 – with a half-life of 28 years – is the principal health hazard in radioactive fallout since it replaces calcium in bone, damages bone marrow and induces leukemia. Because minerals in bone have a slow turnover, strontium-90, once absorbed, may remain in the body for a considerable part of a person’s lifetime.
USES One of the major uses of strontium [carbonate] is in cathode ray tubes for colour computer monitors and televisions. Strontium compounds are also used in ferrite magnets, in magnetic memory systems, in electrolytic zinc refining [to remove lead impurities], in the manufacture of rayon, in sugar refining, and in soaps and greases. Controlled amounts of radioactive strontium have been used as a treatment for bone cancer. The heat of its radioactive decay can be converted to electricity for lightweight, long-lived, nuclear-electric power sources as in space vehicles, remote weather stations, and navigational buoys. 1,2
FOOD There is no evidence that strontium is essential for animal and human life. “It behaves as calcium and accompanies it in foods rich in calcium, e.g. milk, grains, fresh vegetables. Dietary strontium, like calcium, is concentrated in the bones. The quantity of strontium in biological material is usually about one-thousandth that of calcium. Cow’s milk is richer in both strontium and calcium than human milk. Bottle-fed babies tend to receive intakes of strontium some four times greater than those breast-fed. Some of it is retained. Breast-fed babies excrete more than they receive because their urinary volume is increased. In all babies, the ratio strontium to calcium is higher in the urine and faeces than in the bones. These results suggest that in infants at least the body discriminates against strontium in favour of calcium. In general, the strontium level of plant foods is higher than those of animal products except when these contain bones. The mineral tends to be concentrated in the bran rather than the endosperm of grains and in the peel of root vegetables. The vital source of strontium is Brazil nuts. Milk and milk products contribute a major percentage of the strontium in a mixed diet. Amounts between 11 and 32% of the total daily strontium intakes come from these food sources. UK diets provide from 0.7 to 1.1 mg strontium daily; those in India contain from 3.1 to 4.7 mg per day, and in the USA 1.2-2.9, 2.1-2.4, and 0.79-2.43 mg have been found to be the usual daily intake in three different institutions. Drinking water can contribute a substantial portion of strontium intake. In Israel, for example, the drinking water can provide from 1.0 to 1.6 mg of the mineral per litre so that a usual water intake of 1500 to 2500 ml in the diet will provide between 1.5 and 4.0 mg strontium daily. These levels of strontium in water are unusual, however, since most drinking water contains less than 1 mg of the mineral per litre.”3
PHYSIOLOGY “In general the metabolism and distribution of strontium mimics that of calcium with the major sites of retention being the skeleton, teeth and aorta. An adult contains 323 mg of the mineral of which 99% is present in the bones. These levels increase with age in bones, lungs and aorta. Strontium occurs in the enamel and dentin of teeth in concentrations similar to those in bones. It is deposited primarily before eruption and during tooth calcification. Levels in bone are 110 mg per g; those in dental enamel are 120 mg per g. Although the metabolism of strontium is similar to that of calcium it is not identical. Absorption from the gastrointestinal tract, transfer across the placenta, excretion through the kidney and transfer into milk are all more efficient with calcium than strontium. Parallels between the two minerals are as follows: [I] Calcium and strontium are better absorbed by young than old animals. [ii] The stresses of pregnancy and lactation increase the absorption of both minerals. [iii] The duodenum is the greatest site of absorption of both minerals but the ileum represents the most effective site. [iv] Vitamin D, lactose and the amino acids lysine and argenine enhance the absorption of both calcium and strontium. [v] Fibres like alginates [from seaweed] and cellulose [from plants] can depress the absorption of both minerals. [vi] Parathyroid hormone accelerates the resorption of bone strontium and bone calcium. [vii] When magnesium is deficient, both calcium and strontium absorption is depressed. Food decreases strontium absorption and fasting enhances it. Raising low calcium intakes in the diet reduces strontium retention. Usually intestinal strontium absorption by adults ranges from 5 to 25% with age changes varying from over 90% in the very young to less than 10% in the elderly. Some epidemiological evidence shows that strontium may have a protective effects against dental caries. The evidence is based on an association between caries incidence and the strontium concentration in drinking water. … A human study found that strontium content was higher in decayed than in healthy teeth of Australian children. Strontium appears to have no anti-plaque activity. One study suggests that it may be helpful in the treatment of osteoporosis. It may also protect the energy-producing apparatus of body cells.”4
PLANTS Dr. Duke’s Phytochemical and Ethnobotanical Databases lists the following plant species as having the highest amount of strontium: Carya glabra [pignut hickory; in shoot]; Diospyros virginiana [American persimmon; in leaf]; Carya ovata [shagbark hickory; in shoot]; Brassica oleracea var. capitata [cabbage; in leaf]; Sassafras albidum [sassafras; in leaf]; Rhus glabra [smooth sumac; in stem]; Lactuca sativa [lettuce; in shoot]; Quercus alba [white oak; in plant]; Juniperus virginiana [red cedar; in shoot]; Symphoricarpos orbiculatus [buckbush; in stem]; Petroselinum crispum [parsley; in plant]; Cichorium endivia [endive, escarole; in shoot]; Citrus paradisi [grapefruit; in fruit]; Asparagus officinalis [asparagus; in shoot]; Allium cepa [onion; in bulb]; Daucus carota [carrot; in root]; Lycopersicon esculentum [tomato; in fruit].
PROVINGS ••  Hartlaub and Trinks – 5 provers; method: unknown.
••  Rajan Sankaran – 10 provers [5 females, 5 males], 1994; method: single dose of 30c, observation period four weeks.
 Lide, Handbook of Chemistry and Physics.  Encycl. Britannica. [3-4]Mervyn, Vitamins and Minerals.
Vasomotor nerves [circulation; heart; kidneys]. Marrow. Ankles. * Right side. Left side.
Worse: COLD; changes. Uncovering; undressing. Walking. Sprains. Bleeding. Evening. Night. Darkness. Rubbing. After lying down and rising again. Exertion.
Better: Heat and light [sun; wraps; baths].
* Seems to be a combination of Calc. and Bell.
M Active and sociable.
• “Vital people. Take a lot of social responsibilities, like groups and courses.” [Morrison]
Self-centred. [reported by 3 provers S]
• “Selfish. Don’t care for anyone. … Have become self-centred. … Selfish behaviour and attitude.” [S]
M Aversion to DARKNESS.
M Desire for company, especially friends.
• “Feeling he needs the faith of his friends, and he must not break this faith. Feeling unwanted by friends, cheated by friends and desire for one faithful friend. Feeling he can understand his friend’s problems, and is always in contact with a friend in trouble.” [S]
Dependence on others for support / guidance.
• “[My little girl] gives me strength and it would be impossible without her. … I feel insecure. People disappoint me. I cannot rely on people in important matters. … If I am not strong, then I am dependent. I have to rely on other people and it is not healthy. … I remember I needed guidance and reassurance from my mother from a young age but she could not give it to me. … I did not have the strength to make decisions and execute them. It was her inability to give me what I needed inside of me. They did not help me to feel secure, by helping me find out where to go, by showing me a map. I was not reassured. I was not helped.”1
M Delusion being followed / about to receive injury.
• “While lying on my side at night had the fear as if some hand would come from behind and do harm to me. So I tried to lie on my back. Fear increased so much that I asked my mother if I could sleep next to her. It took very long to fall asleep when I was alone. Fear of darkness also. … Constant fear as if someone is following me, as if the person behind me will harm me, or say something bad. Fear of going into lonely place by myself; feel as if someone will come and hurt me. Have become suspicious of people around me when in a public place.” [S]
Bad mood; quarrelsome.
Retains anger for a long time.
• “Very fretful; is inclined to beat everything that comes in his way.” [Allen]
• “Smashes his way through obstructions.” [Gibson]
Irritable from trifles; from contradiction; from noise and talking. [3 provers S]
• “Very irritable from trifles, very angry and quarrelsome with family members. Anger from opposition or when someone disagrees. Become quiet from anger, unable to speak a right word. Feel I am in the right. Want to beat them.”
Increased. [3 provers S; 1 prover HT]
• After dinner, hunger again, which, however, soon disappears without eating anything.” [Allen]
• “Appetite very much increased; can eat again after a full meal.”
• “Increased appetite in spite of full stomach, but no hunger. … Appetite increased; desire to eat all the time.” [S]
Lost. [3 provers HT]
• “Loss of appetite; nothing had a natural taste except milk and black bread.” [Allen]
Great sensitiveness to cold in general and to DRAFTS of air.
G FLUSHES of heat; in face [and pulsation of carotids].
Yet averse to uncovering.
G CONGESTION to head, face, chest.
HEAT of head and heat or redness of face.
G Profuse PERSPIRATION at night.
G > Warm stove.
> Heat of sun.
G < EVENING after lying down [= starting, anxiety, heat]. < NIGHT. G < WALKING. [headache; congestion; leucorrhoea; dyspnoea; pressure in sternum] G < Rubbing. G < MENOPAUSE. G Rising of blood pressure. • "Distress about or around the heart, as if pressed upon." • "As of a load on chest." • "Heart feels smothered." ARTERIOSCLEROSIS. G FLEETING pains; seemingly in bones. • "Many of the pains of Strontium appear like phantoms, so that she can scarcely tell the place where they are." [Allen] G Pains increase and decrease gradually. G BONE affections [particularly FEMUR]. Especially of scrophulous children. And Diarrhoea. P Headache; starting in cervical region [tension in nape of neck], extending to head. > Heat [heat of sun!; infra-red lamp; wraps].
Violent headache > hot drinks. [S]
Throbbing pain in frontal region. [S; 4 provers]
P Face very pale or bright red.
REDNESS of face from physical exertion, esp. walking.
P Sprained or puffed ankles.
Swelling of ankle remaining after a SPRAIN.
WEAKNESS of ANKLES.
[One prover in Sankaran’s proving experienced: “Weak and insecure feeling in joints, esp. of the lower limbs; painful to walk further. … Repeated sprains of the legs, esp. left knee-joint.”]
* [HT] = Hartlaub and Trinks. [S] = Sankaran.
1 Dafna Levanon and Adina Pertsovsky, Homeopathy during pregnancy and childbirth, Case 2; HL 1/00.
Desire for amusement [1S]. Anger, from noise [1S], so angry that he could have stabbed anyone , sudden , violent . Busy . Desire for company, of a faithful friend [1S]. Delusions, objects seem covered with blood [1H], being deceived [1S], of being neglected [1S], people, as if someone is behind him [1S]. Fear, of dark , of new persons [1S], of robbers [1S], of strangers [1S]. Forsaken feeling[1S]. Desire for light . Selfishness [1S]. Sensitive to noise [1S].
After animated talking . With obscuration of vision .
Pain, > warm drinks [1S], drawing, > heat of sun [1/1]. Pulsating, > closing eyes [1S], < light [1S], from noise [1S], from odours [1S], with palpitations [1S]. Eye Itching, > cold water [1S]; inner canthi .
Colours, objects seem to have red and blue margins, after rubbing eyes [1H]. Flashes [of light], after eye operation [1H].
Obstruction, right side, then left [1S].
Numbness, on waking early in morning [1H].
Pain, < cold air [1S], < cold drinks [1S], > warm drinks [1S].
Heat of feet in evening after lying down [1/1]. Pain, as if sprained, ankle, with oedema [2/1].
After eating > .
Itching when pain ceases [1; Ign.; Lyc.].
Exposure to sun > .
* Repertory additions: [H] = Hering; [S] = Sankaran.
Note: The repertory symptom “Photophobia after operation” should be “Photopsia [flashes of light before eyes], remaining after an operation, esp. when objects appear covered with blood.”
Aversion: : Meat.
Desire: : Beer; black bread [= rye bread]; milk. : Apples [S]; brandy; buttermilk [S]; cheese [S]; cold water [S]; pizza [S]; pungent [S]; sour [S]; spicy [S].
Worse: : Wine [= headache].
Better: : Tobacco.
* Repertory additions from Rajan Sankaran, Provings.