Melilotus and Indigo: two short cases
A woman in her mid-thirties came for chronic migraines, which were becoming increasingly worse. There was hardly a week without a severe migraine; she tried to struggle on at her job as a teacher despite the pain, which made her vomit. When she arrived for the consultation, she was again in the middle of a migraine attack; I offered her to lay on a mattress, instead of harassing her with questions. She seemed to go into a trance state, whispering in a tiny voice: “They are coming.” When I asked her, who was coming, she answered: “The men in black boots.” When she was finally well enough to speak, she said that this was an image that haunted her from time to time; having to hide away in the dark, while “dangerous people” searched for her. Her red face during the migraine, her tiny voice (even when well), her family background during the war years in Holland, and her deplorable past history with a sadistic brother made me think of Melilotus, which has the rubric: “fears to raise the voice”. Her situation resembled that of someone who has to hide, tense and silent, in order not to be taken away, like the Jews during the Holocaust. She was given repeated doses of Melilotus and reported that not only her migraines had disappeared but her ability to “speak up for herself” had improved. A craving for sweets, which she had not previously mentioned, also disappeared.
A teenage boy came due to chronic fatigue and an inability to concentrate, which he had had for most of his life but which had become much more severe after a bout of mononucleosis. Despite being bright and willing to learn, he could hardly get through his schoolwork and was usually in bed straight after dinner. He was pale, thin, slouched over, and exhausted. He came from a Jewish background and seemed to carry the weight of the Jews’ history on his shoulders. The typical post- mononucleosis remedies, such as Carcinocinum, Gelsemium, and Baptisia did nothing for him. Taking his aversion to peas into consideration, I looked for a remedy in the Leguminosae family. It was not until he had an acute ailment, however, that the right remedy became evident. He developed a left-sided facial neuralgia, which responded quickly to Indigo, one of the few Leguminosae with that complaint. After the remedy, his energy also increased, as well as his ability to concentrate. “The fog has lifted!” he said. He is now one of the last in the family to go to bed.
Keywords: migraines, speaking up for oneself, chronic fatigue, concentration difficulties, left sided facial neuralgia
Remedies: Indigofera tinctoria, Melilotus officinalis