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Why detailed case history is required in homeopathy

If you have ever taken a homeopathic treatment, you must be aware that for the first consultation with a doctor you need to spend at least 45 minutes to 1 hour in most of the cases. This is because a homeopathic doctor takes your detailed case history during the first consultation. You must be wondering why all these details are required. Let us find out in this article.


Homeopathy is a completely different medical science when compared to allopathic or Ayurveda and its medicines and treatment principals are completely different. Sometimes you must be feeling that first consultation in homeopathic treatment is very troublesome as it takes more time and you need to answer all the questions asked by a doctor in detail about your health issues, personality, likes-dislikes, food preferences etc. You sometimes hate to think and figure out all those minute details which you sometimes yourself are not aware of. Sometimes people also take these questions lightly and answer whatever comes to their mind. Also, you must be thinking that why on earth so many details are required just to prescribe medicines. But believe me, this detailed case history is really required by a homeopathic doctor in order to prescribe right medicines. A doctor will only ask those questions which he or she feels may help in selecting the right medicines.

Now let's try to figure out reasons behind the need of detailed case history in homeopathy.

Reasons for taking detailed case history

  • To know the personality type - In homeopathy different medicines or remedies are suited to people with different personality types. Each homeopathic remedy has a human personality picture which is described in detail in homeopathic materia medica. Materia medica is a book which contains detailed characteristics of all the homeopathic remedies available. So even for the same problem or disease homeopathic remedy can work for one person and may not work for another person if their personality type is different which is always possible.

    Personality here means both physical and mental/ emotional fronts. For example, if a remedy is suited for a well built and extrovert person then the same remedy may not work if it is given to a thin and lean looking introvert person even if their disease is same. Thus a homeopathic doctor needs to match the remedy to your personality for it to be effective. Hence he needs to ask a lot of questions to you for knowing personality.

  • To know the cause of the disease - In contrast to allopathic medicines homeopathic medicines do not treat the problem but it treats the cause of the problem. When the cause is treated the problem gets cured by itself. Thus it is very important for a homeopathic doctor to know the reason behind the problem. Also, homeopathic medicines are such that for the same problem there are different sets of medicines based on different causes of the problem. Hence in case taking doctor often asks as to how and when the illness started and what as per you triggered the problem.

    For example, if a person has a headache for a few days, the allopathic approach would be to keep a headache under control by giving painkillers. In homeopathy, on the other hand, the attempt is made by a doctor to know the cause of the headache like whether it is due to gas and acidity or lack of sleep or stress etc. Based on this suitable homeopathic remedies are prescribed. Hence a doctor needs to do a lot of questioning of the patient to know the exact cause of the illness.

  • To figure out the potency of medicine - Homeopathic remedies come in varying strengths which are termed as its potencies. Potencies are named as 6X,12X...., 30C, 200C.... 1M, 10M etc. Different kinds of problems require different potencies of homeopathic medicine. Sometimes for the same medicine low potency may not work while high potency works. Potency selection also depends on many factors like duration of the problem, patient sensitivity, severity of the problem etc.

    Hence a homeopathic doctor needs to carefully analyze the health problem and all its symptoms as well as patient personality and sensitivity to make a correct potency selection. Doctors generally do not prescribe high potencies straight away and always start with lower potencies first to be sure that medicines they have selected is correct. Later if medicine suits the patient they can switch to the higher potencies.

  • To minimise Homeopathic aggravation - In homeopathy sometimes existing symptoms of the patient gets aggravated after taking the remedy. Sometimes there is similar aggravation which means that symptoms of the existing problem are magnified. At other times there can be dissimilar aggravation which means a completely new set of symptoms which are different from the existing problem may occur in the patient after taking the remedy. This is called homeopathic aggravation. This happens when the potency of medicine selected proves to be too strong for the patient's sensitivity level. Different people have different sensitivity and hence their tolerance towards homeopathic potencies will differ. Hence a doctor needs to be careful in selecting potency for the patient so that it does not cause aggravation and discomfort to the patient. Hence a doctor can ask questions to the patient to get an idea of his or her sensitivity.

  • To select from the wide variety of medicines - In homeopathy for each problem there are many medicines available each suited for different symptoms of the same problem. For example for fever in homeopathy, there will be many medicines. For sudden and high fever there will be one medicine while for gradual and low fever there will be different medicine. Again for fever with a cough, there will be other medicine. Hence a homeopathic doctor carefully needs to understand the exact symptoms you are experiencing and then prescribe the correct homeopathic remedy.

  • To know the mental and emotional state - In addition to the physical level, homeopathic remedies also work at mental and emotional level. Sometimes for the same problem medicines will be different for the patient with different mental and emotional state of mind. Hence it is also important for a homeopathic doctor to know about the mental and emotional state of the patient.


Hence we see that the reason for taking a detailed case history in homeopathy is to know in detail the patient personality type, sensitivity, mental state, full history and symptoms of illness etc. With all these details a homeopathic doctor gets help in selecting the right homeopathic remedy with the right potency from a large pool of medicines available. A patient should ensure that he is patient and cooperates during homeopathic case-taking during the first visit as it is for his own benefit. If required information is not given properly by the patient, then there are chances that the remedy selection may not be proper and it may not be effective.

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Author: DR.N.V. Srinivasa Rao15 Apr 2018 Member Level: Platinum   Points : 5

Homoeopathy medicines are very sensitive and sometimes as you start using initially the characteristics of the disease will get aggravated and the person should be able to tolerate that initial hiccup. To know the nature of the patient and their inherited qualities play an important role in deciding on the type of medicine and the strength. Unlike in allopathy, the homeopathy medicine will try to correlate all the disorders to a common ailment and they will correct it so that all the disorders will be controlled. What I am trying to say is that if you go to an allopathic doctor he will write one medicine for a headache and another medicine for body pains and one more medicine for fever. But in homeopathy, they will get to the root cause of all these problems and will give medicine to cure that. This is the main reason they ask you so many questions when you go to them for treatment.

Author: Reena Upadhya16 Apr 2018 Member Level: Diamond   Points : 9

Homeopathy system of medicine was originated in the 18th century and the approach it takes to heal patients is by stimulating healing process of the body. In this system, certain substances are given to the patients in very dilute quantities in order to heal them. These substances can make a healthy person sick but since they are given in very small amount and that too in diluted concentration, they seem to stimulate body's internal healing process. Homeopathy believes in the principle that more the dilution of the substance that is given, more powerfully it will heal the sickness.

Another important but peculiar approach that is seen to be practiced in this form of medicine is that practitioners believe that sickness is specific to a person. It means that two people who exhibit same types of signs and symptoms will not be given the same type of medicine. It is not at all necessary that both of them are suffering from the same sort of sickness. This is the reason that unlike in any other medicines, homeopathic practitioners ask for the detailed case history. The kind of lifestyle a person is enjoying, his everyday activities, his diet, his personality traits etc all will be taken into an account before writing them a prescription.

Visiting a homeopathy clinic is very different when compared with visiting of any other clinics or hospitals. Homeopathy doctors spend a lot more time with their patients enquiring about everything which is called as taking their case history and based on this sheet itself they will determine what are the triggering factors which are causing such signs and symptoms in the patient and has given way to illness in them. Case history session can even last for an hour or two. Through this session, they try to get a full picture of patient's health and where he stands in terms of physical and mental health level.

Author: Umesh17 Apr 2018 Member Level: Diamond   Points : 6

Homeopathy is an alternative system of medicine and has got a totally different approach and philosophy of treating an ailment. The detailed information about the patient and his symptoms in totality including his habits and preferences are acquired by a homeopathic doctor before prescribing the medicine in the appropriate doses.

The homeopathic medicine system was proposed and pushed by a single person and many people joined this stream later and it became a worldwide phenomenon.

Unfortunately, it is not backed by the same scientific temperament as has been instrumental in the case of modern medical sciences so the authenticity of the homeopathic system is always seen with a tinge of suspicion.

It is basically the faith and belief of the people that this alternative system is successfully pulling on with it's glory. Few people have sound knowledge of the detailed analysis in diagnosing the ailment and it is also possible that due to that error of judgement many times these medicines do not come to their expectations.

Author: Natarajan18 Apr 2018 Member Level: Gold   Points : 3

Homeopathy is a well-established branch of treatment. The case history is important in modern medical practice too. The doctors need to ask questions about personal life, family life, medication history, allergies, previous illness, current illness etc. An obstetrician will go into the details of pregnancy and childbirth-related issues in the patient and her blood relatives. A psychiatrist would assess more about the patients emotional and mental state.

Not all allopathic medicines treat symptoms only. They do treat the primary condition too. For instance, for someone having a urinary tract infection, a culture is asked for and the doctor gives antibiotics based on the results that are specific to the patient. There would be similar examples of disease-specific medications in allopathy too as in homeopathy.

Author: Sheo Shankar Jha18 Apr 2018 Member Level: Diamond   Points : 10

Homeopathy is a branch dealing with different approaches for a different set of people. In Homoeopathy, there is no specific mention of the disease with which a patient is suffering from but a detailed study of the mental frame of the patient, his likeness, dislikeness, temperamental emotions and his mental faculties are taken into account prior to selection of any medicine with a requisite potency.

To start with a treatment in Homoeopathy, you need to go through a detailed inquiry from your Homoeopath lasting one to one and half hour. In this session, you have to be honest enough in your responses since any aberration or suppression of the fact would lead to a wrong selection of the medicine. The Homoeopath may not indicate the medicine prescribed for the disease and in that event further query relating to disease from other Homoeopath would not be possible. This, you may describe as the major drawback of the existing Homoeopathic system.

Now talking about the efficacies of the chosen medicine, one drop or a few globules containing appropriate medicine may work wonders in the system of the patient. There would be a manifestation of slight aggravation initially but the symptoms would disappear in a couple of hours and the healing effect would continue thus giving a permanent cure of the disease.

One would wonder how a single drop of the medicine can permeate in the different cells of the body giving the patient a scope for the permanent cure.

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