Sunday, November 17, 2013

Role of Homeopathy Viral Pneumonias and Viral Gastroenteritis.

Role of Homeopathy in reducing the  Morbidity and mortality rates in under five children due to Viral Pneumonias and Viral Gastroenteritis.

Prof G R Mohan
MD (HOM), P G Dip (Env Stud)
Devs Homoeopathic Medical College,
Devanagar, Ankireddypalli, Mandal Keesara -501301. District R R , A P

Abstract : Theme of the conference is the need of the hour , It’s a Challenging topic . I choose a topic with high  morbidity and mortality among under five children in relation to viral cause. Diarrhoea and pneumonia are the leading infectious causes of childhood morbidity and mortality. India, Nigeria, Democratic Republic of Congo, Pakistan and China collectively accounted for half of the total number of under-five deaths globally. Homeopathic medicines  can  play a great role in Viral Pneumonias and Viral Gastroenteritis cases if the treatment plan is given in a more methodical manner. Viral infections can be treated with confidence by the homeopathic system,  in the Allopathic system has no curative treatment for viral diseases except giving Antibiotics to prevent secondary Bacterial infections. 1 every system of medicine has got their own positive and negative role in treatment. Every Physicians main aim is to cure the Sick, by this he will be doing a service to the suffering Humanity. To create  awareness about  the seriousness of both Viral Pneumonias and Viral Gastroenteritis cases, author emphasized the need  of prevention of the above said diseases by good planning among rural health care personnel.

Introduction :
In India, around 1.7 million children die before reaching the age of 5 years in 2010, and more than half of them (52%) die in the first month of life. The major causes of deaths were pneumonia (24%), prematurity (20%) and diarrhea (13%) 2. Pneumonia and diarrhoea, which often occur simultaneously, account for 29 percent of deaths among children under five worldwide. Nearly 90 percent of the children who die from the two diseases live in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia. According to the IAP records, annually, India witnesses 45 million pneumonia cases among children below 5 years of which 0.37 million die due to pneumonia," added Dr Kapoor.


Source ref 3

Rotavirus is the most common causes of severe diarrheal disease in infants and young children globally, It's estimated to be responsible for approximately 527,000 deaths each year 4. Most Rotavirus disease in India occurs in the first two years of life. Due to persistence maternal antibodies Only 13% children younger than 6 months old  are commonly affected. Severity of  the disease is less common in this group. According to a  study Rotavirus-associated diarrheas are commonly seen  during the winter months ie  October to February months5 7 Poor Environmental Sanitation and personal hygiene  are the main factors for diarrheal disease .

Rotavirus was discovered in 1973, Rotavirus  is so named because of its characteristic circular outline with radiating spokes. The virus is transmitted by the fecal-oral route. It infects and damages the cells that line the small intestine and causes gastroenteritis.
Incubation period is about two days, severe disease characterized by vomiting followed by four to eight days of profuse watery diarrhoea, and low-grade fever. Dehydration is more common in Rotavirus infection than in most of those caused by bacterial pathogens, and is the most common cause of death related to rotavirus infection. As  Immunity develops with each infection, so subsequent infections are less severe; adults are rarely affected.
Homeopathic Perceptive :
Towards the last part of his life  Louis Pasteur's  confessed that germs may not be the cause of disease, h  but also the factors  like compromise host resistance and other environmental factors are important (agent ,host and environment  know as epidemiological tried ). Since homeopathic medicines stimulate the body's own defence,  rather than directly attack specific pathogens,  In recent research on viruses that attack chicken embryos, 8 of the 10 homeopathic medicines tested inhibited the growth of the viruses 50 to 100%. 11. This research is of particular significance because, in conventional medicine only few  number of drugs that have antiviral action, and none of these drugs are as safe as the homeopathic medicines.
Gastro Enteritis  cases either they appear as epidemic or individual , Their plan of treatment will be according to the  outbreak of an Epidemic. It is mandatory on the part of Homeopathic Physicians  to chose a Genus Epidemic along with treatment by giving more emphasis on  good  personal and Environmental hygiene.The following are few homeopathic medicines  Aconite , Arsenicum album, Aloe , Podophyllum Cinchona Veratrum album Mercurius solubilis and Sulphur.

Case : A baby aged about  18M  who was admitted in a local nursing home , with following symptoms passing liquid stools countless number, mild Fever, was on allopathic medication and intravenous rehydration without any improvement, on the request of Doctor friend  of the patient requested me to give Homoeopathic medicine. On the bases of the history given and objective symptoms presented  by doctor , Arsenicum album 30c 10 pills of 28 size pills were mixed in one cup of mineral water  and advised the mother to give 5ml of liquid medicine every 30 minutes, and advised mother and father of the baby to check the consistence of stool, number of stools in one hour. After the third dose of Ars Alb consistence of stool has progressively turned to semisolid then the number of stools came down progressively . Child partially recovered within 12 hours. Totally recovered in the next 12 hours according to attending Pediatrician.
Discussion : It’s an acute case in which allopathic treatment not responding, Arsenicum album selected on the bases of symptoms presented by a Doctor friend of the patient. As it is acute case doses were repeated, ultimately child recovered from death.   

Viral  Pneumonias :
Pneumonia is often caused by viral infections, including Respiratory syncytial virus, the parainfluenza virus, adenovirus, and the flu. Viral pneumonia occurs in about 200 million people a year which includes about 100 million children and 100 million adults.
In infants and toddlers viruses are the most common cause of pneumonia, accounting for approximately 90% of all lower respiratory infections.Children with cardiac problems , HIV infection and children with  chemotherapy for cancer who are having Low Vitality  suffer from serious type Viral pneumonia .A virus will reach the lungs by droplets, the virus invades the cells lining the airways and the alveoli. This invasion often leads to cell death either through direct killing by the virus or by self-destruction through apoptosis. Further damage to the lungs occurs when the immune system responds to the infection. 
Clinical features in newborn   will be a poor intake of  feed , irritability, tachypnea, retractions, grunting (The grunt occurs because the glottal stops the flow of air for a brief period , halting the movement of the lungs and their surrounding or supporting structures.) And hypoxemia .Grunting suggests a lower respiratory tract disease. In infants  Cough is the most common symptom of pneumonia , along with tachypnea, retractions, and hypoxemia. These may be accompanied by congestion, fever, irritability, and decreased feeding. In older infants grunting may be less common; however, tachypnea, retractions, and hypoxemia are common and may be accompanied by a persistent cough, congestion, fever, irritability, and decreased feeding. But according to the World Health Organization (WHO) respiratory rate thresholds for identifying children with pneumonia are as follows:
·         Children younger than 2 months: Greater than or equal to 60 breaths/min
·         Children aged 2-11 months: Greater than or equal to 50 breaths/min
·         Children aged 12-59 months: Greater than or equal to 40 breaths/min 12

Contribution of specific pathogens to severe episodes of, and deaths from, childhood diarrhea and pneumonia, by WHO region 6
African region
American region
Eastern Mediterranean region
European region
Southeast Asian region
Western Pacific region
Severe diarrhea episodes
Episodes (×103)
2557 (1901–3026)
1129 (833–1330)
1344 (990–1576)
660 (488–781)
2382 (1753–2790)
1781 (1312–2090)
9853 (7277–11593)
Proportion of all severe episodes (%)
Vibrio cholerae:
Episodes (×103)
38 (28–45)
416 (306–488)
2 (2–3)
456 (336–536)
Proportion of all severe episodes (%)
Diarrhea deaths
Deaths (×103)
95 (52·5–151·3)
2·6 (1·9–5·6)
30·2 (20·1–48·0)
1·6 (1·1–2·8)
58·1 (47·7–74·7)
5·5 (2·0–7·7)
192·7 (133·1–284·4)
Proportion of diarrheal deaths (%)
V cholerae:
Deaths (×103)
1·4 (0·8–2·3)
10·2 (8·4–13·2)
0·1 (0·02–0·1)
11·7 (7·9–16·8)
Proportion of diarrheal deaths (%)
Severe pneumonia episodes
Streptococcus pneumoniae:
Episodes (×103)
774 (453–1069)
127 (74–175)
349 (204–482)
70 (41–97)
1001 (585–1382)
263 (154–363)
2585 (1511–3568)
Proportion of all severe episodes (%)
Haemophilus influenzae:
Episodes (×103)
130 (0–312)
14 (0–34)
52 (0–124)
15 (0–35)
291 (0–698)
72 (0–172)
574 (0–1376)
Proportion of all severe episodes (%)
Episodes (×103)
172 (86–307)
84 (56–126)
155 (57–500)
52 (33–76)
273 (78–1094)
246 (105–597)
982 (414–2699)
Proportion of all severe episodes (%)
Pneumonia deaths
S pneumoniae:
Deaths (×103)
177 (94–245)
7 (4–10)
55 (29–77)
6 (3–8)
146 (77–202)
20 (11–28)
411 (218–569)
Proportion of pneumonia deaths (%)
H influenzae:
Deaths (×103)
70 (9–125)
2 (0–4)
19 (3–35)
3 (0–5)
92 (13–156)
12 (2–21)
197 (27–345)
Proportion of pneumonia deaths (%)
Deaths (×103)
60 (16–71)
3 (1–4)
19 (5–22)
0 (0–1)
49 (13–58)
7 (2–8)
137 (38–163)
Proportion of pneumonia deaths (%)



Treatment :
Antibiotics do not  have a role in  viral pneumonia. Antiviral medication only works against influenza pneumonia .All viral pneumonia patients must receive supportive care with oxygen and close observation.9,10
Case : Baby girl aged 22 months was admitted in my IPD ward , it was known case of Cerebral palsy , two days after admission she started coughing, fever, with slight  restlessness, this was before we planned to treat  cerebral palsy, Ipecacuanha 30c, ten pills were given and asked the mother of baby to mix the medicated globules in 15 ml mineral water and asked her to give 2 teaspoons of medicated water every 2 hours. There was not much improvement but rattling started , the child becoming drowsy Anti tart 30 c was given in liquid form and asked the mother to give two teaspoons every 30 minutes, and I advised her to take the baby to a specialized hospital as it is a case is going from bad to worse as it is viral pneumonia, after giving three doses of the medicine, the mother of the child  took discharge from the hospital to take the baby for better treatment. As it is linked with financial expenditure she was moving from one hospital to another, parallel giving a homeopathic remedy which was given in hospital. To the parents surprise child recovered, the rattling was reduced , cough and drowsiness reduced after 36 hours after initial dose. This  information was received after a weak through the parents of the baby.
Summary : In both the cases were very serious nature, in both cases Homoeopathy saved the babies from death, as cost of treatment in a conventional system is very high beyond the reach of the poor,  along with  giving good supportive treatment  with homeopathic treatment, we can reduce the morbidity and mortality of these dreadful Viral diseases.

References :

6) Published online April 12, 2013
      7) Mukherjee AMullick SDeb AKPanda SChawla-Sarkar M., First report of human rotavirus          G8P[4] gastroenteritis in India: evidence of ruminants-to-human zoonotic transmission, J Med Virol. 2013 Mar;85(3):537-45. doi: 10.1002/jmv.23483. Epub 2012 Dec 21
11) L.M. Singh and Girish Gupa, "Antiviral Efficacy of Homoeopathic Drugs Against Animal Viruses,"British Homoeopathic Journal, 74(3):168-174, July, 1985