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2011 March

My heart runs away with me; a case of Lycopus virginicus

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by Alex Leupen

LycopusA 38 year old woman came for palpitations, in October 2005. In the past, she had responded well to Staphysagria 200K for recurrent cystitis. The palpitations are worse at night, especially around 4:00 am; they wake her up. They are also worse after exciting experiences; they start quickly, stop quickly, and give the feeling as though she has been running fast.

In the past, she has been treated with carbimazol for hyperthyroidism. The palpitations remind her of this period, since they have the same symptoms. She calls it a “hyper-feeling”, as though she is dissociated, standing outside of herself. 

She has a busy job; she and her partner have their own business in the design and export of wooden products.

Generals:
Desires: cheese, French cheese, clove cheese, red wine, bread, chocolate
Aversions: meat, coffee
Thirst: very thirsty
Menses: irregular cycles; sometimes they come every two weeks and then sometimes not for 6 months. When she has a period, it lasts for 2 – 7 days, sometimes with profuse blood loss, sometimes with very little. Sometimes, she has hot flushes with palpitations and perspiration, with pressure in her occiput, followed by a desire for herb tea, especially lemon verbena or mint.

Personality:
She is very creative; she does a lot with oil paint and ceramics and makes her own paint with various pigments. She is very sensitive to the moods of others and picks up on things; this is something she has learned as the daughter of a deaf mother. She likes to touch people when talking. She is happy and cheerful and she does not like arguments, much preferring to be in agreement. She loves to travel.

Life history:
She is the only child of a mother who had suffered from a war trauma. After the  September 11 attacks in New York, her mother packed her bags and disappeared for weeks until she was finally found again. She does not want to have contact with anyone, not even with her own daughter, so the patient waits until her mother takes the initiative.

Observation:
She is very lively, open, and communicative; cheerful and laughing a lot. She often wears black clothing. I have noticed that she creates an almost euphoric atmosphere; I often find myself dissolving into helpless laughter.

Analysis:
This is a case of Lycopus virginicus (American wolf's paw) from the Lamiaceae family (formerly called the Labiatae, or lip flowers). A characteristic of Lycopus is hyperthyroidism with palpitations. According to Jan Scholten, patients needing Lamiales remind us of Phosphorus: sensitive and communicative. There is often a certain exhilaration, sometimes sensuality. The plants themselves stimulates the senses, especially through their smell and taste: thyme, lavender, peppermint, basil, oregano, lemon verbena, sage, etc. Sometimes, they are a “lust for the eyes”; one thinks of the lavender fields of Provence. Remarkable in her case is the desire for, and the improvement from, tea from mint or lemon verbena, which are both from the lamiales family.

When I told her which plant I had prescribed for her, she said enthusiastically that her whole balcony is full of pots of basil, verbena, and mint. Her whole story is filled with the atmosphere and the scent of the lip-flowers. The euphoria during the consultation, both for her and for me, confirmed this prescription.

After the remedy, her palpitations disappeared completely; she had not felt that good for years, ever since the hyperthyroidism. She has remained well for the last five years.

Photo: Wikimedia Commons
Lycopus europaeus. Gouda, Netherlands

 

 

 


Keywords: hyperthyroidism, palpitations, happy, cheerful, euphoria
Remedies: Lycopus virginicus

This article was originally published in www.interhomeopathy.org

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