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Cocculus Indicus - General symptoms

Indian Cockle, Cocculus, Coccul, Cocc.

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HPUS indication of Cocculus Indicus: Motion sickness

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Below are the main rubriks (i.e strongest indications or symptoms) of Cocculus Indicus in traditional homeopathic usage, not approved by the FDA.



Flatulent colic about midnight.

awakened by incessant accumulation of flatulence, which distended the abdomen, causing oppressive pain here and there.

some was passed without remarkable relief, whilst new flatus constantly collected for several hours.

he was obliged to lie on one side and on the other in order to obtain relief (after twenty hours),.

Menstruation eight days too early, with distension of the abdomen, and pain in the upper region of the abdomen, not only on every motion (every stooping was painful), but also while sitting, as if the inner parts were suffering from the sharp pressure of a stone.

the parts are painful to external touch, as if there were an internal ulcer,.

Within the sphere of action of Cocculus Indicus are many spasmodic, and paretic affections, notably those affecting one-half of the body. Affects the cerebrum, will not cure convulsive seizures proceeding from the spinal cord ( A. E. Hinsdale.) Painful contracture of limbs and trunk; tetanus. Many of the evil Effects of night-watching are relieved by it. It shows a special attraction For light-haired females, especially during pregnancy, causing much nausea and backache. Unmarried and childless women, sensitive and romantic girls, etc. All its symptoms are worse riding in a carriage or on shipboard; hence its use in seasickness. Sensation of Hollowness, or emptiness, as if parts had gone to sleep. Feels too weak to talk loud.

Acute senses with heavy or paralytic, muscular relaxation

Too weak to hold up head, stand or even speak


Tremor; intention; of head; lower jaw

Cramps; in masseters; abdomen; dysmenorrhoeal; in heart

Benumbed Spasms



Weak, nervous women, worse menses


Vomiting with syncope

Hysterical asthma


Sensitive to cold

Dazed; things seem unreal

Slow grasp

Easily offended

Extremely sad, taciturn and peevish

VERTIGO; in forehead; in AM

; with nausea; with palpitation; worse raising head

Heavy head

Occiput; aches; worse lying on it; better bending backward; OPENS AND SHUTS

Throat tickles; with lachrymation

Speaks or swallows with difficulty


Nausea; rising into head


Train and sea sickness

Abdomen seems full of sharp stones; bloated

Colic; twisting (wind); nervous; hysterical; with faintness; with salivation

Clutching in uterus

Depleting menses; worse standing on tip toe; replaced by gushes of leucorrhoea

Weak neck

SPINAL WEAKNESS; worse lumbar; worse walking


Limbs go to sleep, worse grasping objects

Alternations between arms

Humerus feels broken

Hands numb; alternately hot and cold

Knees weak; cracking

Clumsy gait

Sleepless, from mental or physical exhaustion


Low fever


Cocculus Indicus. N. O. Menispermaceae. A tincture is prepared from the powdered seeds, which contain a crystallisable principle Picrotoxine (which see), a powerful poison.

cracking in. Memory, weak. Mental excitement, effects of. Menstrual headache. Menstruation, painful. Overstrain, bodily or mental. Palpitation. Paralysis. Parotitis. Phthiriasis. Rheumatism. Riding in carriage, effects of. Sea-sickness. Sleep, affections from loss of. Somnolence. Spasms. Spinal irritation. Tympany. Vertigo. Vomiting.

Cocculus has been used from ancient times as a poison for stupefying fish, and making them easy to catch. Correspondingly we find it produces great disturbance of the sensorium in human beings, and all the symptoms of intoxication. It is commonly used as an adulteration of beer to heighten its intoxicating properties. A very characteristic symptom is a sensation of hollowness or emptiness in the head or other parts. Allied to this is a sense of lightness of body. Another characteristic is an opening and shutting sensation, especially in the occiput. Along with the vertigo is nausea and vomiting which bring it into close relation with sea-sickness and carriage-sickness. Coccul. corresponds perfectly to the sensitive condition caused by loss of sleep and night-watching, and is the first remedy to think of for removing this. "Irritable weakness" is a leading note in the Cocculus effects. The Cocculus patient is very sensitive to fear, anger, grief, and all mental disturbances.

also to noise and touch. Enlargement of liver after anger. Easily startled. Fear of ghosts and spectres. Stinging pains, stitches, constriction.

in the hands a pithy feeling. Many symptoms are agg. at menstrual period.

piles during menses. Cocculus has cured a case of delirium at onset of menses during first and second days.

the patient said, "I always see something alive, on wall, floor, chairs, or anywhere, always rolling, and will roll on me." Cocculus is suited to persons of mild and sluggish temperament.

light-haired persons. hypochondriacal, timid, fearful, and nervous persons. Other prominent features of Coccul. are Paralytic pains, or pains as of dislocation. Paralytic weakness.

lax-muscles. "Weakness of neck muscles with heaviness of head." Sensation as if single parts had gone to sleep. Immovability of parts affected. Of localities, the right hypochondrium (especially liver), inner hypogastrium, inner forehead, back, upper arm, and bones of arm are chiefly affected. This has been verified "Spasmodic, flatulent colic, about midnight, flatus passed without relief," recurring several nights.

promptly cured by Coccul. 3x. Lippe cured a case of enlargement of the liver after parturition, the indication being "the liver was more painful after anger." The sensitiveness to touch is very great and serves to indicate Cocculus in preference to other remedies in many affections where this is pronounced, in articular rheumatism, in ulcers, in neuralgic affections of bones. The least jar is unbearable (travelling by land or sea). agg. By touch, pressure, or jar. agg. From motion generally.

moving body. rising from bed.

bending over or stooping. agg. Kneeling.

walking. swallowing saliva. Sitting amel. some symptoms. Many symptoms are agg. evening and night, especially about midnight and 1 a.m. Sensitive to air either hot or cold. Longs for cold drinks, but eating or drinking anything cold = tearing in limbs. agg. Open air. agg. From sun. agg. By warmth of bed. amel. In a room. A decoction of Cocculus is a domestic remedy used locally for destroying head- or body-lice.

Cocculus Indicus. Hahnemann. Menispermaceae.

* * *

We will study the general system and The mind as usual. Cocculus slows down all the activities of the body and mind, producing a sort of paralytic weakness. Behind time in all its actions.

Slowly All the nervous impressions are slow in reaching the centres. If you pinch this patient on the great toe he wants a minute and then says "oh," instead of doing it at once. In response to questions he answers slowly, after apparent meditation, but it is an effort to meditate.

And so with all nervous manifestations, thought, muscular activity, etc. He cannot endure any muscular exertion, because he is weak.

he is tired. First comes this slowness, then a sort of visible paralytic condition, and then complete paralysis. This may be local or general. There are certain causes which produce these effects. A wife nursing her husband, a daughter nursing her father, becomes worn out by the anxiety, worry and loss of sleep.

She is exhausted. unable to sustain any mental or physical effort.

weak in the knees, weak in the back, and when the times comes for her to sleep she cannot sleep. Sickness brought about in this manner is analogous to that caused by the Cocculus poison, and hence Cocculus from the time of Hahnemann to the present time has been a remedy for complaints from nursing, not exactly complaints that come on in the professional nurse, for Cocculus needs the combination of vexation, anxiety and prolonged loss of sleep, such as you have in the mother or daughter who is nursing, or the nurse when she takes on the anxiety felt by a member of the family.

At the end of it she is prostrated in body and mind, she cannot sleep, she has congestive headaches, nausea, vomiting and vertigo. That shows how a Cocculus case begins. One who is thus exhausted in body and mind goes out for a ride. She gets sick headache, pain in the back, dizziness, nausea and vomiting. She gets into the car to take a journey. Sick headache comes on. She goes on a mile or two and will have nausea, vomiting and sick headache. She feels weak all over, feels as if she would sink away.

The Cocculus patient gets into a wagon to ride, sick headache, nausea, vertigo come on. The Cocculus patient cannot endure motion. Aggravated by talking, by motion, by the motion of the eyes, by riding. Wants plenty of time to turn the head cautiously to see things. Wants plenty of time to move, to think, to do everything. The whole economy is slowed down, inactive.

Tremulous, tired, excitable. The hands tremble when taking hold of anything, or he takes hold of awkwardly and drops it. Incoordination runs through Cocculus Indicus, and hence it has been used with good effect in locomotor ataxia. It has staggering and numbness. Numbness is quite a feature of Cocculus Indicus. Numbness of the lower extremities, in the fingers, in the shoulder, of the side of the face. Complaints from anxiety.

Cocculus Indicus sensation of seasickness and dizziness is sometimes felt all over the body; a sort of faint feeling which is followed sometimes by loss of consciousness, or a paralytic rigidity.

Joints Stiffness of the joints is a common feature in Cocculus It belongs to the limbs in general. But it is such a strong symptom I will mention it here. Limbs straightened out and held there for a while are painful when flexed. Persons who have been suffering from anxiety, prostrated, will lie on the back, straighten out the limbs, and get up only with great difficulty.

The doctor comes and he discovers what is the matter. He bends the limbs and she screams, but she is relieved after the bending, and then she can get up and move about.

You cannot find that anywhere else. It is entirely without inflammation. It is a sort of a paralytic stiffness, a paralysis of the tired body and mind. The Cocculus headaches and backaches, pains and distress are present.

A man will stretch out his leg on a chair and be cannot flex it until he reaches down with his hands to assist. Such things are strange. Faintness on moving the body, fainting from pain in the bowels, from colic. With all this slowing down of the thoughts and activities the patient remains extremely sensitive to suffering, sensitive to pain.

Spasms through the body Iike electric shocks, convulsions after loss of sleep. This patient goes on with nervousness and excitement, anxiety and loss of sleep until convulsions supervene. Tetanus. Cholera, attacks of paralytic weakness with pain, paralysis of the face, of the eyes, paralysis of the muscles everywhere, paralysis of the limbs. Even diphtheria has been known to induce a state very much like I have described as due to loss of sleep and anxiety.

I remember a case of paralysis of the lower extremities that was prescribed for by a very careful homeopathic physician many years ago. It was one of the things that surprised me in the early days of my prescribing and observation.

It was the case of a little girl with paralysis of lower extremities after diphtheria and no hope was given. But Doctor Moore (he was then an Octogenarian) looked over the case. I was acquainted with the family and with the doctor.

He studied the case carefully and gave Cocculus c.m. It was not many days before the child began to move the legs, and the condition was perfectly cleared up, and I have never ceased to wonder at it. It was a good prescription perfectly in accord with all the elements of the case.

Doctor Moore was one of the pupils of Lippe and Hering.

He cannot realize that it has been a whole night. A week has gone by, and it seems but a moment, he is so dazed. Slowness of comprehension.

cannot find the right word to express his thoughts, so slowly does his mind work.

what has passed he cannot remember.

forgets what he has just read.

cannot talk. cannot bear the least noise.

cannot bear the least contraction.

The tongue will not respond. There is confusion of mind and difficulty of articulation. An idea comes into his mind and becomes fixed. He cannot convert it or move it, but it just stays there, and if he speaks he will say something that will cause you to realize that that same idea is holding on to him. So he appears to be in a state of imbecility.

There is an appearance of ecstacy, a smile upon the face. Knows what is going on, yet with complete relaxation of the muscles without speech or apparent recognition of anyone. Perfectly relaxed, and yet knowing what is going on. That resembles catatonia. Unable to think.

The vertigo is visually attended with nausea. A Cocculus case cannot look out of the car window, cannot look down from the boat and see water moving, without nausea immediately.

Perhaps you can even now surmise what the head symptoms are to be. With the headaches comes dizziness, extreme nausea and gastric symptoms.

Congestion of the head, pressing, throbbing headache. Headache as if the skull would burst, or like a great valve opening and shutting. Sick headache with vertigo. Headache again from working in the sun. Sick headache from riding in a carriage.

Tearing pains in the face. Neuralgia of the face.

Prostration and nervous exhaustion accompany most of the complaints of Cocculus

You go to the bedside and you ask the nurse,

"What have you been feeding the patient?" and the patient gags. The thought of food makes the patient gag.

The nurse will say that every time she mentions food the patient gags. The thought of food or the smell of food in the other room, or in the kitchen, will nauseate the patient. Two medicines have this Cocculus and Colchicum Autumnale Colchicum.

Paralysis Paralytic conditions. Paralysis of the oesophagus. Cannot swallow.

"Paralytic condition of the throat after diphtheria."

Sore throat with low forms of fever. The fever is gone but the patient does not rally, there is much nervous trembling, numbness, twitching of muscles and great weakness. Sensation as though a worm were crawling in the stomach.

Spasms of the stomach. Violent attacks of gastralgia, violent cramp of the stomach. Griping, pinching, constrictive pain. The pain in the bowels feels as if the intestines were pinched between sharp. stones.

Tearing, cutting, spasmodic pains in the bowels. Radiating pains in the bowels accompanying diarrhea. A paralytic condition of the rectum. Inability to press at stool. Urging to stool and burning in rectum. Disposition to stool, but peristaltic motion in upper intestines is wanting.

Women Copious menstrual flow, menses too soon; last too long. Catamenia two weeks before the time. In women prostrated from grief and from anxiety, and from prolonged loss of sleep, menses come too soon, are copious and prolonged.

The woman is emaciated, and grows more and more sickly and chlorotic. The face is of greenish, yellow, sallow hue.

"Leucorrhea in place of the menses," or

"copious leucorrhea between the menstrual periods."

The heart is weak, pulse feeble. Paralytic weakness in the limbs, numbness, jerking of the muscles, twitching, quivering, loss of sensation, loss of power, muscular weakness in all the limbs. Numbness and paralytic feeling in the limbs.

Awkwardness of the fingers and hands. On attempting to grasp the one band with the other there is migratory numbness, or a more permanent numbness associated with paralytic weakness, sometimes changeable; sometimes one side is numb and the other paralyzed.

The soles of the feet go to sleep. Numbness of the soles of the feet, such as we have in locomotor ataxia.

cold feet. The knees give way from weakness. Totters while walking and threatens to fall to one side. Knees stiff. Paralysis of the lower extremities, proceeding from the small of the back. Arising from cold, from the abuse of Merc Viv Mercury.

Paralysis of the lower limbs, with stiffness, numbness and bruised feeling.

"Slightest loss of sleep tells on him."

ache, vertigo, nausea. Violent, cramping pains in the bowels, clutching pains in the uterus during menstruation. Again, just such a patient as described will have a suppression of the menstrual flow, or for weeks and months will have no menstrual flow.

or just at the time the menstrual period should come on there is a copious leucorrhea that takes the place of the menses.

Weakness of cervical muscles, can hardly hold the head up.

Weakness in small of back as if paralyzed; gives out when walking; can hardly stand, walk or talk.

Hands and feet get numb; asleep.

Headache with nausea and vomiting; gets faint and sick on rising up or riding in carriage or boat.

General sensation of weakness; or weak, hollow, gone feeling in head, stomach, abdomen, etc.; worse by loss of sleep or night watching.

Great distention with flatulent colic, wind or menstrual colic; crampy pains, inclined to hernia.

Modalities worse sitting up, moving, riding in carriage or boat, smoking, talking, eating, drinking, night watching; better when lying quiet.

Farrington says "Cocculus acts on the cerebro-spinal system, producing great debility of these organs. * * * It causes a paralytic weakness of the spine, and especially of its motor nerves; thus we find it a certain and frequent remedy in paralysis originating in disease of the spinal cord. * * * It is especially indicated in the beginning of the trouble, when the lumbar region of the spine is affected.

"Weakness of the cervical muscles with heaviness of the head, muscles seem unable to support the head." (Calc Carb Calc. Phosphorus phos, Veratrum Album Verat. alb.). "Paralytic pain in the small of the back, with spasmodic drawing across the hips, which prevents walking." "His knees sink down from weakness, he totters while walking and threatens to fall to one side."

"At one time his feet are asleep, at another the hands." "The hand trembles while eating, and the more the higher it is raised." "Now one hand, now the other, seems insensible and asleep." The soles of the feet go to sleep, while sitting." "General attacks of paralytic weakness, with pain in the back."

All these are verified symptoms from Allen's Encyclopaedia of Pure Materia Medica. They are in the simplest terms, and while they do agree with the statements of the above quoted learned men, acting upon the spine and motor muscles, could be applied to the cure of the sick according to the directions of Hahnemann by any layman of ordinary intelligence. Thus is the practice of curative medicine simplified, being delivered from speculative theorizings of dreamers, and if it will cure the sick in the case of a Cocculus patient, it will by the same unerring law of "symptom covering" do it in every curable case.

We might sum up the whole action of Cocculus Indicus upon the nervous system in one word, viz., prostration, but what does that amount to for purposes of prescribing. Many remedies prostrate fearfully, but each one has its peculiar kind of prostration, and when men, like I heard a celebrated surgeon in a homoeopathic college do, make their boast that they prescribed on physiological ground, without any regard to symptomatology, I can but feel that such know little or nothing of the art of homoeopathic prescribing, no matter what their other attainments. According to Hahnemann's teachings symptomatology leads in scientific prescribing, no matter what the pathological condition.

Aside from the symptoms which attend the general prostration and spinal trouble, or coupled with them, we have the following which are characteristic. "Confusion or stupefaction of the head, increased by eating and drinking." "Vertigo, as if intoxicated and confusion of the mind." "Whirling vertigo on rising up in bed; which compelled him to lie down again." "Sick headache with nausea and inclination to vomit." "All these symptoms are made particularly worse by riding in carriage or boat." Sea-sickness. (Sea-sickness better on deck in fresh cold air.) (Tabacum Tabac.). The headaches and vertigo of Cocculus are different from Bryonia Bryonia, notwithstanding the fact that both are made worse by rising up in bed. In Bryonia Bryonia and some other remedies the sickness at the stomach precedes the headache which in Cocculus is exactly the reverse. Painful sensation of weakness or emptiness in the head is found under Cocculus and is in keeping with the general weakness. This sensation of emptiness, which is another name for weakness, is a general characteristic of Cocculus, and is found in head, abdomen, bowels, chest, heart, stomach.

The sensorium comes under the same profound depression that invades the general nervous system. The patient is sad, absorbed within himself, brooding, moody, silent, sits in a corner buried in sad thoughts, etc. This is particularly the case in nervous fevers. Depression, depression, depression. Cocculus has some very important symptoms in the abdominal and uterine regions.

One is great distention of the abdomen. This is found in both flatulent colic and dysmenorrhoea. In flatulent colic, for which it is so valuable a remedy, the patient complains of a sensation as if the abdomen were full of sharp sticks or stones. The attacks are often at mid-night. The flatus seems here and there, and passage of it does not seem to relieve much, for new forms again take its place.

Then again there seems to be great pressure in the inguinal region as if hernia would occur. In dysmenorrhoea, in addition to the distention, there are griping, cramping pains, which are very severe, and also a remarkable degree of weakness. She is so weak that she can hardly stand, walk or talk. This is very characteristic and, so far as weakness goes, resembles Carbo animalis, but in Cocculus it is in line with the general prostration of the remedy, while in Carbo Animalis Carbo animalis the flow weakens her. In Cocculus the flow may not be at all excessive, but on the contrary may grow less and less and a leucorrhoea appear in its stead, or even between the menses also. This is the way we have to differentiate between remedies if we are successful in practice.

Now, if I were to give the four great characteristic symptoms of Cocculus Indicus they would be these

1. Weakness of cervical muscles, with heaviness of head.

2. Affections caused or worse by riding in cars, carriage or boat.

3. Sensation of weakness, or hollowness in various organs.

4. Ill effects from loss of sleep, night-watching or over-work. (Causticum Causticum Cuprum Metallicum Cuprum met., Ignatia Ignatia, Nitric Acid Nitric acid.).



Cerebro-spinal axis OCCIPUT

Lumbar Muscles

Female sexual organs

One side