Baltimore Homeopathic Study Group

In homeopathy prescription is done on the totality of the characteristic symptoms, as Hahnemann said in the Organon. Prescription on a single symptom while ignoring other characteristic symptoms is not good homeopathy. So what is the role of keynotes? The job of the homeopath is to find the remedy which is most similar to the symptoms of the patient. But because of the finite capacity of the mind, the homeopath can only consider a certain number of symptoms and remedies when selecting the most similar remedy. The role of keynotes is to guide the homeopath in selecting symptoms and remedies. If a symptom is clearly and strongly expressed by the patient and that symptom is a keynote of a remedy, that remedy becomes a candidate to be considered when choosing the most similar remedy. The role of the keynote is to help the homeopath to keep from being lost in a mass of details. However, the selection is only one step in choosing the remedy. The materia medica is always the final authority in choosing the remedy. So how does a symptom become a keynote of a remedy? Keynotes are based on the clinical experience of homeopaths. When a homeopath finds that a symptom is a reliable guide to a remedy it becomes a keynote of that remedy. Because this process is somewhat subjective, different homeopaths will disagree on whether a symptom is a keynote. Keynotes are a useful tool in selecting the most similar remedy. However, knowledge of the repertory and materia medica are equally important.

The keynotes here have been selected from Nash's Regional Leaders. I have selected keynotes that I hope acute prescribers will find useful.