Open access peer-reviewed chapter

New Perspective and Applications of Homeopathy in Treating COVID-19 Symptoms

Written By

Ameya Sharma, Sandeep Puri, Varun Puri, Divya Dheer, Neha Bhandari and Vivek Puri

Submitted: 05 August 2022 Reviewed: 29 August 2022 Published: 07 December 2022

DOI: 10.5772/intechopen.107448

From the Edited Volume

COVID-19 Drug Development - Recent Advances, New Perspectives and Applications

Edited by Arli Aditya Parikesit

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Abstract

The long-term effects of infections such as COVID-19 survivor therapy and post-coronavirus infection are still being researched. The severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS-CoV-2)-caused new coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak is seeing a significant increase in affected individuals worldwide. In severe and critical COVID-19 patients, SARS-CoV-2 has been demonstrated to disrupt normal immunological responses, resulting in a weakened immune system and uncontrolled inflammatory reactions. Lymphocytic activation and dysfunction, granulocyte and monocyte abnormalities, elevated cytokine levels, and a rise in immunoglobulin G (IgG) and total antibodies are all seen in these patients. Scientists from all over the world are working constantly to identify particular treatments and vaccinations for Covid-19. Several cases of treatment have been recorded by homeopathic practitioners around the world, with encouraging results. Bryonia alba, Phosphorus, Arsenic album, Gelsemium sempervirens, and Camphora are some of the Homeopathic medicines that have shown to be effective. Government of India (Ministry of AYUSH) has promoted and approved Arsenic album 30 as an immune booster for its potential involvement in preventing COVID-19, and findings are gradually favoring for this drug. In the management of post-COVID-19 outcomes, homeopathy drugs can be used to treat non-COVID conditions. We explored new perspectives and applications of homeopathic medications that can help with COVID and post-COVID symptoms in this chapter.

Keywords

  • homeopathy
  • COVID-19
  • AYUSH
  • case study
  • applications

1. Introduction

After first appearing in Wuhan, China, in late December 2019, the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS CoV-2) quickly spread throughout the world [1, 2]. The severity of COVID-19 symptoms can range from a self-limiting respiratory disease to severe progressive pneumonia, multiorgan failure, and death [3, 4, 5, 6, 7]. Despite extensive research and numerous ongoing clinical trials [8], there are currently no effective therapeutic medicines for treating or curing a coronavirus infection. Pathological characteristics of SARS-CoV-2 of the family Coronaviridae, which have an RNA genome with a 5′ methylation cap and a 3′ polyadenylated tail, allowing the RNA to connect to ribosomes for translation [9, 10]. The replicase protein encoded by coronavirus genomes facilitates RNA viral genome transcription into new RNA copies by leveraging the host cell’s machinery. The protease-like non-structural protein found in coronaviruses can rupture the protein chain [11, 12]. A surge in type 2 cytokines and a decline in T-cell and B-cell activity that intensifies with age [13] may indicate a poor prognosis for patients with COVID-19.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the combination drug Paxlovid (nirmatrelvir and ritonavir) is the best therapeutic choice for high-risk patients with mild to moderate COVID-19 who are at highest risk of hospital admission. Patients with mild COVID-19 who are at the most risk of developing severe disease and hospitalization, such as the unvaccinated, the elderly, and the immunosuppressed, are highly encouraged to use Pfizer’s oral antiviral medication (a combination of nirmatrelvir and ritonavir tablets). New evidence from two randomized controlled trials involving 3078 participants supports this recommendation. According to the numbers, this treatment decreases the likelihood of hospitalization by 85%. This translates to 84% fewer hospitalizations per 1000 patients in the high-risk group (those with a probability of hospitalization of 10% or above) [14].

The use of homeopathy is widespread in every WHO Region. Use of homeopathic medications, largely as over-the-counter medicines, is increasing in many regions of the world, despite differences in the national regulatory structure and the status of homeopathy within the health care system. While there is some uncertainty about the extent of the homeopathic medicines industry, sales figures indicate that homeopathic medications constitute a large part of medical markets.

Homeopathic remedies, or the stocks or mother tinctures from which they are made, are derived from either naturally occurring or manufactured ingredients that are listed in pharmacopoeial monographs or other legally recognized sources. The following are examples of possible ingredients in homeopathic remedies (excluding imponderables): Animal materials include whole animals, animal organs, tissues, secretions, cell lines, poisons, nosodes, blood products; Plant materials including roots, stems, leaves, flowers, bark, pollen, lichen, moss, ferns, and algae; Microorganisms including fungi, bacteria, viruses, and plant parasites; Tissues, secretions, cell lines, and endogenous chemicals like hormones are all examples of human materials; elements of nature and synthetic chemicals.

It is important that the source materials and excipients used to make homeopathic medicines are of good quality. Some homeopathic remedies contain ingredients whose usage is prohibited in conventional medicine due to safety concerns. To put it simply, nosodes are diluted versions of pathogenic organs or tissues; infectious agents like bacteria, fungus, eggs, parasites, virus particles, and yeast; illness products like excretions or secretions; or anything else that can cause an infection. There is always a chance that anything made with human or animal parts is contaminated with disease-causing organisms. Some homeopathic remedies have poisonous animal or plant ingredients, while others, especially when taken in their fresh form, can quickly degrade or get contaminated by microorganisms.

Heavy metals and insecticides may be present in plant materials. Plants can have widely varying levels of hazardous compounds. Guidelines for Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) regarding the manufacturing process, facilities, staff, packaging, and labeling are applicable to both conventional and homeopathic drugs. Misidentification, impurity of starting material, cross-contamination, and inadvertent contamination are just a few of the quality and safety issues that can arise from a lack of GMP. There are a number of specific consequences that require specially qualified and experienced workers due to the unique characteristics of homeopathic medicine production. These are the facilities that deal with homeopathic medications originating from animal or human origins, as well as poisonous materials and materials (especially fresh ones) that are susceptible to degradation processes and microbial contamination. Accidental or intentional contamination of source materials, excipients, or diluents, or the vessel or bottle used to make the dilution, might affect the characteristics of homeopathic medications. The final homeopathic medicines might vary significantly due to differences in definitions among pharmacopeias as well as in the processing procedures and manufacturing methods used to manufacture them [15].

As with conventional pharmaceuticals, homeopathic remedies must comply with the provisions of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act pertaining to approval, adulteration, and misbranding. As of right now, the FDA has not authorized the sale of any homeopathic remedies.

The FDA’s enforcement policy on homeopathic medicines was laid down in Compliance Policy Guide (CPG) 400.400, “Conditions Under Which Homeopathic Drugs May Be Marketed,” published in 1988. Due to inconsistency with our risk-based strategy to regulatory and enforcement action, FDA removed CPG 400.400 on October 24, 2019. Drug Products Labeled as Homeopathic: Revised Draft Guidance was also released by FDA for public feedback. The FDA has not given its stamp of approval to any homeopathic drug on the market, so it’s possible that these items do not measure up to today’s rigorous quality, safety, and efficacy criteria. To address the issue of unapproved homeopathic remedies in the market, this updated proposed advice suggests a risk-based enforcement strategy [16].

A survey of 293 general practitioners in the Netherlands found that 45% of them think that homeopathic remedies are effective for treating upper respiratory tract infections or hay fever. However, many medical practitioners reject homeopathy as a viable therapeutic option due to the highly improbable notion that drugs diluted to such an extreme degree still retain their biological effects. Furthermore, it is frequently asserted that modern procedures, such as controlled studies, have not been used to assess the efficacy of homeopathy. Synthesis based on predetermined criteria showed methodological quality analysis of 107 randomized controlled trials published in 96 papers. The quality of the trials was evaluated using a predetermined set of criteria, and the results were interpreted in context of the trials’ quality. There were 14 trials examining the efficacy of classical homeopathy, and another 58 trials in which patients with similar conventional diagnoses were all given the same homeopathic treatment. In 26 trials, various homeopathic treatment combinations were examined, while in 9 trials, isopathic treatment was examined. There were many high-quality trials among what appeared to be mostly poor ones. There was a generally good pattern of findings, and this held true regardless of the quality of the trials or the type of homeopathy that was employed. A total of 81 studies showing favorable results and 24 trials showing no positive effects of homeopathy were found out of 105 trials having interpretable results [17].

For almost two centuries, people with all sorts of ailments have turned to homeopathy for relief. Homeopathy has a long history of successfully treating epidemic diseases through prevention and treatment, and its efficacy has been demonstrated in clinical trials, meta-analyses, and systematic reviews [18, 19, 20]. While some people may see homeopathy favorably, it remains a highly contentious kind of complementary and alternative medicine. Two different theories form its basis. First, the idea that a drug that creates the same symptoms in healthy people can also cure the disease it is meant to treat. Furthermore, “the law of minimum dose” states that the smaller the dosage, the greater the therapeutic impact [21, 22]. When it comes to homeopathy, it’s not like one drug cures one illness. Instead, it is a method in which treatments are tailored to specific patients based on overarching patterns and unique qualities revealed by an exhaustive analysis of all of the patient’s reported physical, mental, and emotional distress. Public health measures like as social isolation, hand washing, face covering, and quarantine are now the only preventative treatments available in conventional medicine [23]. The use of homeopathic methods for disease prevention is widespread across the globe. When it comes to homeopathic medicine, Arsenicum album is highly recommended by the Indian Ministry of AYUSH (Ayurveda, Yoga and Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha, and Homeopathy) [24]. With regards to treatment, the homeopathic community suggested gathering cases to evaluate and validate appropriate homeopathic treatment for the COVID-19 pandemic before more extensive, systematic investigations were done [25, 26]. Homeopathy [27] is being studied as a potential treatment for SARS-CoV-2 [28] in clinical trials. Several encouraging studies have shown that homeopathic medicines for COVID-19 symptoms have a high success rate. In this chapter, we will primarily focus on the evidence from clinical studies, novel perspectives, and applications of homeopathic treatments for COVID-19 symptoms [29].

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2. Clinical presentation and diagnostic procedure

As of now, we know that most people infected with COVID-19 will experience only mild to moderate symptoms after an incubation period of 1–14 days, and that most of these people will recover without any additional therapy at all. However, numerous asymptomatic infected people have been identified, and each of them could develop symptoms and spread the disease [30, 31]. Infection with the COVID-19 virus typically causes fever, dry cough, and throat pain/itching. Body aches, headaches, and shortness of breath are among possible symptoms, along with diarrhea, nausea, and a runny nose. Laboratory testing for COVID-19 is necessary for making a definitive diagnosis. This can be done by verifying the presence of the virus or by examining the specific antibodies developed in response to infection. Initial screening for the coronavirus is recommended by the majority of countries by using reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). A positive result from this test indicates that an infection is either extremely recent or is still ongoing. Nasopharyngeal swabs and sputum samples are examples of respiratory samples that can be tested. In addition, the identification of particular antibodies (serology) is helpful for diagnosis and population surveillance, especially in the later stages of the infection [30, 32].

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3. Homeopathic approach towards COVID-19 symptoms

Currently, hospital-based risk management and symptomatic treatment are the only options for COVID-19. Due to its symptom-focused approach, the homeopathic medical system can be an effective tool in the fight against this worldwide epidemic. In the event of an epidemic or pandemic, the first line of defense is to take precautions by teaching the public how to protect themselves from infection and by providing interventions that will maintain their natural immunity. According to the Advisory from the Ministry of AYUSH, homeopaths are encouraged to inform the public about Genus epidemicus that has been identified by designated specialists as beneficial for improving immunity. Numerous homeopathic medications, including Arsenic Album, Pulsatilla, Silicia, Natrum Muriaticum, Phosphorus, Calcarea Carbonicum, Hepar Sulfur, Lachesis, Nux Vomica, Sulfur, and many others, are available for patients with COVID-19 infection [33, 34].

The second approach is to provide affected people with homeopathic symptomatic mitigation [35]. It has been shown that homeopathic medicines can be effective in treating infectious disorders such as the Influenza-like illness, dengue, and acute encephalitis syndrome. The ability of homeopathic medications to modulate the immune system has also been demonstrated in several published preclinical investigations. Depending on the severity of the individual situation, these medications may be provided together or separately [36, 37].

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4. Efficiency of homeopathy in epidemic

Even before the widespread use of modern sanitation, vaccination, and antibiotics, the homeopathic medical system has developed protocols for the management of infectious outbreaks. Hahnemann utilized Belladonna to stop an epidemic of scarlet fever in Europe in the year 1799 AD, and he reported his findings in a treatise [3338]. Aconite, another homeopathic medication, was shown to be effective against the Scarlet fever epidemic that ravaged Germany between the years 1800 AD and 1808 AD. Bryonia alba, Hyoscyamus niger, or Rhus Toxicodendron (singly or regularly) were all effective treatments for the typhoid outbreak that hit Europe in 1813 AD [39]. In 1831 AD., he wrote about the use of camphor, cuprum metallicum, and veratrum album as Genus Epidemicus for preventing and treating pandemics from Asia in the Germanic territory. Camphor was one of his recommended preventative medicines for the infection, while Cuprum metallicum or Veratrum album were recommended for later stages of infection [40]. Success in treating epidemics with homeopathic medications including typhoid, cholera, yellow fever, scarlet fever, smallpox, diphtheria, Spanish flu, meningitis, and polio made homeopathy popular in the United States and Europe in the nineteenth century [38, 41]. Full case analysis is performed before a patient is prescribed medicine in homeopathy. Patients impacted by an epidemic typically have similar symptoms. If the same drug is prescribed to multiple patients after the analysis, the drug may be labeled as the “Genus Epidemicus” drug for that geographical area. Within a few days of a pandemic outbreak, this should be decided. Hahnemann discovered interesting differences between epidemic strains of illness. Hahnemann highlighted in his article “Observations on the Scarlet Fever” [42] that there is no assurance that medications taken in earlier epidemics will be effective in the next outbreak. In the sixth edition of his book, “the Organon of Medicine,” Dr. Hahnemann made specific reference to the choice of “homoeopathic (specific) medicine” in Aphorisms 102 (footnotes), 147, and 241. Using this strategy, Cuba eradicated Kerato conjunctivitis in 1995, and India eradicated Chikungunya in Kerala in 2007 [38]. Other Cuban researchers showed that homeoprophylaxis was helpful in preventing leptospirosis when it was provoked by extensive hurricane damage in 2007 and 2008 [43]. There are several typical cold-like symptoms described by those infected with COVID-19. As a result, homeopathic doctors have decided to treat patients with COVID-19 with the same medication and dosage that is recommended for patients suffering from the common cold. Some few over-the-counter medications that have been effective in treating individuals with the common cold and COVID-19 are discussed below.

4.1 Aspidosperma

Alleviate asthma symptoms for many individuals; by doing so, it raises blood oxygen levels and stimulates the respiratory centers; the symptom of “wanting to breathe” during exercising is the primary indicator; the condition is called cardiac asthma; pulmonary stenosis, infarction of the pulmonary artery due to thrombosis [29].

4.2 Arsenic album

An extremely effective treatment for all of the body’s organs and tissues; deadliness and septic diseases; distress and unrest on a grand scale; extremely thirsty; consumes large volumes of liquid in frequent, little doses; acid reflux is characterized by the reflexive ingestion of acidic or bitter substances that appear to irritate the lining of the throat; swollen and painful liver and spleen; shooting discomfort in the right upper lobe of the lung; cannot sleep because you are afraid of suffocating; limitations on breathing space midnight is when asthma attacks peak; aching in the middle of my chest; intense heat; adynamia is a sign of periodicity; infected fevers intermittent; incomplete paroxysms accompanied by extreme fatigue [25, 44, 45].

4.3 Pulsatilla

Even though it’s cold outside, the patient prefers to be in the fresh air; dry mouthed, grumpy, and shivering; exudates that are viscous, tasteless, and pale greenish; chronically shifting symptoms; prone to frequent tears; enjoys being shown compassion; having coryza means that your right nostril is blocked and you are experiencing pain at the base of your nose; smell impairment; lack of saliva and thirst; desire for regular mouth washings; a habitual licker of dry lips; dislikes warm or fatty foods and beverages; morning loose cough followed by dry nighttime cough that requires sitting up in bed to alleviate; venous distention and unbearable heat make going outside a miserable experience; a headache, diarrhea, loss of appetite, and nausea are all symptoms that occur during apyrexia [25, 46].

4.4 Silicea

Suppurative processes; adverse reactions to vaccinations. mindful and physical submission; a high susceptibility to getting sick from the cold; children that are stubborn and willful; dizziness from staring upwards; best to bundle up itchy, watery eyes in the morning; having trouble smelling and eventually losing that ability; hair-on-the-tongue feeling; stabbing like a pin in the tonsil; feeling of a cold settling into the throat; eruption of the parotid glands; a sharp discomfort when swallowing; coughing fits when lying down; expectoration is thick and yellow and lumpy; feelings of chill in the limbs even when indoors; nighttime sweating that gets worse in the morning; areas of the body that are suffering are ice cold [47].

4.5 Natrum muriaticum

Sensation of tightness all over the body; dryness of the mucous membranes; negative reactions to negative emotions such as grief, fear, wrath, etc.; extreme fatigue and weakness excruciating pain; tears roll down your face when you cough, and waking up in the morning feels like a thousand tiny hammers are hammering on your forehead. Watery, thin discharge, like the white of a raw egg; never fails to prevent the onset of a cold; the inability to smell or taste; mapping the tongue; relax from 9 am until 11 am; temperature; fever causes an increase in thirst; fever-blisters; feelings of chilliness all over the body that do not seem to go away [48, 49].

4.6 Phosphorus

In addition to irritating and inflaming mucous membranes and serous membranes, phosphorus can also induce their degeneration. Rapid onset of symptoms, including fainting, sweating, and falling to the ground suicide anxiety when alone; skin that looks painfully pale, with blue circles beneath the eyes; the hippocratic oath; need ice cold water badly; esophageal narrowing; produces copious amounts of vomit after eating; getting sick; throwing up water once it warms up in the stomach. Tickling in the throat causes coughing; exposure to cold air, reading, laughing, or talking makes it worse. Feeling of heaviness or pressure in the chest. Painful, stabbing sensation in the chest; rapid, stifled breathing it feel like there is a fire going in the chest; suffocating pneumonitis; laying on one’s left side is far worse; body-wide trembling and coughing; in the evenings, the Sputa is rusty and cold. Aching knees after a long day; unmoving due to lack of thirst but with an abnormal appetite [50, 51].

4.7 Calcarea carbonicum

It treats the twitching cough, the brief chest pains, the nausea, the stomach acid, and the aversion to fat; lacks stamina and fatigues quickly; relapses are common, and recovery time is disrupted; extreme sensitivity to the cold; occasional sweating children have a penchant for eggs, but they also consume dirt and other indigestible substances. Patients with calcarea are typically large, pale, flabby, and sweaty, as well as chilly, moist, and sour. Hoarseness that is not painful, but is worse in the morning, and a tickling cough that’s most bothersome at night. Only daytime expectoration is permitted; viscous mucus that is yellow in color and has a sour taste; extreme sensitivity to percussion and touch in the chest; seeking to get some air; at 2:00 p.m., a chill spreads across the stomach region; flu-like symptoms, including sweating; strong and regular heartbeats [52, 53].

4.8 Hepar sulfur

Those with a scrofulous or lymphatic constitution, who are more prone to breakouts and swelling of the glands, will benefit the most from this; experiencing a gust of wind in an area; even a minor provocation can set him off; corner-of-the-mouth ulcers; you feel like there’s a splinter or a blockage in your throat whenever you try to swallow; quinsy, with suppuration in the horizon; suffering from swallowing-inducing stitches that go all the way to the ear; trapping mucus; coughing fits brought on by exposure to cold, especially while eating anything cold; loose, rattling cough from croup; symptoms are greater in the morning; coughing so hard that you cannot breathe; cold when exposed to air or even a gentle breeze; excessive nighttime dry heat; heavy perspiration; a putrid, disagreeable stench [50, 54].

4.9 Lachesis

Feeling of strain in various areas; cannot take a tight grip on anything; prodigious fluency in speech; patches of aphthous dermatitis and bareness, with pain and redness; bad flavor; worse on the left side, and it hurts to drink liquids; experiencing quinsy; discomfort made worse by hot beverages; extremely distressing; the smallest pressure, the slightest contact, is excruciating. It’s important that the collar and neckband be quite slack; frequent dry, suffocating, and irritating coughing; having low secretion and a high degree of sensitivity; laryngeal irritation made worse by open air and the lack of a pillow; shivering shoulders, freezing toes, a blazing flush, and a burning sweat; acids cause a recurrence of paroxysm; recurring springtime fever with intermittent symptoms [53, 55].

4.10 Nux vomica

Nux patients tend to be slender, frail, fast, lively, tense, and irritable; irritated by any external stimulus; avoids physical contact; having a headache outside in the bright sun; symptoms of a cold or the flu made worse by being indoors in a warm environment. Exudation that is acrid but accompanied by a sense of congestion; a sensation of being scratched and rubbed raw; having a good morning tickle; a feeling of tightness, stress, or roughness; bloated feeling in the upper abdomen (epigastrium) and the pressure of a stone some hours after eating; full stomach and asthma, especially in the morning or after eating; coughing, with the feeling that something has been pulled loose in the chest; poor lung capacity; limited capacity for respiration; a high degree of strictness, as evidenced by blue fingernails; abdominal pain and generalized aches and pains; fever stages are cold; always wear layers. Feelings of chilliness when exposed, despite his refusal to wear clothing; internal dry heat [25, 56].

4.11 Sulfur

Extreme heat, aversion to water, dry skin and hair, reddened genitalia, nausea and vomiting around 11 a.m., and catnaps; for sulfur patients, standing is the worst possible position; sulfur subjects almost invariably exhibit irritability, depression, emaciation, and weakness while having a healthy appetite. Itchy, red, and scaly skin that bleeds easily; chronic dry catarrh adenoids and polyps; feelings of tightness and heat in the chest; respiratory distress; prefers an open window middle-of-the-night dyspnea that is alleviated by sitting up; morning heart rate is higher than nighttime heart rate; greenish, purulent, pleasant expectoration; coughing worse when conversing or in the morning; bursts of intense heat; rapid and severe rises in core body temperature; excruciating parchingness and thirst; night perspiration (especially around the nape and occiput); localized perspiration (especially on the hands and feet); smelly perspiration; spontaneous, intermittent, and relapsing [50, 52].

4.12 Bryonia

Dryness of the mucous membranes; when the bryonia patient raises their head, they have dizziness and a pressive headache, and they are agitated. Chapped, cracked lips and tongue; an abnormally high need to urinate, a distaste for most foods, a hypersensitive epigastric region, and an uncomfortable sensation of having a stone lodged in one’s stool that is dry and firm; a dry cough; Bryonia has a propensity for leanness and irritability, and it has the most noticeable effects on people whose constitutions already include sturdy, firm fiber and dark skin. It acts most visibly on the right side, in the evening, and in the open air, especially after a cold spell; hacking cough that makes you feel like your chest is going to explode; rapid, laboured breathing made worse by physical exertion; this condition is the result of chest sutures. Shiver with a dry cough and sutures; radiant warmth from within; sour perspiration after even mild exercise; an abundance of sweating that is simple to induce; gastric and liver problems are markers of rheumatic and typhoid fever [52, 57].

4.13 Vanadium metallicum

Utilized in cases of anemia and other forms of wasting illness due to its oxygen-carrying and catalytic properties; in addition to increasing hemoglobin levels, this process combines oxygen from the blood with the toxines, neutralizing them; anxiety that spreads throughout the chest; dry, irritating, and paroxysmal cough, which may be accompanied by bleeding; nasal, ocular, and pharyngeal irritation [58].

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5. Case study

Randomized clinical studies, which are designed to examine how one medication cures one condition with one primary outcome, are unsuitable for investigating homeopathic remedies because of their subjectivity and individuality [59]. All COVID-19 patients with RT-PCR confirmation, received home isolation and care at COVID Care Centers. Patients with minimal to moderate illness were all taken into account. In the mildest cases, patients had simple upper respiratory tract infections and showed no signs of respiratory discomfort or oxygen deprivation (normal oxygen saturation). Patients with a respiratory rate more than or equal to 24 breaths per minute and an oxygen saturation (SpO2) of less than 94% (range: 90–94%) on room air were identified as having moderate pneumonia [28, 60]. Patients with multiple medical conditions were also included.

Patients were checked on once a day for up to a week or until their symptoms subsided completely. Patients who were quarantined at home were called daily to monitor on their condition. As with any frequent follow-up of a homeopathic case, the patient was questioned about the severity of their symptoms and their general health at each visit. At each follow-up, patients were rated on a scale from −4 to +4 called the Outcome in Relation to Impact on Daily Living (ORIDL) [61].

Establishing causality between medication and improved health is a major obstacle in prognostic factor research, as the cure could be the result of the homeopathic medicine, or it could be the result of other factors, including a spontaneous and natural recovery, or the placebo effect. The following criteria were used to choose cases of the highest quality:

  • All cases where improvement in both the primary clinical symptom and overall health was recorded within 7 days of commencing homeopathic treatment (ORIDL +3 or + 4) were included, as this is taken to be an indication of the efficacy of the homeopathic remedy.

  • Improvements were already noticeable just a few hours after starting homeopathic medication. The treatment period was considered to be twenty-four hours.

  • Persistent improvement following multiple administrations of the treatment of choice.

Once all of the relevant information had been entered into the spreadsheet, each of the aforementioned cases was analyzed in greater depth utilizing specific areas of the Modified Naranjo Criteria for determining causal attribution of clinical outcomes [62]. Only the following four of ten possible domains were taken into account.

  1. Domain 1: Did the primary ailment for which the homeopathic remedy was prescribed improve?

  2. Domain 2: How quickly did the patient’s condition improve after starting treatment?

  3. Domain 5: Did people feel better overall?

  4. Domain 10: To what extent does repeated dosage improve clinical outcomes?

In 258 cases, only one homeopathic remedy was provided, whereas in the remaining 69 cases, two or more homeopathic remedies were prescribed in sequence. When RT-PCR testing was performed 2–3 weeks after homeopathic treatment, all 35 instances tested negative. Due to the revised guidelines, testing was not possible in other cases where the patient was discharged after 10 days of symptom onset and no fever for 3 days (in mild cases) or after 10 days of symptom onset and no fever without antipyretics, resolution of breathlessness, and no oxygen requirement (in moderate cases) [63].

Totaling 211 patients, all of whom showed significant symptom improvement on the COVID-19 scale, were included in the analysis. Insufficient follow-up (22 instances), absence of symptoms (7 cases), and inability to prove causality (42 cases) were among the reasons a total of 116 cases had to be left out of the analysis.

Fatigue, sore throat, dry cough, myalgia, fever, dry mouth and throat, increased thirst, headache, diminished appetite, anxiety, and altered taste were the most often reported side effects. With reference to the above said number of cases, few of them were discussed. The pre COVID and post COVID RT-PCR reports were taken from the patient as shown in Figures 13. The post COVID reports of three patients (Patient I, II & III) clearly indicates the therapeutic effect of homeopathic remedies which was prescribed by the physician.

Figure 1.

COVID-19 pre-medication and post medication reports of patient I.

Figure 2.

COVID-19 pre-medication and post medication reports of patient II.

Figure 3.

COVID-19 pre-medication and post medication reports of patient III.

These three patients wanted homeopathic treatment in addition to conventional medicine for Integrative Complementary Medicine, and one of them was hospitalized due to moderate to severe COVID-19-related symptoms. Patients I, II, and III were all adults with proven COVID-19 infection upon admission. According to Table 1 and Figures 46, they have received their homeopathic drugs from a licensed pharmacy or registered practitioner in the form of a potency and mother tincture (liquid).

DayCurrent conditionHomeopathic remedies
Patient I
1Heaviness in the right leg; stitching pain on the left of the chest; restlessness; anxiety; weakness and feeling thirstyArsenicum Album for every 2 hours
2No fever; no pain around heartArsenicum Album for every 2 hours
3No fever, required less supplementary oxygen: walk easlyArsenicum Album for every 2 hours
4Headache, stable respiratory conditionArsenicum Album for every 2 hours
5Frontal sinus headache; viscid coryza and tightly adhering scabs in noseArsenicum Album for every 2 hours; Kali Bichromicum for every 4 hours
6Less headache; feeling better
7–14Hospitalized; Under observation without homeopathic treatments
14Patient discharged
Patient II
1Pneumonia; severe thirst for large quantities of cold water; nausea; weakness during fever; drowsiness – constant desire to close eyes; chest pain; alternating chills and sweats; perspiration down back and numbness in legsPhosphorus for every 2 hours
2Gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms improved; dyspnea; drink greater quantities without feeling nauseous; respiratory symptoms improved; reduced chest pain; hollowness in the chest; weakness during feverArsenicum Album for every 2 hours;
Phosphoric Acid for every 2 hours
3Anxiety and restlessness; cold drinks aggravate; warm amelioratePhosphoric Acid for every 2 hours; Stannum for every 2 hours (alternative)
4Homeopathic treatment protocol continued unchanged
5Respiratory symptoms concomitant with abdominal complaints;Phosphoric Acid for every 2 hours; Bryonia Alba (Single dose)
6Patient discharged
Patient III
1Polydipsia; diarrhea; oxygen saturation falling to 87%Phosphorus for every 2 hours
2Diarrhea stopped; fever normalized; no respiratory improvementPhosphorus for every 2 hours
3Dyspnea and cough; aggravated by speaking; deep inhalation or prone position; dizzy headache between eyebrows; inability to keep eyes open; chill without shivering’ white and paralyzed tongueLobelia Purpurascens for every 2 hours
4Two-hourly Lobelia purpurascens was continued
5Two-hourly Lobelia purpurascens was continued
6Sensation of inhaling smoke and dryness, bifurcation of bronchial tubes which causes coughingOzone for every 2 hours
7–9Ozone 3 times a day
10Patient discharged

Table 1.

Day wise treatment of patients showed improvement in their health after administration of homeopathic remedies.

Figure 4.

Prescription of patient-I received from a registered practitioner or physician.

Figure 5.

Prescription of patient-II received from a registered practitioner or physician.

Figure 6.

Prescription of patient-III received from a registered practitioner or physician.

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6. Conclusions

The symptoms of COVID-19 patients were said to have improved due to homeopathic treatments. Findings from case studies can help with homeopathic prescribing in future controlled research on COVID-19. Most of the symptoms of this pandemic can be helped by homeopathic treatment, which adds to the medications domain of action. In addition, it has been demonstrated that homeopathic medicines can alleviate symptoms across the spectrum of the diseases manifestations. Supportive evidence suggests that homeopathic treatments could be used alongside conventional preventative and curative methods during the current COVID-19 outbreak.

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Acknowledgments

The authors would like to express their gratitude to Dr. Madhu Chitkara, Vice-Chancellor of Chitkara University, Punjab, India; Dr. Ashok Chitkara, Chancellor of Chitkara University, Punjab, India; and Dr. Nitin Verma, Principal of the School of Pharmacy at Chitkara University, Himachal Pradesh, India.

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Conflict of interest

The authors declare no conflict of interest.

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Written By

Ameya Sharma, Sandeep Puri, Varun Puri, Divya Dheer, Neha Bhandari and Vivek Puri

Submitted: 05 August 2022 Reviewed: 29 August 2022 Published: 07 December 2022