Sepia vs Sulphur
Both pale or yellow face
Sulphur.: red spots on the cheeks/ facial eruption more on the upper lip/acts on the sole of the foot.
Sep.: facial eruption around the lower lip and on the nose/acts on the tendo achilles;
Dr. Gros in his “Comparative Materia Medica’ has given many comparisons and contrasts between allied remedies, which have often been of the greatest use to me in selecting a remedy for the sick.
There are, however, many more points of distinction between the remedies I have chosen for this study, which I have put in easily available form for my own use, and which I now endeavor to arrange
for still more extended and convenient reference. I need hardly say to anyone to whom this study may come that Boenninghausen has been my chief guide.
Beginning with the symptoms according to the Hahnemannian schema, we find affections of the intellect in the highest degree characteristic of Sepia; even indifference, absence of mind, difficult
comprehension. Sulphur has less tendency to intellectual disturbance, except as to fantastic illusions. Sulphur has a more decided action on the hair, but the complaints calling for Sepia are mostly found
in dark haired people.
Sepia has a comparatively slight affinity for the eyes, although the eye symptoms are numerous. Sepia predominantly acts on the upper eyelid; Sepia acts more than on the internal ear causing acuteness
of hearing (Sulph. less); Sepia has inflammatory irritation of the tip of the nose; Sepia the smell is lessened or lost;
Sulphur affects almost all tissues of the eye powerfully, with many disturbances of vision. Sulphur on the margins of the lids. Sulphur complaints have rather hardness of hearing and noises (humming).
Sulphur, bleeding of the nose on blowing it. Sulphur there is smell of old catarrh in the nose.
Both remedies have pale or yellow face, but red spots on the cheeks decide for Sulphur. The facial eruption of Sepia is around the mouth and on the nose; that of Sulphur more on the upper lip.
Sepia has a puffy nose, but Sulphur has freckles on the face. Sepia affects mainly the lower; Sulphur the upper lip.
Sepia has pain and decay of the teeth; Sulphur, disturbances of the tongue and lessened saliva. Sepia has loss of appetite; Sulphur, thirst and aversion to meat.
Under Sepia the taste is mostly bitter or salty; under Sulphur it is sour.
The chief gastric disturbance of Sepia is vomiting of bile; but Sulphur has water in the mouth, qualmishness, nausea and sour vomiting. Sepia affects mainly the liver; Sulphur, the stomach.
Sulphur has rumbling in the abdomen, while the complaints of Sepia prevail in the hypogastrium. Sulphur has offensive flatus, obstructed stool or diarrhoea, and stools bloody, green, knotty, mucous,
offensive, scanty, with ascarides, lambrici, taenia. In comparison with these Sepia has only the bloody stool in equal degree. Sulphur also has aggravation during stool and ineffectual urging to stool, and
affections of the perineum. Sepia gives dark urine, with reddish or bloody sediment; Sulphur, increased desire to urinate, flow of urine by drops, involuntary urine at night.
While they act equally on the female genitals, Sulphur has the same tendency to affect the male genitals (penis); but Sepia is suited to discharge of prostatic fluid, and also acts mainly on the vagina and
womb, causing labor-like pains; it is equally indicated in abortion. Both have late menses, but Sulphur also, delay of the first menses, and the periods short, scanty or suppressed. Sepia has a yellow
leucorrhoea, which also attends many other complaints.
Sepia has a slimy nasal catarrh, and complaints attended with disordered respiration, but both have oppressed or quick respiration. Both have cough; Sepia with expectoration, which is mostly at night or
in the morning, and is purulent or saltish, while the expectoration of Sulphur is bloody.
Sulphur acts upon the external chest and nipples; Sepia equally on the scapulae.
Sepia acts predominantly on the back of the hand; Sulphur on the fingers, but Sepia again on the finger joints. Sepia causes symptoms of the legs; Sulphur, of the back and inner side of the thighs.
Sepia acts on the tendo achillis; Sulphur, on the sole of the foot. Sulphur acts on the toes in general; Sepia, on the tips of the toes and in the production of corns.
Sepia symptoms are characteristically better or worse; Sulphur worse on awaking. Sepia is worse before sleep. The Sulphur patient < motion of the body; Sepia symptoms < from exertions of the mind.
This is a distinction which has been to me of great practical value.
Sulphur symptoms < before or from suppression of the menses; Sepia <, occur after coition, menstruation or sexual excesses.
< eating (pork), belongs to the symptoms of Sepia; < after taking milk is characteristic of both remedies.
Under Sulphur we find aggravation during or from suppression of sweat; under Sepia during fever and during and after sweat.
Under Sepia < riding either in carriage or on horseback; Sulphur < running. Sepia < sitting; Sulphur < rising, and standing. Sulphur < during sleep; Sepia, < during the first sleep.
Sepia < getting wet; Sulphur < in the warmth of the bed. It would be easy to draw many more comparisons from our rich records of these drugs, but I fear to weary you with more of what appeals so
largely to the memory and so little to the other faculties. From neglecting to consult or consider these differences, many a mistake has no doubt been made, and the patient has missed his best help and
the physician his truest pleasure.