Arnica Montana –

Common names: Leopard’s Bane. Wolf’s Bane. Bruisewort. Fall Herb. A member of the compositae family, it is found distributed in northern temperate and arctic regions. Arnica is a mountain plant favouring high mountain sides with steady sunlight and high pastures in moist, peaty, siliceous soils at approximately a thousand metres. The higher the altitude in which it grows the more aromatic it becomes.

Arnica flowers are a beautiful yellow-orange with the typical compositae arrangement with the exception of the petals which in the case of Arnica are uniquely irregular, giving the appearance, somehow that the crown has been torn, damaged. The flower heads are raised on hairy stems which are eight to twenty inches in height. It has a symbiotic relationship with specific insects, tripeta arnicivora and tetritis arnica, both flies and their larvae live at the base of the crown. In addition, a number of funghii live as parasites on the surface of the plant[1]. It thrives in the zone where decay and break down of soil occurs rapidly due to mountain environment, yet it appears to withstand these arduous conditions.

Growing naturally in the places where climbing accidents and falls can occur, Arnica is of great value to the mountaineer, suffering exhaustion, circulatory injury and shock with bleeding. It is of extraordinary value as a vulnerary, a wound healer but should not be applied externally where the skin is broken.

Trauma and its effects, whether recent or remote, are met by Arnica. It is a trauma remedy par excellence, those resulting from injuries, falls, blows and contusions. Compound fractures. Mental or physical shocks. Arnica after traumatic injuries. Over-use of any organ, strains. Here one may consider the effects of difficult or prolonged labour in uterine conditions; uterine haemorrhage; the physical and mental effects of rape, including ailments resulting from injury to sexual organs; ailments of excessive sexual indulgence – vaginitis in females, impotency in males.

Arnica is suited to an injury, however remote, seems to have caused the present trouble.

Trauma of grief, remorse or sudden realisation of financial loss.

Influenza with sore bruised muscles. Limbs and body ache as if beaten, joints as if sprained. Bed feels too hard or full of lumps. Great prostration, with tired feeling. Sore, lame, bruised feeling. Rheumatism of muscles and tendons, especially of back and shoulders.

Discharges are foul, of breath, taste, flatus, stool etc., low grade putrid and septic conditions – abscesses which do not mature; typhoid, septic fevers. Prophylactic of pus infection.

Suited to plethoric, red faced persons; strokes with a red, full face; disposed to cerebral congestion (cf.Teste).

Modalities: Better for lying with head low, or lying outstretched. Worse from injuries, falls, blows, bruises, shock, jarring, after labour, over-exertion, sprains. Worse least touch. Worse touch. Worse after sleep, rest, motion, wine, damp cold. Coal gas. Worse lying left side.

Mind symptoms: Fear of approach of anyone. Fear of being touched or injured. Feels like a wounded animal. Fear of sickness. Fear of instant death with heart distress. Fear at night. Fear on awakening. Fear of crowds, public places. Unconscious, yet when spoken to answers correctly, but relapses. Coma. Muttering delirium. Delerium tremens.

Mental or emotional shocks. Never been well since a fright or grief. History of severe physical trauma with chronic mental or emotional effects. Overworked and exhausted. Indifference to work.

Morose, delirious. Nervous, cannot bear the pain, whole body over-sensitive. Says there is nothing the matter with him. Nervous shock. Feels well in serious cases, because of shock.

Materia Medica Sources: Boericke. Clarke. Murphy. Vermeulen.


[1] Prisma by Frans Vermeulen, Emryss Press cf. Gutman, Homooeopathy