With thanks to the Dairy Mirror 30.7.10

The Colombo Municipal Council has decided to distribute homeopathic drugs and powder made out of grounded Madurutala (Ocimum basilicum) and Margosa leaves to prevent the spread of dengue.

CMC’s Indigenous Medicine Chief Medical Officer Dr. Palitha Rathana told the Daily Mirror that the council had decided to adopt alternative medicine and indigenous methods to prevent the spread of the disease.

He said a homeopathy clinic was conducted at Slave Island after the Homeopathic Council approached CMC Administrator Omar Kamil and briefed him about the new dengue preventive drug they had come out with. The Council had provided homeopathic treatment to over 3000 people in the city already.

The council also hopes to conduct more such clinics in the future as well.

Explaining the reasons to adopt indigenous methods, he said the decision was made after some interesting findings. He said Madurutala and margosa leaves prevented mosquitoes from getting attracted to the blood.

Coming up with an interesting finding he said spread of dengue among those who visited Hindu Kovils regularly was minimal because Madurutala was used  in their devotional offerings. In addition the CMC had also decided to distribute Madurutala plants to households in the city to prevent the disease.

A Presidential Task Unit, together with all these segments of the military has come together in order to attempt to eradicate the dengue menace.  As of today, there have been 7419 dengue cases in the city this year while 417 cases have been reported within this month.

Four people have died of Dengue in the city this month whereas the total number of deaths for the year has been 16. The disease is reported to be spreading towards southern parts of the city according to him.

Dr. M I Latiff Asian Homeopathic Medical League Vice President and Sri Lanka Homeopathic Medical Association President explains:

Dr Latiff said the best advice he could give a dengue patient is not to do anything that weakens your immunity. Avoid taking cold baths, having cold drinks and avoid taking showers in the evenings as well. Water you drink should be boiled and lukewarm. Even the slightest thing that can reduce your immunity should be avoided if you want to combat dengue. He requests President Mahinda Rajapaksa to make use of Homeopathy as a system of treatment against dengue to address the current situation.

Following are the excerpts of an interview with Dr Latiff on dengue fever.

Q. What is dengue in the context of homeopathy?

A. Let’s forget about dengue. What is disease? Disease itself is an altered state of one’s immune system. Diseases are not produced from outside. We keep on breathing bacteria and viruses every second. The doctors say dengue and chickengunya are viruses. Although we get all these agents through air or water we do not fall sick because we have immunity in our bodies. As long as the state of immunity stays unaltered or healthy we are not sick.

No sooner immunity deteriorates , we fall sick. There is a constant battle going on inside our bodies. When immunity goes down the body is unable to defend. This is what we call disease. First we must determine what the disease is and the cause of it. The bacteria and viruses are able to attack our bodies only when our immunity is weak.

When our energy or the vital force goes down, the body expresses signs and symptoms of disease. The conventional medical practitioners depend totally on physical symptoms.

Whether a disease is epidemic or endemic, the lack of immunity is its cause. Mosquitoes bite without any discrimination but not all of us get infected. If you take an area where 10,000 people live, only 50 to 100 people get affected by the virus. Those whose immunity is weak, display signs and symptoms of sickness.

Q. Are the Health Ministry conducted dengue eradication programs effective in controlling the situation?

A. This indeed is good. Cleaning the areas and destroying mosquito breeding grounds can prevent a future dengue outbreak. But it does not mean it could prevent people from falling sick by mosquito bites. It does not help saving the lives of those who are affected by dengue in the country.

Q. What is your opinion about the Cuban produced BTI bacteria, which the Government plans to import to control the disease?

A. The BTI bacteria kills only the larvae . It cannot kill mosquitoes. The disease is not spread through larvae. It spreads through the mosquitoes that carry the virus from one person to another. No doubt that BTI bacteria is a good long term solution. But in the current context with over 165 deaths due to dengue.

Of them most victims have been children with over 23,000 infected persons throughout the country. The bacteria cannot do anything to save the affected. Our problem is to save the lives of dying patients. The bacteria may prevent future mosquito breeding, but it will not prevent the patients from dying.

Q. Are programs introduced so far to eradicate dengue ineffective?

A. They have overlooked the most important aspect, saving lives, which should be the priority.

Q. Where do you think that things have gone wrong?

A. The allopathic system does not have the capacity to treat a viral infection. What they do is give more fluids to avoid dehydration. Another thing is when you have more fluid , you are flushing out your system. But once you are infected , there is nothing they can do. If you have fever , they can give medicine to bring it down. But I am against bringing down the fever. You may control it to an extent because fever is a natural way of defending the internal organs from being affected. The body produces fever to prevent infection. So if you bring down the temperature you are giving more chance to the infection to manifest.

The increased temperature supports the system to fight. If you bring the temperature down , you are reducing the patient’s capacity to fight the virus. Therefore you have to keep it under control with an ice cap or something.

Q. Do you mean it is wrong to keep your normal body temperature if you are infected with dengue?

A. Yes, it is wrong to bring down the temperature under the conditions as it will reduce power of the body to fight the virus. You must maintain the temperature at a certain level, but should not bring it down.

Q. How can homeopathy help?

A. Homeopathy treatment has no antibiotics. It just induces body’s immunity to fight the infection within the natural system. Homeopathic medicine is not material but based on energy. What homeopathy does is it gives stimulation to your system.

Q. What kind of stimulation?

A. For example take the TB vaccine. It contains little property of TB. You will not get TB from the vaccine because it is very minute quantity that you get from the vaccine. It is like cheating your system with a false alarm to defend your body from a TB infection. The system tries to react by enhancing its resistance to the bacterium. Even if a large quantity of TB should enter into your system, the body is ready to fight it. The stimulation is similar kind. The mumps and polio are also addressed in the same way. When the polio vaccine is given, there is fever, which means that your immunity is being enhanced. The fever indicates that you can defend the disease.

Q. Is that what you do in homeopathy?

A. In homeopathy what we do is something similar to what we normally do against TB. We do not use TB, we use something similar to TB.

We use this in one in a million quantity, or an atomic quantity to give a person to create an artificial condition inside. As you know, artificial is always stronger than the natural. It makes artificially-induced symptoms overpower the natural disease causing agent, but not directly but by enhancing the immunity, making your body fight.

Q. Do not antibiotics produce the same effect as in homeopathy?

A. The difference is antibiotics are given after the disease has set in to kill the bacteria. After its power is gone, the bacteria can manifest again. This cycle goes on. The reason is antibiotics kill the bacteria but it does not improve the immunity. Homeopathy is different.