jeggels.com

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Welcome to the website of Dr. Herman Jeggels, MD (VU Ams), MRCP (UK), FBIH (Hon), DHM (Hon), medical homoeopathic practitioner.

The website provides access to some background information concerning my practice, to questionnaires, some general information, and a map. To simplify access to new issues for visitors to my site, I use this paragraph for updates. Thus, on the 1st July 2013, I added an important page on the future of homeopathic practice in South Africa. Further, on the 25th September 2013 I added a page on my response to an editorial published in the March 2012 issue of the South African Medical Journal by Prof van Niekerk in which he termed Dr. Samuel Hahnemann's therapeutic system a mystica, or a religious belief! Prof van Niekerk responded to my paper, however, he refused to publish my response to his, which can now be accessed here.  He used his editorial powers to reject my rebuttal, but his response can never go unchallenged, even belatedly. To end this update, please find a link to my CPD activities planned for 2016.

Nevertheless, I must use this home page to clarify some misconceptions and perhaps some misunderstandings which patients have concerning homoeopathy, which I rather term homoeopathic therapeutics (HTS). Experience has taught me that patients do not know where to place HTS, with respect to what I term, "official medicine" (OM, or henceforth just in short, medicine, unless I deem it necessary to use OM). Last-mentioned is more commonly known wrongfully as "modern medicine" (each generation deems itself "modern" compared to its predecessors). OM is the form of medicine exclusively taught at "official medical schools or health faculties". Many patients may not be aware that a great tussle took place during the late 1800s between the different views on the treatment of patients - that tussle, perhaps not so bad tempered, is still with us today. By 1900, perhaps only in the United States of America (USA) were there true homeopathic medical schools, while elsewhere, OM trained doctors were the only source of doctors using HTS. However, by the 1920s all the homeopathic medical schools in the USA were forced to change their teaching to that of OM. The study of HTS were forced from medical schools and teaching hospitals to colleges without the resources of OM and struggled to survive. Perhaps today only in India do we have true homeopathic medical schools (this is a drop in the ocean on "medical history"). OM is therefore viewed by many patients in many parts of the world, as in South Africa, as the "official" or the "right" medicine, while all other systems of treating the ill or infirm are viewed and termed for example, "alternative", "complementary", or otherwise in a crude and tactless manner, as "quackery". 

I must briefly discuss the either-or attitude in medicine, which is very wrong and regrettable. It can never be either medicine, or e.g., HTS. This is regrettably the position of quite a number of my medical colleagues, and even laypersons. I am of the opinion that this position is not wise. I, for instance, can never think away surgery or local anaesthetics, such as lignocaine. I do not want to be "tortured" in a dental chair. 

To elaborate on the wrongfulness of the either-or problem, please be advised that HTS is a medical therapeutic system (a treatment option) with an enormous knowledge, and experience base, while its practitioners must still study the rest of what makes up the profession of medicine. HTS uniquely fulfils the 'aim of medicine', the essence of the profession, which is to achieve 'a right and good healing action in the interest of a particular patient', but if it can't achieve that, or that healing is achieved by chance and not based on knowledge, the profession is "inauthentic and a lie." (Reference: Pellegrino E. Toward a reconstruction of medical morality: the primacy of the act of profession and the fact of illness. Med. Philos. 4(1) (March 1979). Thus, the profession of medicine is about the one patient coming to consult you as health practitioner.

The following may serve as an example: consider two patients, where each is suffering from a slipped disc problem in their back, with pain radiating down their legs. The first patient has pain down the right leg with severe cramps, where the pain and cramps are relieved to a great extent with the application of a warm beanbag, but the pain returns when the area cools down. The second patient has pain down the left leg which responds much less favourably to the warm beanbag, but instead responds remarkably well to very hard pressure on the area of painful cramps down the leg, as long as the pressure is maintained. The two patient have their own unique set of problems, which requires two different treatments, one for the right, and another for the left leg. In this manner, all possible conditions of patients are treated according to their unique symptoms and signs which require their specific medicines.

HTS is a system of medical therapeutics unlike OM's drug system. It has been developed according to its own theory and methodology, while OM's drugs such as lignocaine have been developed very differently. OM can't achieve what HTS can, while HTS on the other hand, can't do what lignocaine does, and lignocaine will always be with us, happily. Similarly, HTS can never replace surgery. In consequence, the either-or-mentality is wrong.

The above has explained to an extent the "place" of HTS? I will now elaborate somewhat more on its "position" in a round about manner, starting with the fact that I studied medicine at the Free University of Amsterdam (Vrije Universiteit [VU Amsterdam]) in the Netherlands during the early 1980s. Most medical courses tend to span 6 years; in the United Kingdom 5 years, while in the United States of America 4 years, as medical students there are obliged to have another degree or qualification before entering medical school.

Doctors have, according to their training, for example, the option to treat a patient with a medicine for the disease of a patient, however, when a medicine can't heal the patient, they may have to consider to perform an operation. This aspect of medical practice is termed the treatment or therapeutic option.

Nevertheless, before a therapeutic option can be considered, the following general components of medical practice must be fulfilled:

Having discussed the above, I do hope that by means of it, I have successfully clarified that HTS, as the practitioner's therapeutic option, is but a small part of a large volume of knowledge and skills which that practitioner requires.

 

© Dr. HJD Jeggels 2006. Updated March 2013; April and June 2016.