A look at the chronic miasm : Sycosis (Medorrhinum)

This week we are pleased to have a guest blogger, Jeff Korentayer from the Arcanum Wholistic Clinic.

I periodically touch down into the materia medica of the chronic miasms (inherited disease tendencies), and today is the perfect time to have a look at the Sycotic miasm, which is best known through the remedy Medorrhinum. The 8 universal chronic miasms map out over the 4 seasons of the year, 1 pair per season. The Spring Equinox marks the time of year when the daylight will start to overtake the night, and the many implications for new life and rebirth abound through nature.

This time of incredible manic expansion of life is the natural home for this miasm. Medorrhinum is full of extremes in all forms of physical, mental, and emotional symptoms. Here in Saint John, we are already seeing the seasonal extremes of this time of year — last week we enjoyed a couple of sunny 27°C days, while a grey, wet, cold weekend has led to a waking temperature this morning of minus 17°C with the windchill! This miasm is a strong root behind medical conditions such as bi-polar disorder, allergic asthma, and 3D skin conditions, such as warts or skin tags. It is also a very strong factor behind family histories which contain any forms of heart disease.

The general theme running through all the symptoms of this miasm is of an expansion caught by a restriction, which either causes pain, swelling, or inflammation, and a tendency towards exploding outward. In terms of the mental-emotional state and behaviour of this miasm, there are many extremes. Extremes of behaviour and mood punctuate a characteristically brilliant but unpredictable personality, as is often portrayed in the lives of certain creative artists. Aggression and even cruelty are not foreign to this state.

As an artistic impression, you could say that Medorrhinum is represented by the city of Las Vegas — the hometown of “sex, drugs, and rock ’n roll” — where every impulse and wish can be granted, no matter how perverse. It’s interesting that the expression “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas” actually represents the emotional aspect of this state of mind. The case study I wrote about last month is an illustration of this state of mind of a guilty feeling which was hidden away inside a little girl.

A drive towards having extremely exciting experiences is characteristic of this miasm. Whether pressing down on the accelerator further than usual on a sunny day with the volume on the radio turned up, engaging in “extreme” and dangerous sports, or pursuing forbidden or perverse sexual experiences, you will recognize this same underlying theme. There is a degree of ‘armoring’ within the medorrhinum state which is attempting to break through at the hand of these types of extremes.

As with all of the chronic miasms, once you understand its most essential characteristics, it becomes relatively easy to identify it as the root of so many varied physical and mental-emotional symptoms. As part of an effective system of medicine, understanding the roots is so much more important than trimming the leaves or branches.

What to do when you get lost!

Our health is often something we take for granted until we lose it. As the Joni Mitchell song goes, “you don’t know what you’ve got ’till its gone.” Health is home. We know the territory and how to get around. Life is enjoyable and invigorating. Losing your health is being yanked out of the comfort of home and dumped in a strange city where they speak a strange language and follow strange customs. Suddenly life is a real challenge, and more a matter of survival. You feel like the ‘burned’ agent in Burn Notice.


You might seek help from the official system, but likely discover that the official system isn’t really much help to you in chronic, complex cases and often just makes things worse. There are lots of well-meaning alternative approaches available, but other than closing your eyes and picking one, or asking around for a good recommendation, it’s all a little confusing and uncertain.

If the journey involves more than a walk across the street, or even across town, you need someone with the right map. For some, the journey is not that complicated or long, and common approaches, such as diet, exercise, supplements, can work but what if your journey is more involved? Here the best guide is the one with the best map. Christopher Columbus had access to some very detailed maps, charting features not normally found on maps in his day. Without that, he would not likely have ventured across the ocean.

article-new-thumbnail_ehow_images_a01_us_df_become-cartographer-800x800Most complex, chronic cases involve crossing desserts, swamps, mountain ranges, even oceans to get back to health. An accurate map, and one that covers all the different terrains is critical.




Most maps only cover the physical terrain, and then often superficially; they don’t reveal real topography (mountains, swamps, canyons, etc.) or the deeper underlying geological structures that can impede progress and even block it.  Also, most approaches based on the more superficial maps deal with surface issues (symptoms). mu6HRC7VlDM-hNA33TYR0RQWithout the right map, they cannot get at the deeper underlying causes. If you are stuck in a swamp, they may help you fight off the alligators (parasites, pathogens, toxins, etc.), but they cannot provide a way out of the swamp. Soon you get so focussed on combatting symptoms that you forget the objective is to drain the swamp.


Heilkunst provides the most comprehensive map of chronic, complex health issues we know of. It can help in acute, emergency situations, of course, but it’s real value comes in helping you or a family member to get back to health, or if health has never really been there, to build a strong health foundation.

Treat a symptom and get relief for a while; remove the cause and get relief for life. Health is a journey and the better, more comprehensive the map you use, the further you can go.