The nerve cells of the body that control the voluntary movements of the extremities and the trunk are known as motor neurons. Motor neuron disease (MND) is a progressive disease that attacks the brain and spinal cord’s motor neurons. This results in messages that gradually stop reaching the muscles, which leads to weakness and wasting.

Motor neuron disease (MND) is characterized by selective degeneration of upper and lower motor neurons. It can affect walking, talking, eating, drinking, and breathing. However, symptoms of motor neuron disease (MND) do not follow any pattern and not everyone struggling with the condition shows symptoms.

Role of homeopathy in motor neuron disease (MND)

Homeopathic remedies help in providing symptomatic relief to the patient in case of motor neuron disease (MND). Symptoms like muscle cramps, aches, clumsiness, weakness, and fatigue can be easily managed with homeopathy. Early diagnosis and management of the disease with homeopathy help in improving the prognosis of MND.

Six effective homeopathic medicines for motor neuron disease (MND)

Gelsemium sempervirens

Common name: Yellow jasmine

Gelsemium is indicated for paralysis of muscles of hearing causing hearing problems. Paretic condition of the tongue that causes difficulty in speaking is present. The speech also becomes thick. Paralysis caused by emotions after a diphtheria attack are indicative of this remedy. There is paralysis of the larynx causing aphonia (inability to speak) and one-sided paralysis of the body.

Nux vomica

Common name: Poison nut

Nux vomica gives relief in incomplete paralysis of the face, arms, and legs with vertigo in cases of motor neuron disease (MND). The person has a weak memory. There may be darkness before the eyes and ringing in the ears. There is a loss of appetite with burning in the stomach along with flatulence and vomiting after eating and drinking.

Plumbum metallicum

Common name: Lead

Plumbum is indicated for paralysis with atrophy. Muscular atrophy from sclerosis of the spinal system is present in motor neuron disease (MND) along with paralysis of spinal origin. It helps manage muscle weakness, loss of muscle function, or atrophy of muscles (which means loss of muscle mass). It is helpful when there is weakness and numbness in arms and hands.

There is muscle twitching in the limbs along with loss of muscle function in the lower limbs, hand, wrist, and forearm, especially on the right side. Hands and feet may be cold with stuttering speech and voice loss. Paralysis of the upper extremities is more marked. Excessive and rapid emaciation with great weakness and anemia is marked.

Causticum

Common name: Hahnemann’s tinctura acris sine kali

Causticum is prescribed for paralysis of single parts – vocal organs, tongue, eyelids, face, bladder, extremities, and general right-sidedness. There is drooping of eyelids and the person cannot keep them open. Laryngeal muscles stop functioning well and the person may not be able to speak a loud word. There is sudden aphonia after taking a cold. Paralysis of the face or tongue with weakness of sight may be present in motor neuron disease (MND).

Cocculus indicus

Common name: Indian cockle

Cocculus is recommended in paralysis of the facial nerve, especially on one side of the tongue and pharynx. In weak people, rheumatic lameness is present in motor neuron disease (MND). The person may faint anywhere due to fits and palpitation of the heart. There may be paralysis of the lower limbs and the person may suffer one-sided paralysis of the face with cramp-like pain in opening the mouth with chattering of teeth when attempting to speak. There is paralysis of chewing muscles with difficulty swallowing.

Opium

Common name: Poppy

Opium is indicated for paralysis and insensibility after apoplexy in drunkards and older people with motor neuron disease (MND). The person has retention of stool and urine and may have a distorted face. Individuals may feel twitching facial muscles. Paralysis of tongue which is dry and black. The person faces difficulty with articulation and swallowing.

In many cases, the tongue protrudes to the right side, and due to this, the person is unable to swallow anything. When swallowing food, it goes wrong or returns through the nose. Painless paralysis may be present in individuals with twitching limbs and numbness. The person feels like their lower limbs belong to someone else and that one or other arm moves convulsively.

Causative factors for motor neuron disease (MND)

  • Hereditary factors.
  • Age above 40 years.
  • Males are more prone to MND.
  • Glutamate-containing foods that may cause the neurons to die resulting in MND.
  • Chronic aluminum toxicity.
  • Slow virus infection.
  • Electrical shock.

Signs and symptoms of motor neuron disease (MND)

  • Muscle weakness and cramps.
  • Disturbance of speech and swallowing (dysarthria and dysphagia).
  • Wasting of muscles.
  • Weakness of muscles of limbs, tongue, face, and palate.
  • Muscle wasting and weight loss.

Symptoms of motor neuron disease (MND) that may develop later:

  • Progressive bulbar palsy results in dysphagia, and there is a chance of aspiration pneumonia.
  • Dyspnea (difficulty in breathing).
  • Hypoxic encephalopathy.
  • Sleep disturbance.

Diet modifications for motor neuron disease (MND)

  • Consume a nutrient-rich diet full of whole carbs, lean proteins, healthy fats, vitamins, and minerals.
  • Avoid food that needs to be chewed a lot. Consume a soft diet.
  • Increase your fiber intake for a healthy digestive system.
  • Maintain adequate water intake to prevent dehydration.

Conclusion

Motor neuron disease (MND) is incurable and requires palliative care. Homeopathic medicines help in providing symptomatic relief by dealing with the root cause of the complaints. However, it is always advised to consult with a qualified homeopathic doctor before taking any medicine for safe and effective treatment.

References

  • Paolo Bellavite, Paolo Magnani, Elisabetta Zanolin, Anita Conforti, “Homeopathic Doses of Gelsemium sempervirens Improve the Behavior of Mice in Response to Novel Environments”, Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, vol. 2011, Article ID 362517, 10 pages, 2011. https://doi.org/10.1093/ecam/nep139
  • Dutta A, Singh S, Saha S, Rath P, Sehrawat N, Singh NK. Efficacy of individualized homeopathic medicines in treatment of post-stroke hemiparesis: A randomized trial. Explore (NY) [Internet]. 2023;19(2):243–50. Available from: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.explore.2022.08.017
  • Gibson DM. Causticum, a study. Br Homeopath J [Internet]. 1967;56(02):101–4. Available from: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/s0007-0785(67)80059-0
  • Signorini AM, Pichler C. Homeopathic pathogenetic trial of Plumbum metallicum: the complete 2000 trial with a synthesis of the original 1828 trial. Int J High Dilution Res [Internet]. 2021;10(34):15–36. Available from: http://dx.doi.org/10.51910/ijhdr.v10i34.416
  • Oberbaum M, Schreiber R, Rosenthal C, Itzchaki M. Homeopathic treatment in emergency medicine: a case series. Homeopathy [Internet]. 2003;92(1):44–7. Available from: http://dx.doi.org/10.1054/homp.2002.0071
  • Bellavite P, Bonafini C, Marzotto M. Experimental neuropharmacology of Gelsemium sempervirens?: Recent advances and debated issues. J Ayurveda Integr Med [Internet]. 2018;9(1):69–74. Available from: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jaim.2017.01.010
  • Ganesh L, Seppan P, Anandan B. Asserting the anxiolytic effect of homeopathic medicines: Gelsemium sempervirens 30C and Argentum nitricum 30C using Zebrafish – a pilot study. Allg homöopath Ztg [Internet]. 2017;262(02):2–76. Available from: http://dx.doi.org/10.1055/s-0037-1601116
  • Goel A, Saxena A, Bhatia AK. Antiepileptic Effect of Nux vomica, Homeopathic Remedy, Against Strychnine-Induced Seizers. Pharmacogn J [Internet]. 2018;10(2):245–8. Available from: http://dx.doi.org/10.5530/pj.2018.2.43
  • Gibson DM. Nux vomica, a study. Br Homeopath J [Internet]. 1963;52(01):32–7. Available from: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/s0007-0785(63)80008-3
  • Adler UC, Padula AEM, Cesar A de T, Adler MS, GaldurÃÂÂ3z JCF. Homeopathic potencies of Opium in alcohol dependence: exploratory open-label study. Int J High Dilution Res [Internet]. 2021;11(38):19–24. Available from: http://dx.doi.org/10.51910/ijhdr.v11i38.548
  • Bellavite P, Bonafini C, Marzotto M. Experimental neuropharmacology of Gelsemium sempervirens?: Recent advances and debated issues. J Ayurveda Integr Med [Internet]. 2018;9(1):69–74. Available from: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jaim.2017.01.010
  • Ganesh L, Seppan P, Anandan B. Asserting the anxiolytic effect of homeopathic medicines: Gelsemium sempervirens 30C and Argentum nitricum 30C using Zebrafish – a pilot study. Allg homöopath Ztg [Internet]. 2017;262(02):2–76. Available from: http://dx.doi.org/10.1055/s-0037-1601116
  • Goel A, Saxena A, Bhatia AK. Antiepileptic Effect of Nux vomica, Homeopathic Remedy, Against Strychnine-Induced Seizers. Pharmacogn J [Internet]. 2018;10(2):245–8. Available from: http://dx.doi.org/10.5530/pj.2018.2.43
  • Gibson DM. Nux vomica, a study. Br Homeopath J [Internet]. 1963;52(01):32–7. Available from: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/s0007-0785(63)80008-3