The preparation of Ferrum Phos., which plays such an important part in the therapy of Schüssler, has so far overshadowed the ordinary “Phosphate of Iron” in homœopathic practice, that I have retained the simple designation, “Ferrum Phosphoricum,” for this preparation as less likely to create confusion.
The ordinary phosphate, which has been proved separately, I shall describe next as Ferrum Phosphoricum Hydricum. Our chief knowledge of Fer. Phos. is from Schüssler’s work and the clinical experience of those who have used it on his indications. But it has also been proved under Dr. John L. Moffat (C. D. P.).
In Schüssler’s therapy Fer. Phos. takes the place filled by Acon., Bell., Gels., Verat. viride, Arnica, and other remedies which correspond to disturbed states of circulation, irritation, and relaxation of tissue. “Painless irritability of fibre” is Cooper’s keynote as exemplified in diurnal enuresis. It also retains the leading features of the other Iron preparations: anæmia, hæmorrhages, and disorders of the veins. Inflammation, induration and enlargement of blood-vessels; great physical and mental lassitude; indisposed to physical exertion; nervousness, prostration, rheumatic paralysis. Acute inflammatory rheumatisms. The right shoulder is affected as in Fer. mur. The right-sideness of Fe. p. is as marked as that of the other Ferrum preparations.
Nimier and Parenteau have cured several cases of right-supraorbital neuralgia with morning aggravation with Fe. p. 6x. The morning aggravation appears to be the distinctive indication. Nash says the hæmorrhages are bright red, but occur, not in the plethoric subjects of Acon., but rather in pale, anæmic subjects liable to sudden local congestions. Cooper cured with Fe. p. a case of phthisis in a patient “of the transparent-skin type, the hæmoglobin shining through.”
Schüssler’s own account of Fer. phos., taken from the final edition of his work, translated by L. H. Tafel, is as follows: “Iron and its salts possess the property of attracting Oxygen. The iron contained in the blood corpuscles takes up the inhaled oxygen, thereby supplying with it all the tissues of the organism. The sulphur contained in the blood corpuscles and in other cells, in the form of sulphate of potassa, assists in transferring oxygen to all the cells containing iron and the sulphate of potassa.  When the molecules of iron contained in the muscle-cells have suffered a disturbance in their motion through some foreign irritation, then the cells affected grow flaccid. If this affection takes place in the annular fibres of the blood-vessels, these are dilated; and as a consequence the blood contained in them is augmented. Such a state is called hyperæmia from irritation; such a hyperæmia forms the first stage of inflammation. But when the cells affected have been brought back to the normal state by the therapeutic effect of iron (Phosphate of Iron) then the cells are enabled to cast off the causative agents of this hyperæmia, which are then received by the lymphatics in order that they may be eliminated from the organism.  When the muscular cells of the intestinal villi have lost molecules of iron, then these villi become unable to perform their functions: diarrhœa ensues.  When the muscular cells of the intestinal walls have lost molecules of iron, then the peristaltic motion of the intestinal canal is retarded, resulting in an inertia with respect to the evacuation of the fæces.”
From the above Schüssler deduces the following indications for Iron: “When the muscular cells which have grown flaccid through loss of iron receive a compensation for their loss, the normal tensional relation is restored; the annular fibres of the blood-vessels are shortened to their proper measure, the capacity of these vessels again becomes normal, and the hyperæmia disappears, and in consequence the inflammatory fever ceases. Iron will cure:
1. The first stage of all inflammations.
2. Pains caused by hyperæmia.
3. Hæmorrhages caused by hyperæmia.
4. Fresh wounds, contusions, sprains, &c., as it removes the hyperæmia.
The pains which correspond to iron are increased by motion, but relieved by cold. In the muscle-cells iron is found in the form of a phosphate; we should therefore in therapeutics use Ferrum phosphoricum.” Schüssler generally used the 12x trituration. As an instance of hyperæmia of a low order may be mentioned a case of Raynaud’s disease of the fingers and toes, in which amputation seemed inevitable. Halbert effected a complete cure with Fe. p. 6x trit. Fe. p. is suited to the leuco-phlegmatic temperament; to young persons with varicose veins. Pains go from below upward. Great emaciation. Takes cold easily. Results of checked perspiration on a warm summer day (peritonitis): Open air toothache. Aversion to meat and milk. While eating at table, chill. , motion pain in upper arms and shoulders.