Book Review: Art of Repertorisation

Written by on August 27, 2022 in Book Review, Homeopathy with 0 Comments

Title: Art of Repertorisation: Rediscovering Old & Forgotten Repertories

Author: Dr.Gaurang Gaikwad

Publisher: Dr.Gaurang Gaikwad

Year: 2021

This is Dr.Gaurang Gaikwad’s latest book, published last year. As the title suggests, this is about the “Art” of repertorisation. Although there are several books on repertories and repertorisation, the author’s unique contribution lies in discussing multiple repertories, some well-known and some not that well-known, in one place. This has the advantage that we get to understand the comparative features of different repertories more easily.

The first chapter is about “Value of Repertory”. Here, the author explains why a repertory is important for selecting the correct homeopathic remedy and also cautions us that repertories have limitations because many rubrics are used in an “interpretive way” and hence materia medica must be consulted to confirm the remedy.

The second chapter is on “Kent Repertory”. It is not surprising that the author has devoted the maximum number of pages (about 110 pages) for this repertory, because it is also quite popular among practitioners. The next is about “Phatak Repertory” and this has the second most number of pages devoted to it!

The other repertories discussed in the book are:

– Boger Boenninghausen’s Characteristics Repertory
– Boericke Repertory
– Knerr Repertory
– Robert Repertory
– Clarke Repertory
– Boger Repertory

A notable omission is Boenninghausen’s Therapeutic Pocket Book (BTPB). Interestingly, BTPB seems to be gaining attention these days because of Dr. Heiner Frei’s Polarity Analysis technique.

What makes the book enjoyable is that Dr.Gaurang gives lots of example cases while explaining the use of each repertory, not just from his own practice, but also from other experienced homeopaths. These examples convey the necessary context to use the repertory correctly. Another very valuable piece of information that Dr.Gaurang has included is when to use which repertory. This is also nicely summarised in the chapter “Map of Repertories” that appears at the end.

Chapter 10 is somewhat special because it goes into details of “Artistic repertorisation”. In this chapter, the author convinces us that in difficult cases we may have to consult multiple repertories and combine techniques to arrive at the correct remedy. This is shown through several illustrative cases.

Chapter 11 is a collection of 53 cases that are given as exercises to solve using the repertory. This is followed by Chapter 12, which gives the solutions for these cases.

While going through the book, I found that there are two minor issues that need to be addressed in the next reprint of the book. One is that in many places two words appear together without intervening space. The other is that images need to be formatted better. In several examples, the font size of the text that appears in the image is much bigger than the surrounding text and this is somewhat distracting. Fortunately, both are easy to fix.

Role of Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning in Case Analysis

Books like this are of tremendous value to homeopaths – both beginners and experienced doctors. As all homeopaths know, taking the case, especially in a chronic case and finding the correct remedy is not an easy task. It is both Science and Art. While there are several good repertorisation software, I haven’t come across any software that can directly read the case record (expressed in natural language) and suggest a list of highly probable remedies that fit the case. The homeopath can then identify the correct remedy from this list, based on his/her experience and knowledge of Materia Medica. Such an intelligent software would use advanced Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning techniques to understand the case. This will save considerable time for the doctor, who can therefore help more patients daily. I hope the leading software vendors are working on this idea actively! For the record, I implemented a prototype system using the above idea a few years ago and the results were quite encouraging. I could not continue because building an ML model requires huge amount of case data, which I do not have access to. This requires help from a large number of homeopaths.

Writing a book of this nature and size (around 560 pages) requires tremendous commitment and dedication. Dr.Gaurang has to be applauded for this! I sincerely hope he continues to publish books like this for the benefit of homeopathic fraternity.

For those interested, I have included the titles of a few books from my personal library, to be used as supplementary reading material.

Have a nice weekend!

Additional Reading

1) “Polarity Analysis in Homeopathy”, Heiner Frei, Narayana Publishers, 2013.
2) “Evolution of Homoeopathic Repertories and Repertorization”, Dr.Jugal Kishore, Kishore Cards Publication, 1998.
3) “Essentials of Repertorization”, Dr.Sashi Kant Tiwari, B.Jain Publishers (P) Ltd., 1991.
4) “How to use the Repertory with a practical analysis of Forty Homeopathic Remedies”, Glen Irwing Bidwell, B.Jain Publishers (P) Ltd., 2009.
5) “Repertorization: How to utilise symptoms of the case for finding out the similimum with the help of repertory”, Dr.J.N.Kanjilal, B.Jain Publishers Pvt. Ltd., 2009.
6) “An Overview of Repertories for PG & UG Students”, Dr.D.P.Rastogi, B.Jain Publishers (P) Ltd., 2008.
7) “How to find the simillimum with Boger-Boenninghausen’s Repertory”, Dr.Bhanu D.Desai, B.Jain Publishers Pvt. Ltd., 1995.
8) “Repertorial Analysis and Evaluation: Types, Construction, Philosophies, Merits and Demerits”, Dr.Subrata Kumar Banerjea, B.Jain Publishers (P) Ltd., 1992.
9) “The Art of Case Taking and Practical Repertorization in Homoeopathy”, Dr.Ramanlal P. Patel, Sai Homoeopathic Book Corporation, 1998.

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