Common Names: Wild Bryony, White Bryony.
Parts used: The root.
Bryonia is a perennial climber, native of
Europe. Leaves heart shaped. 5-lobed; flowers small,
greenish white or yellowish; fruit, berries size of a
pea, of a black color. Root spindle shaped 1 to 2 feet
The dried root of Bryony is in -odorous, bitter and
contains bryonin, starch, gum fat, malates etc. It
yields its properties to alcohol or hot water. The
herbalists use this drug for pectoral conditions as in
the spasms of whooping cough. It is very powerful and
poisonous in large doses.
In Homeopathy it is a drug of par
excellence and one of the great polychrest remedies,
being widely used in our practice.
Persons of gouty and rheumatic diathesis. Persons of
black hair, dark complexion, firm muscular fibre.
Persons who over eat. Dry, nervous slender people.
Notes and features:
1. Sluggishness. Like Aconite,
it has no violence at the onset of an attack, but
complaints increase into violence. The patient takes
cold, but then, unlike Aconite develops complaints after
a day or two and not in a few hours.
Dryness of mucous membranes, everywhere, but
especially in mouth and stomach. Dry mouth . Lips dry,
parched, cracked. Dry, hard, painful cough,
there being scanty or no expectoration. Dry, hard
stool. Stool dry as if burnt.
*For large quantities at long
Hard nodosities, in several parts of the skin, like
small indurating glands. Dry, hard stools.
In mastitis breast is stony hard.
Swelling of legs. Dropsical swellings. Dropsical
swelling of abdomen. Synnovial swellings. Red shining
swelling of some parts of body, with sweating during
*Stitching pains worse from motion ( as in
pleurisy, meningitis, peritonitis, etc. at the onset
of inflammation.) The patient lies on the affected
part, so as to keep the part at rest.
Repurcussion. In cases of metrorrhagia,
nose-bleed occurs as a vicarious flow. There may be
nosebleed, when menses should appear. Vicarious
menstruation taking the form of nose-bleed, haemoptysis,
etc. Complaints caused by suppression of milk, such as
mild leg, fever, etc. Diarrhoea from suddenly checked
perspiration in hot weather.
As in Pulsatilla, so as in Bryonia, the
leading characteristic lies in its modality. Three words
Another very valuable modality of Bryonia is
again expressed in three words- amelioration from
pressure. This is the reason the patient, much to the
astonishement of the nurse, wants to lie on the
painful side or part (opposite of Belladonna,
and Kali Carb)
is called the
remedy, because the person who needs this remedy is
irritable and wishes to be left all alone. Whatever the
disorder-fever, headache, sore throat or gastritis the
patients feels worse with the slightest movement and is
affects especially the constitution of a robust, firm
fiber and dark complexion with tendency to leanness and
irritability. It prefers the right side, the evening,
and open air. Warm weather after cold days, to manifest
its action most markedly.
Exceedingly irritable and inclined to be
vehement. Despair of being cured with fear of death.
thins immediately which are herd to be had, or which
when offered are refused."
dislike to be carried or to be raised."
Constant disposition to sigh. Over -sensitiveness of the
senses to external impressions. Momentary absence of
mind. Delirium; wants to go home;
talks of business.
The head complaints may be looked upon as
striking features of the remedy, because there is pain
in the head with almost every acute complaint. Headaches
are associated with inflammatory and congestive
complaints. The mental dullness and confusion of the
mind is spoken of with the congestive headache, and
bursting headache. The head feels so full she wants to
press it with the hand or tie it up; tight pressure,
over the whole skull, is grateful. The headaches are
worse in warm room and commonly worse from heat.
Sometimes superficial neuralgias have relief from local
heat, but a warm room or a close room is very
distressing to the Bryonia headache. Headaches
are of bursting, splitting type, as if everything would
be pressed out as if hit by a hammer from within <
motion, stooping, opening eyes, motion, even of
eyeballs. . Headache become seated in the occiput.
Vertigo, nausea, faintness on rising, Frontal headache,
frontal sinuses involved.
Many of the complaints of Bryonia commence
in the nose; sneezing, coryza, running at the nose, red
eyes, lachrymation, aching through the nose, eyes and
head the first day; then the trouble goes down in to the
posterior nares, the throat the larynx, with hoarseness,
and then a bronchitis come on, and if not checked it
goes into pneumonia and pleurisy, so that the trouble
has traveled from the beginning of the respiratory
tract, the nose, to the lung tissue. This is a field for
the complaints of Bryonia. .All are worse from
motion, all parts are subject to a good deal of burning
and congestion; more or less fever, sometimes intense
fever, the patient is himself worse from the slightest
motion and wants to keep still; dullness of mind,
pressive congestive headaches, sore, lame and bruised
over , often worse at 9 o'
clock in the evening ; increased dullness of mind after
sleep on waking in the morning. Frequent sneezing.
Sneezing between coughs.
Bleeding from the nose in these congestions, or with
coryzas. During the menstruation there is epistaxis.
Congestion of the head is present at the menstrual
period. Epistaxis appears as a vicarious flow in case
of menses. If the menstrual flow should be checked
suddenly from cold, nose bleed comes on. Dryness in
Aural vertigo. [Aur; Nat. sal.; Sil; Chin.]
Bryonia is highly spoken of by Dr. Dudley
Wright of London, in Meniere's
disease as suiting those cases where the vertigo comes
on from any sudden motion, as on rising from a seat.
Roaring, buzzing in ears.
Bryonia may be thought of in rheumatism of the eyes,
with violent pains shooting through the eyeball into the
back of the head or up towards the vertex; worse by
moving the eyes.
In rheumatic iritis it is the
first remedy to be thought of, and it is quite as
useful in syphilitc; in fact, in any form of iritis; the
pains are sharp shooting in character, extending into
the head and face, moving or exciting the eye aggravates
the pain. A sensation as if the eyes were forced out of
the socket is also found under Bryonia. It comes in
after Aconite or Ferrum Phosphoricum,
which are the remedies for the first stage, especially
for the sudden variety with burning and dryness.
Terebinth has rheumatic iritis with intense pains in the
eyes and head, and the urinary symptoms are perhaps
present. Arnica is a useful remedy in
rheumatic iritis, but it corresponds especially to the
traumatic form, here Hamamelis shoud be thought
of, especially if there be haemorrhage into the iris or
may be found useful in glaucoma. There is an increased
tension of the eyeballs, lachrymation and photophobia.
The eyeballs are sore, it is not so useful when the
external coats of the eyes are involved.
Great dryness of the lips; the lips are parched and
pick the lips.".
cracked and bleeding"
such will be seen in typhoid states, where the whole
mouth is mouth is dry and brown, cracked, parched and
bleeding; dry, brown tongue. Sordes on the teeth.
Bryonia has toothache <warm drinks; from warm
foods , worse in a warm room, wants cold foods in the
mouth, wants to be in cold air, but < motion.
> by cold water or lying on painful side."
Pressing hard upon the painful tooth ameliorates it.
Thirst for large quantities of water at
Many remedies want to sip water all the
times. In bryonia the large quantities
relieve the thirst immediately. In Arsenic
the drink does not relieve, he wants a little and wants
it often( in small quantities).
Dryness, sticking on swallowing, scraped and constricted
(Bell). Tough much in larynx and trachea, loosened only
after much hawking; worse coming into warm room.
Bryonia stands alongside of Nux
Vomica and Pulsatilla for
disorders of alimentation. All three remedies have a
sensation as of a stone in the stomach. Bryonia
leads in thirst, Nux vomica less, and
Pulsatilla little or none. All have bad
taste in the mouth; Bryonia and
Pulsatilla bitter and Nux Vomica
sour. All have nausea and vomitting; Bryonia
< on motion, as rising up, Nux vom in the
A.M. and after eating. Pusatilla in the
evening and also after eating.
The stomach complaints of Bryonia
are relieved from warm drinks; that becomes a particular
because his desire is for cold drinks, but his stomach
is better from warm drinks. In his fever and head
complaints and febrile states he wants cold things,
which often bring on and increase cough and pains, but
the hot drink, which he does not crave, relieve stomach
and bowel complaints. In the chill, Bryonia
often has desire for ice cold water, which chills him
dreadfully; and hot water relieves.
for cold and acid drinks."
Aversion to rich fat food, all greasy things,
for things which are not to be had."
The gastric derangements of Bryonia
often occur as a result of dietetic errors, especially
when warm weather sets in after cold. Those of Nux
vomica more from continued overeating and
inactivity, the abuse of drugs, coffee, tobacco, or
alcoholics; Pulsatilla from too rich
foods, pastries, fat foods and ice cream(in excess); a
little ice cream feels good in the Pulsatilla
stomach, but much overdoes the matter, because it is too
Bryonia has inflammation of the liver and many
other liver symptoms, with soreness and tenderness to
pressure, and he cannot move. Every motion, every touch,
every deep breath causes pain in this organ, as in the
abdominal viscera. The breathing is short, quick, and
when followed by taking a deep breath it causes pain
through the liver; it burns and stitches. With this, he
has the disordered stomach, nausea and retching worse
from motion; spitting up of bile. So he has burning
pain, stitches; worse pressure, coughing ,
breathing. Tenderness of abdominal walls.
Constipation: stools hard, dry, as if burnt, seem too
large. Stool brown, thick, bloody; worse in
morning, from moving, in hot weather, after
being heated, from cold drinks, every spell of hot
weather. It also has diarrhoea like other three
remedies viz. Bryonia, Nux Vom. & Pulsatilla
although constipation is most characteristic of
Bryonia and Nux Vomica, and is
only exceptionally found under
diarrhoea is worse in the morning,
on movement, and often occurs as an effect of ever
-eating, in the heat of summer. Nux vomica
diarrhoea is also apt to be worse in the morning, is
mostly caused by overeating and is apt to put on the
dysenteric type. The Pulsatilla diarrhoea
is more apt to occur in the night, from causes above
mentioned, and is attended with great rumbling of the
There are plenty of urinary symptoms in this remedy;
inflammatory condition of kidneys; pinkish urinary
deposits, uric acid crystals, urine profuse. Whenever
he strains himself in lifting, or any unusal motion,
there is pain the kidneys, a rousing up of congesting
and long-lasting pain. It is a gouty constitution with
kidney troubles, so that after overheating or
overexertion he gets pain the back.
to urinate and involuntary discharge of urine.
in urethra, when not urinating."
Relived by passing urine.
Menses too early, too profuse, worse from motion, with
tearing pains in legs; suppressed, with vicarious
discharges or splitting headache. Stitching pains
in ovaries on taking a deep inspiration: very sensitive
to touch. Dysmenorrhea; Every menstrual period is
associated with marked congestion of the ovaries, with
sensitiveness to touch. The sensitiveness at the
approach of every menstrual period, in both groins will
be spoken of by the patient, increasing as the
menstrual period comes on, until the soreness proceeds
across the abdomen and meets, and then the whole abdomen
is painful during the menstrual period. Pain in breasts
at menstrual period. Breasts hot and painful, hard.
Abscess of mammae. Freaquent bleeding of nose at
appearance of menses. Menstrual irregularities with
gastric symptoms. Ovaritis. Intermenstrual
pain, with great abdominal and pelvic soreness (Ham.).
Bryonia is very commonly indicated in Respiratory
diseases in our day to day practice. As earlier
mentioned about its characterstic action on mucous
surfaces producing dryness, the same condition applies
in the lungs and bronchia, which causes hard, dry cough
with little or no expectoration, and with soreness and
pain the chest when the patient coughs. (Nat. sulph
has loose cough with soreness). Cough dry at night<after
eating, drinking, with vomitting.The Bryonia
patient sits up and holds the head, or holds the chest;
presses both hands upon the chest when coughing, feels
as if the chest would fly to pieces when coughing; pains
in the chest on both sides but most the right side.
Bryonia prefers the right side when the condition is
pneumonia. Coming into warm
room excites cough.(Nat carb.).
Bryonia has also a very decided
effect upon the serous membranes . It is very useful in
the second stage of inflammation, after the stage of
serous effusion has set in. In most of these cases the
first stage has been attended by symptoms calling for
exhibition of such remedies as Aconite, belladonna,
Ferrum Phos., etc. but not always; and the
here the characteristic symtpom are the stitching pains
and this is why it is a prime remedy in pleurits,
meningits , peritionitis and pericarditis,
etc. Only one remedy can equal Bryonia for stitching
pains viz. Kali carb.(Stitching pains in the case are
particularly found in Bryonia, Kali carb,
Natrum mur, Squilla and Merc viv.) And there is this
difference between them: The Bryonia stitches
come on or are < by the lest motion, while those of
Kali carb will occur whether the patient moves or
not. (Bryonia > by pressure, Kali carb.,
not). Stitches in cardiac region. Angina
Pectoris (use tincture).
Painful stiffness in nape of neck. Stitches and
stiffness in small of back,. From hard water
and sudden changes of weather.
Rheumatism with rfed, swollen, hot, shiny joints. Rest,
touch and pressure relieve the pain. Stitching pains,
better with firm pressure, worse on motion.
Yellow; pale, swollen, dropsical; hot and painful.
Jaundice with stitching pain in the liver region.
Rheumatic and typhoid fever marked by gastro-hepatic
complications. Perspiration after slight exertion. Chill
with external coldness, dry cough, stitches.
Worse: Motion, Exertion, Light touch(Light touch
aggravates; deep touch ameliotrates.), Warmth, Exertion,
Eating warm food.
Rest, Cold foods, Firm pressure, lying on painful side
(this prevent motion), cold.
Alumina, Kalium carbonicum, Phosphorus, Rhus tox. And
Sulphur are complementary.
Summary of indications:
Alumina and Rhus toxicodendron are both
complementary as well as antidotes.