Keynote Materia Medica published by CCRH

Book Review – Keynotes Materia Medica Volume -I

Keynote prescription has been an indispensable part of our homeopathic practice since inception. The concept is as long as homeopathy, but was given a boost by H. C. Allen, to whom we must pay our gratitude. Keynotes play a major role in our day to day practice. Almost every other day we hear senior physicians suggesting us to go through Keynotes every day to flourish our practice to newer heights. Practicing Keynotes is like an art which must be followed by heart.

To keep the spirit of Keynotes high and with aim to update them, Central Council for Research in Homoeopathy (CCRH) has undertaken an initiative to compile Keynotes Materia Medica from authentic sources. The book is a work of dedication added to ever growing sea of materia medicas, being authentic and simple. The salient information regarding the book can be summarized as: –

  • Name of Book: Keynotes of the Homoeopathic Materia Medica
  • Volume: I
  • Drug compiled: 25
  • Author information:
    • Chief Editor: Dr. Chaturbuja Nayak
    • Editor: Dr. Chinta Raveendar
    • Assistant Editor: Dr. Debadatta Nayak
    • Expert Committee:
      • Prof. (Dr.) S. K. Bhattarcharya
      • Prof. (Dr.). L. K. Nanda
      • Dr. V. K. Chauhan
      • Dr. S. Praveen Kumar
      • Dr. Ajit Kulkarni
      • Dr. Asha Chowdhry
  • Printed and published by: Central Council for Research in Homoeopathy (CCRH), an autonomous Organization under Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Deptt of AYUSH, Govt. of India, 61-65, Institutional area, Opp. D Block, Janak Puri, New Dehli 110058. Tel: 011-28525533, Fax: 011-28521060. Email: Website:
  • ISBN Status: 978-81-920840-5-3
  • Copyright status: Copyright with CCRH
  • Price: 120/- INR
  • Availability status: Yes, available at CCRH Headquarters, can be ordered by post.

In the present work author(s) have expressed the need to have an updated version of existing keynote materia medica, as there are various instances where practitioners report ambiguity, spelling mistakes, improper arrangements of symptoms etc.  Moreover, there are certain concepts/old terms which are obsolete now days. This is need of the hour to update such information for our own knowledge sake and evolution.

The compilation has beautifully collected keynotes, keeping “Keynotes by HC Allen” as base and addition of keynotes from authentic source books like – Hering’s Guiding Symptoms of our Materia Medica, Hahnemann’s Materia Medica Pura, J. H. Clarke’s dictionary of Practical Materia Medica and Pocket manual of Homoeopathic Materia Medica by William Boericke. It is worth mentioning here that no additions from any experience, verification or by other means have been included in this book. Therefore, this book is a pure compilation of keynotes from authentic source books, and may aptly be called keynote pura.

In addition to compilation, authors have given some interesting and useful sections loaded with information from various sources. Basic information about drug such as botanical/chemical name, source, part(s) used, habitat, constituents/molecular formula, etc., followed by an introduction, are some of the new headings you will discover in this book. Here also, the information is primarily derived from Homoeopathic Pharmacopoeia of India (HPI). The source of information if other than HPI is mentioned in the footnote of remedy. The keynotes are supplemented with keywords, sphere of action, makeup of the remedy, ailments from and guiding features which make this materia medica handy and informative from the first line itself. The schema of each remedy is placed as per Generals (Mental and Physical) followed by Particulars (arranged as per systems of the body). Care has been taken to replace old terms with latest ones, but some old terms are kept owing to their historical value associated with homeopathy.

The book has compiled drugs according to the official syllabus for 1st professional year of undergraduate students of homeopathy in India endorsed by Central Council of Homoeopathy. This limits the number of drugs compiled to 25 only in volume – I. This work will be carried on to volume – IV, keeping in view the syllabus of 2nd, 3rd and 4th BHMS. This fact may be considered as one of the minor drawback of this compilation. Since such a compilation will come periodically with limited number of drugs, readers would have to wait more for such handy and authentic book. It is sincerely hoped that authors might consider publishing more number of remedies (beyond recommended for this book) in one or two handy volumes, for the benefit of profession.

All in all, this book is a good and handy compilation of keynotes for both practitioners and students.

Book review by Dr. Saurav Arora
BHMS (Delhi), Gold Medalist

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