As I was finishing up seeing a patient this morning I heard a screaming infant out in the waiting room. My initial thought was I hope I am not seeing this child but that was only wishful thinking.
As the mother carried her 16 month old child into the office he was screaming at the top of his voice, squirming to get loose and taking swings at his patient mother. Although he was covered in an eczematous rash this was obvious not the reason for the acute visit. The mother explained that he started crying yesterday and pulling at his ear and progressively got worse as the night wore on. They took him to the ER where he was diagnosed with an ear infection and given antibiotics and a decongestant. But within minutes of giving him the medication he became hysterical. This behavior was non stop and by the time he came in the office had been going on for 9 hours.
On examining the child he did have an ear infection. Because of his extreme discomfort and behavior I gave him a dose of Chamomilla 200c. Within 3-4 minutes he began to calm down some. I repeated the dose 10 minutes later and soon he was asleep. There are over 30 remedies that can be used to treat otitis media so the selection is based on the symptoms manifested by the patient. In this young boy it was his extreme behavior that led me to Chamomilla.
With the majority of ear infections being viral (unresponsive to antibiotics) in nature homeopathy is an invaluable alternative to the use of antibiotics.