Hekla lava - the volcanic Expression

Dr.S.Mohamed Aleem
Dr.Koppikar’s Homoeopathy Clinic
#21,Mahalakshmi Street, T.Nagar
Chennai –60017.
Phone: +91-44-24341309 EMail:mdaleem@eth.net


Hekla Lava, the remedy is being used scarcely in our practise, Dr.Mohamed Aleem, an eminent physician, based at Chennai brings its remarkable expressions and applications. He is a well-known speaker and also presented many articles in leading journals. He works with Dr. S. P. Koppikar, worlds renowned Homoeopath since twenty years. He was the Editor of Homoeo pulse and has been honoured with awards in many functions.

Hekla is an active volcano in southern Iceland 110 km east of Reykjavík, the capital. Hekla stands 4,892 ft above sea level. Hekla, known in early times as the Mountain of Hell, erupted 14 times between 1104 and 1970, with major eruptions occurring in 1300, 1766, and 1947; the 1766 explosion caused great loss of life.

Volcano is any vent in the crust of the Earth or other planet or satellite, from which issue molten rock, pyroclastic debris, and steam. Volcanoes figure prominently in the mythology of many peoples who have learned to live with eruptions, but science was late in recognizing the important role of volcanism in the evolution of the Earth. One major 18th-century school of thought held that molten rock and volcanoes were simply accidents caused by burning coal seams. Geologists today agree that volcanism is a profound process resulting from the thermal evolution of planetary bodies. Heat does not easily escape from large bodies by conduction or radiation. Instead, partial melting and buoyant rise of magma are major contributors to the process of heat flux from the Earth’s interior. Volcanoes are the surface manifestation of this thermal process, which has its roots deep inside the Earth and which hurls its ashes high into the atmosphere. These facts reflects its homoeopathicity when studied on the basis of law of signature.

Lava is the magma (molten rock) poured out onto the Earth’s surface at temperatures from about 700° to 1,200° C (1,300° to 2,200° F). The viscosity ranges from about 100,000 times that of water to the point that the lava can scarcely flow at all. The surface of lava is mostly exceedingly rough, covered with a layer of partly loose, very irregular fragments commonly called clinker.

Hekla lava was introduced to homoeopathy by Dr. Garth Wilkinson. His observations of the effect of Hekla lava, while traveling in Iceland, is the basis of the homoeopathic prescriptions given so far. A beautiful account of Dr. Garth Wilkinson’s observations are given by Dr. Clarke in his ‘Dictionary of Practical Materia Medica’. In this article I have tried to bring out another dimension of Hekla lava as emerged from my clinical cases. Cases treated with Hekla lava: I have been using Hekla lava in low potencies like 3x and 6x empirically in cases of bone pathology and dental pathology with or without beneficial effects since I started my practice. My understanding of the real personality of Hekla lava started with a case of osteosarcoma of proximal end of right tibia. He underwent three surgeries. As it kept recurring he wanted to try homoeopathy. This is the case with which first I felt the rhythm of Hekla lava.

He gave he following story when I asked him how the problem first started: One day he was walking along a main road in Colombo with his elder brother. Suddenly a group of people, who belong to a rival Group, carrying guns came from nowhere and started shooting his brother. Within a wink of time his brother dropped down dead. Mr. X. was terribly shocked. He felt a sort of volcano erupting deep from him. But he was absolutely helpless. That was the time first he felt an excruciating pain in the upper part of the right leg. But in that situation he could not give any importance to that pain. Within few days of this incidence he forgot the pain completely.

Few weeks after this incidence, he happened to get into a heated argument with one of his family members. When one of his points was objected and contradicted by the other person, he again felt a similar volcano like emotion erupting from deep inside him. At the same time he also felt an excruciating pain in the upper part of the right leg and he fainted. After few days of this incident, he saw a swelling there. Then he went to the hospital in Colombo and orthopedician’s advice was sought. The diagnosis osteosarcoma was established there.

In the course of the interview, he described about himself as a very calm and poised person. But when provoked he used to burst into violent temper.
Once he gets the anger, he could not control himself. He used to shout at others whoever it may be. He often used words that offended others. He also confessed that in few occasions he had beaten those who offended him. Though he was aware of his shortcomings, he used to feel absolutely helpless.
Physically he was well built in spite of his malignant disease. He spoke with soft tone and looked very gentle.
His repeated expression that “as if a volcano erupts from deep within myself,” reminded me of volcano itself as the possible remedy for him and the established bone pathology gave me the confidence to prescribe Hekla lava to him. I gave him Hekla lava 30 and instructed him to take 2 pills once in 3 hours till the pain subsides. Three days after taking the pills, again he reported to me. His pain was very much better and stopped taking all his painkillers.

He left India with sufficient stock of Hekla lava 30 to be used as S.O.S. Since this time I have lost tract of him though I instructed him to keep me informed about the state of his health. I do not know whether he is still improving or not.

The fact that he had initial improvement showed me that the medicine acted on him. This case symbolically represented the qualities of volcano.
What are the qualities of volcano? Volcano usually looks gentle, but once start erupting, it behaves very violent, blasts with blaze, the hot lava destroys and hurts everything around the volcano. The same behaviour is expressed by this patient. Though Hekla lava was not a well-proved remedy, the law of signature of Paracelsus helped me in establishing the homeopathicity of Hekla lava to the patient with osteosarcoma. I have given the features of Volcano and Mount Hekla in introduction for the readers to comprehend clinically synthesized symtomatology of Hekla lava.

Later, I had a case of cracked skin of face. These cracks appeared overnight. There was intense burning pain. The cracks ran in all directions. Over the cracks ashy, fragile crusts formed. This man was tall and well built. This patient was also gentle in disposition but used to become violent when he was provoked. He was highly sensitive to admonitions, criticisms and injustices done to him and to others. This sensitivity often led into irritability. But he used to suppress the anger. Once in a while when his anger went beyond his control, he became violent. With Hekla lava 30, the burning pain came down within five days and the cracks disappeared completely within two weeks. This case confirmed my observations of the symbolic expression of Hekla lava in osteosarcoma case.

A schoolteacher, who valued discipline too high, was suffering from duodenal ulcer. She suffered from burning pain that used to come suddenly and go suddenly < in empty stomach; > by eating. All her three episodes were precipitated by severe confrontations with her husband who was a drunkard. She used to quarrel with her husband and many times became hysterically violent, throwing the things like books, plates, and etc. on him.

Medicines like Staphysagria and Proteus gave no relief. Hekla lava 30, repeated doses, helped in her recovery. Hekla lava 30 cured a case of scabies in a boy. The eruptions first started on the buttocks and within three days spread all over the body. He was highly restless suffering from intense burning pain. The burning pain came in bouts. He was not able to give any modality but said that the pain used to come at any time and disappear at any time. His parents told that he was always stubborn and highly irritable. He could not withstand any contradiction. For outsiders he looked very gentle but at home he was very abrupt and violent in his behaviours. Recently I have been treating many cases of Sinusitis, fistulas, weeping eczemas, etc., on the indications: thick and viscid discharge forming fragile crusts and intense burning pain that comes and goes suddenly.

A symptom given in Hering’s Guiding symptoms is expressed better in Vermeulen’s Concordant Materia Medica: Polypoid growth commencing in maxillary sinus and from thence encroaching upon adjacent structure so as to deform face, forcing eyeball upward and everting lid, and obstructing nostrils; downward into mouth, so that breathing and mastication were seriously impeded; epistaxis; headache. This symptom helped me in treating many cases of polyp in maxillary sinus with better result. I was fortunate to cure one such case with Hekla lava after a partial relief with Calcarea flourica.

  • Hekla lava may be prescribed not only for the bone and dental disorders but like any other polychrests may be prescribed for the organic and functional disorders of any organ and tissue of our body.
  • Hekla lava has its own personality, which is the symbolic expression of the general behaviour of volcano.
    Below I give the synthetic materia medica of Hekla lava:


Shock; Indignation; Suppression of emotions, esp. anger; Head injury and space occupying lesions in head; Injury to bone; Tooth extraction and other dental surgeries.
Mental Symptoms:

  • Generally gentle but highly irritable when provoked.
  • Violent Anger, hurts others by words and by physical inflictions; in other words, wounds others mentally and physically.
  • Stubborn.
  • Sensitive to admonitions and injustices done to self and/or to others.
  • Abrupt.
  • Feeling of helplessness.
  • Sensation as if a volcano erupts from deep within.
  • Symptoms come suddenly and go suddenly.
  • All symptoms are violent in nature.
  • Intense burning.
  • Tumours and exostoses.
  • Ulcers.
  • Cracks.
  • Fissures.
  • The discharges are thick, viscid and ashy in colour.

Ø Ashy, fragile crusts.
Ø Rapidity, Violence and Burning.
Related Remedies:

Silicea, Sulphur, Alumina, Calcarea carbonica, Calcarea fluorica, Magnesia carbonica, Ferrum metallicum, Belladonna, Staphysagria, Proteus, Kali bichromicum, Hydrastis, Mezerium, Cinnabaris and other Mercurial preparations, Nitric Acid and all other acids, Syphilinum, Carcinosin.

The materia medica given above is compiled mostly from the cases what I treated and the information available in other materia medicas. Due to constrain in space, I have not given the various particulars available in other materia medicas. Dr. Clarke’s ‘Dictionary of Practical Materia Medica’, Dr. Vermeulen’s ‘Concordant Materia Medica’ and Dr. Murphy’s ‘Lotus Materia Medica’ give a good account of various particulars of Hekla lava.

Just few cases cannot help in constructing the whole materia medica of Hekla lava. But as I could perceive the symbolic expression of Hekla lava in these cases, the above symptoms must be at least a part of the totality of Hekla lava. I request all my reader friends to try Hekla lava wherever the above picture is available and to communicate to me both the successes and failures.


1. Mohamed Aleem, The Rhythm of Volcano,
Homoeopathic Links, No. 1-Vol. 7, 1994.
2. William Boericke, Pocket Manual of Materia Medica
with Repertory.
3. John H. Clarke, Dictionary of Practical Materia
4. John H. Clarke, The Cure of Tumours.
5. Constantine Hering, Guiding Symptoms of Our
Materia Medica.
6. Robin Murphy, Lotus Materia Medica.
7. Frans Vermeulen, Concordant Materia Medica.
8. Frans Vermeulen, Synoptic Materia Medica II.
9. Encylopaedia Britannica 2002 Deluxe Edition CD ROM
10. Multimedia World History