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An informational catalog, or several catalogs, about Homeopathy.


The original serial dilutions by Hahnemann used a 1 part in 100 (centesimal; 'C' potencies), or 1 part in 50,000 ( Quintamillesimal; 'LM'or'L' potencies). James Tyler Kent later introduced the Decimal potencies ('D' or 'X' potencies). The dilution factor at each stage is 1:100 ('C' potencies), 1:50,000 ('LM' potencies) or 1:10 ('D' or 'X' potencies)

X Scale C Scale M Scale LM Scale Ratio Note
1X 1:10 described as low potency
2X 1C 1:100 called higher potency than 1X by homeopaths
3X 1M 1:1000
1LM 1:50,000 The 1/50,000 dilution ratio was to replace the 1/100 ratio as it was very powerful yet gentler than the higher potency centesimals.[1]
6X 3C 10-6
8X 4C 10-8 allowable concentration of arsenic in US drinking water[2]
2LM 4 x10-10
12X 6C 10-12
3LM 8 x10-15
24X 12C 10-24
60X 30C 10-60 Dilution advocated by Hahnemann for most purposes.
400X 200C 10-400 Dilution of popular homeopathic flu remedy Oscillococcinum
Note: the "X scale" is also called "D scale". i.e. 1X = 1D, 2X = 2D


Problematic terminology
Concept Terms preferred by homeopaths Terms preferred by non-homeopath physicians
Trained and licensed health professionals who do not recommend homeopathy. conventional physicians, allopath Physician, biomedical specialist, non-homeopathic physician
Trained and licensed health professionals who follow a homeopathic methodology, in the category the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine calls a "whole" system, or an alternative to mainstream medicine. Homeopath, or if an MD/DO or licensed ND, "homeopathic physician" Alternative practitioner using homeopathy
Someone who believes that homeopathy is an essentially perfect system that needs only minor refinements, and that every case is inherently different  ?? some distinctions as made in types of chiropractic approach not mainstream physicians and biomedical scientists
Someone who believes that Hahnemann defined a system that was superior to what the other kind of practitioner did in the 19th and early 20th century, but was largely made obsolete by processes that can be defined and measured, yet used with judgment appropriate for the individual skeptic, critic Biomedical scientist, one trained by the evolved system proposed by Abraham Flexner
Bodily responses to abnormality (symptoms or signs), for which molecular or other objective mechanisms can be described in substantial detail Symptoms (or a symptom listed in a homeopathic repertory is called a rubric) no single term: metabolic homeostasis (biology) (including anabolism and catabolism, mitosis and apoptosis, immune mechanisms (see note below) including cell-mediated [note 1] and humoral immunity [note 2]
Bodily responses to abnormality (symptoms or signs), for which no formal mechanism is defined Vital force Idiopathic condition
The thing added to a larger amount of something so the thing can be taken by the patient simillimum active ingredient; drug
Guidance on best treatment (medical training and literature (Note 4), clinical decision support system & materia medica, repertory (medical training and literature (Note 4), clinical decision support system
The thing administered to an individual to cause a measurable physiologic reaction  ??? active ingredient; drug
The thing administered to an individual to cause a measurable immune response, usually active immunity. There may be immediate symptoms, but producing them is not a goal vaccine/antigen vaccine, antigen
The something to which the small amount of the other thing can be added water (but there apparently are things that are not water, such as ethanol), or, in the body of the article, lactose. Is water the only something that has memory? Diluent (water & ethanol), vehicle(lactose)
Opinion and trust not based on statistical analysis Popularity Lay opinion
Administration of a substance to healthy volunteers to determine its effects Homeopathic proving Phase I randomized controlled trial

Note 1: phagocytosis, agglutination as by eosinophils, nonspecific recognition by macrophages

Note 2: changes in immunoglobulins, complement, opsonization

Note 3: terminology conflict: while a homeopathic preparation is considered, by homeopaths, to have the desired effect of producing symptoms, physicians do not necessarily regard symptoms as physiologic changes. signs, clinical pathology results, and changes in diagnostic imaging do indicate change

Note 4: A pair of standard texts such as Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, cross-referenced to Goodman & Gilman's Pharmacological Basis of Therapeutics are regarded as starting points -- but need not be consulted in every case.


  1. Hahnemann's Advanced Methods by David Little; Part 4: The LM Potency
  2. Arsenic in drinking water. United States Environmental Protection Agency.