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    Succinicum acidum

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    Dr. F. Swoboda and Dr. P. Koenig, OEGHM, Austria


    1984- 1985


    Double blind, placebo controlled trial




    Remedy unknown to the 12 provers


    Austroplant, Dr. Peithner KG, Austria

    Description of the substance

    A homeopathic drug proving- now termed a homeopathic pathogenetic trial- of Succ-ac., the amber

    Eine homöopathische Arzneimittelprüfung vonSucc-ac., der Bernsteinsäure


    Proving document in German language available in the German section

    Published in the Austrian journal Documenta Homoeopathica No.6

    see as well the German proving of Ol-succ.


    Proving of Acidum Succinicum D 30

    Master Prover: Dr. F. Swoboda, Dr. P, Koenig (Austria), 1984- 1985


    Proving symptoms:


    strong restlessness, cannot fall asleep in the evening, waking repeatedly at around 2 a.m. and cannot fall asleep again. Trembling, easily irritable, vulnerable, concentration difficult. Therefore this prover interrupts the proving. The disturbance of sleeping only dissapeared one month after this.



    in the second night after intake of the substance in the evening: a nightmare about a grave, in there are relics, bones and a sceleton, which wants to take the vital force off her. The prover feels gloomy for days, such dreams are unknown to her. No other dreams during the proving.


    3rd day: mood aggravates: Irritability, absent mindedness ( I am writing like a legasthenic person, I say good morning instead of thank you when someone offers a coffee to me). The following days she becomes depressed, " I am desperately looking for someone to help me, I am weeping while I consider myself now being without any friends, I am totally alone, helpless and in black dark depression". Her habbit of smoking changes from greedy smoking to disgust and back to greed, compulsive smoking and more than usual.

    Quarrels, shouts at the kids, which she feels sorry for afterwards. Interruption of the proving for these reasons after 13 days of Verum intake. The depression disappeared after 4 weeks.



    tired on various days, dizzy, can hardly bethink of something. As well: bad mood, irritability, little things take her aback, shouts at the kids.



    wants to be alone often- this is as unusual as her having no desire for sexual intercourse.



    irritable, crabby, quarrels; wants to withdraw into her room.

    " I cannot fall asleep in the evening, things of the day move like a film in front of my eyes (this occured repeatedly, it was known to her but never has been as intense as now).




    Headache, Vertigo, Senses:


    stitching in left eye and above for a short time- in the beginning of the proving, lasting for 3 days- once as well in bed in the evening, otherwise it came during daytime. Not painful.

    Smoking a cigarette once at forenoon, normally being a nonsmoker




    Alcohol is not tolerated well during the proving, the prover feels drunken already after little ammount of alcohol, which is very unusual to him.



    suddenly hears less good during a conversation, he had to ask the other person to repeat what he said.



    in the afternoon, being outdoors, I noticed the agreeable smell  of a cigarette. I am a non smoker and usually I find the smell disgusting“

    For several days recurrent stitching first in the left, then in the right ear.



    since long, this prover suffered of pressing pains at her forehead, mostly „ right side behind eyebrow“. These pains, which she described as being annoying come up much more frequently from of intake onwards and after stopping the substance, reducing in frequency compared to her normal condition. Known to her was the aggravation in open air and the amelioration when lying.



    since long time, the prover suffered of pressing, boring pain at right forehead, which did not occur during the proving and reduced markedly in freqency until 3 months after the proving. Usual modalities of her headaches: sometimes triggered by stress, agg. from mental exertion, afternoon, on bending and on rising from bending. Watery eyes inside, eruption at ear (concha).



    from 14.nd day of intake of the verum, the prover refused to drink milk, later she refuses as well drinking coffee. She cannot say why, no obvious reason for this, there were no complaints due to milk or coffee. 3 weeks after finishing the proving, she returned to like milk and coffee.



    2 days after the finishing of the proving, the 25 year old female prover started getting vertigo, which lasted for 14 days: in the morning on waking, „all is turning in front of my eyes“, „nearly fainting, dizzy“. Vertigo occurs as well when lying down in the evening, especially when turning the head while lying, but never during daytime (- she never had these complaints before).







    cannot get rid of a common cold: discharge of puslike mucus from nose during complete proving, hoarseness, scraping in throat, irritating cough starting from Jugulum, recurrent short slight coughs. Together with this, constant feeling of coldness, freezing.



    less sensitive to smell around 30th day, which lasts for several days.



    sudden, constant, strong watery secretion from nose and eyes, secretion from nose, which makes the skin feel sore, Later, the nose is obstructed but still running nose continuously. Nevertheless, with these symptoms, the prover feels well. Secretion stays for 4 days, during these days the itching of ekzema (described in the area „Skin“) is much less.

    Note: this symptom appeared at the end of January (no season for allergic rhinitis in Europe) and the prover had no allergic symptoms known to her.



    has to clear her throat, feels mucus in throat, which she cannot bring out through coughing.







    cannot tolerate the cold, especially in the evening before going to bed she feels especially cold.



    tendency to colds, cannot become warm, cold feet despite thick socks. Sensation of coldness around chest. Cold sensation in area of kidneys.



    cold fingers less frequently than usual, but feet are now nearly always feeling cold.



    feverish sensation in the evening, despite this, she feels well. Pulserate while resting 140/min. (the following day, no signs of a common cold).



    during proving, feels less chilly than usual.

    Note: the proving took part during a very cold winter with temperatures between – 10 to – 20 degrees Celsius and below. In this respect, these symptoms were especially carefully chosen.






    Mouth, Throat, Digestive tract


    boring nagging sensation of hunger, as well shortly after eating, eating amel. General feeling of well being.

    Pressure in epigastrium with slight nausea in the afternoon. Amel. in the evening after drinking a few sips of water. With this, food disgusts.

    Abdomen seems bloated after a eating a little dinner, with nausea. Amel. while standing, while bending, while lying on back. With this, aversion to alcohol (this is especially noticiable to him).

    Pressure in stomach after little ammount of alcohol (recurrently).



    sore gums- vesicles and erosions at gums



    for several days nausea in the late evening: amel. by local warmth, pressure, lying down and drawing up knees, no change by eating ( these complaints are unknown to the prover so far).



    fullness, bloated feeling upper abdomen, eructations and flatulence, „sensation as if the food is not digested very well“, then for 3 days tenesm and bright, fatty, piercingly smelling stools (like amoniak? Ose`s questioning), as well as watery stools. (the prover cannot remember to have had such complaints).

    Stitching pain in a tooth, which has been treated by the dentist 6 weeks before, then lasting dull pain and slight sensitivity to pressure.



    several times passing stool only every second day- this is felt highly unusual to the prover- as usually, stool passing at least once a day, with tendency to diarrhea ( M. Meulengracht known to the prover as a diagnosis).



    in the beginning of the proving, soft stools lasting for 2 weeks, with tenesm during the first days, later painless stools. After this, normal stools.

    After last intake of verum, again the stools are softer, normal color, similar to the beginning of the proving. These symptoms are unknown tot he prover so far and do not reoccur in the 3 months after the proving.



    VI. Urinary tract and genital area:



    burning during urination with redness and soreness in sulcus coronarius glandis (this occured at the beginning of the 3rd week, lasting for several days). This symptom was known to the prover, he once had this when he was a little boy)


    10 days after finishing the intake, when the prover decided to interrupt the proving due to the psychic complaints, the following symptoms appeared:

    pain in left testicle, of drawing character, extending along the spermatic cord. The pain appears all of a sudden in a fit and are so strong that the prover feels nauseous when touching the testicle during  a fit of pain. No outer changes visible at the testicles. The fits of pain appear first 1-2x per day, later 1-2x per week, after 4 months only occasionally and less strong than in the beginning.



    menses appears already the day (usually between 25- 27th day). The next menses appears already after 14 days. After this, the prover became pregnant.



    menses:  markedly less bleeding during the 2 cycles following the proving, bleeding only for 1-2 days, less duration and ammount of blood (usually 4-5 days)




    VII Sceleton, Extremities


    insecure feeling in ankles, has to take care not to injure himself while leaving the car. Cutting pain in left elbow and in right knee during one day. Pain in knee agg. while standing and reduced when walking for a while.



    Burning, „sore“ pain behind sternum and „sensation in the thoracic spine as if torn“ (amel. at the following day). sudden strong stitching pain behind sternum left side, extending to basis of tongue, with feeling of anxiety. Agg. by inspiration, then after a few minutes, the pain disappears. The prover is 30 years of age and describes this condition as nearly being angina pectoris- like.

    Drawing pain in wrists accompanied by local sensation of coldness.




    VIII Skin and ...


    a known dry eczema at lower leg is less itching during the first weeks of the proving, afterwards it is itching more than before.



    dry, papulous eczema around umbilicus and at the bending sides of lower arms close to the wrists appear during first week oft he proving. The eczema disappears after a few days.

    Later, itching at both lower legs appear during some days ( in anamnesis of this prover, he had once an allergic exanthema many years ago).



    during the proving (beginning of wintertime), the known itching of inner thighs is very strong. This usually appears every autumn, but now a lot aggravated „ I scratch until I am exhausted“.



    from 4th week onward, paresthesias (felt as a slight burning) and (more often) hyperesthesias at fingers. Mostly right thumb, less often 3rd and 4th finger of the right hand and left thumb. These sensations appeared in fits, often several times during the day and disappeared a few weeks after finishing the proving.


    Further sensations are: „ I cannot touch anything without feeling pain in my fingertips“, „ pain in toes of right foot in the evening“, „fingers strongly hurt when I strike against something“. The nail of left index finger splits after a minimal trauma in a flat extent, fingertip hurts. The skin is even more dry than usual, itching is worse, especially at legs and there especially the bends of knees. In the sauna, the itching is that strong that he has to scratch all the time.




    pins and needles at radial side of right thumb. „ while walking, when the arm was hanging down, the feeling of pins and needles extended up to the elbow, there I felt a kind of warmth.“ This lasted for half an hour and did not reoccur.

    Skin of face more fatty than usual.

    During the proving, markedly less itching at lower arms than usual.

    Note: the prover took part in the proving of Abrot. of the last year and then suffered of marked aggravation of the itching.



    praetibial hyperesthesia right side, lasting for 1 week.

    Note: the prover was much concerned about this symptom, thought of multiple sclerosis!



    Skin is more dry than usual. At 10th day, a dry, papulous, highly itchy exanthema appears at both thumbs and index fingers, which expands to eczema and leads to interruption of the proving.  Expansion up to back of hands, ulnar side of lower arms, appears as well at lobes of ears and outer side of ear conchae an das well at occiput in the hairy part. Itching becomes intermediately better during a common cold with a running nose. The eczema lasts for about 2 months.

    In Anamnesis of this prover, a dermatitis after contact with desinfection detergens is known.



    Skin more dry than usual



    4 itching knots appear at the upper body, red surrounding of 2 cm diameter. After 2 hours, they are gone again. Unknown to the prover before and after the proving.




    Comment and picture of the proving:

    Dorci (an Austrian homeopath) lists Acid-succ. in his Materia medica as being a lithaemic remedy. In the mean time, he states the constitutional signs as „pale, cold, wet, weak“ (compare other acids!).  - so for us, being the analysts of  the proving, this substance has been a lithaemic one- before we knew it`s name:

    Symptoms in the joints (stitching, cutting, as if torn), paresthesias, mucus which leaves the skin sore, the extraordinary sensitivity to coldness and the reaction of the substance to the genital organs in both male and female led us to think into this direction from the very beginning. As well the rather irritable mood with the desire to be alone and the affinity to stimulants, which appeared repeatedly during the proving, did fit well to the concept of lithaemia. So the experience of Dorci was fully confirmed by our proving experiment, as well as the multiple proving symptoms listed by Dorci, which appeared as well in our proving.


    Another reason to list Acid-succ. under Lithaemia is the chemical similarity of Acid-succ. with Acid- benzoicum - lacticum- salicylicum and – tartaricum (Tartarus emeticus), which are as well counted as sycotic remedies. The astonishing similarities can be shown with single symptoms – think about the „nervous“ symptoms of Acid-oxal. (thinking of complaints agg.), or the characteristics oft he pains of Acid- oxal. („small circumscribed spots and highly sensitive to touch“). The fact that this substance is a resin points as well into sycotic direction (compare Copaiva balm, Guaj, Gummi gutti).


    As well the old notes of Burnett about Acid.- succ. are confirmed in our proving, such as the hemi- hyperesthesia.


    The similarity with Ambra was already mentioned at other places. Proving symptoms like sleeplessness, nervous itching of skin, irritable cough and paresthesias at the acres could lead us to think of Ambra. Although the English name is similar, there could not be found any trace of Acid. Succin. in Ambra.


    DD Colchicum (vertigo, paresthesia, intolerance of alcohol)


    Finally we were searching for Acid-succ. in mushrooms. Our proving substance was confounded in the beginning with Bovista (quality of menses, itching of skin, depressed state- prover 6). In fact, in Bovista, the „Gammaguanido- butteracid“ is very similar to Succinicum acidum in it`s chemical structure. The high content of Succin. acid in Armillariella polymyces was already mentioned (not translated yet). Starting from these thoughts, it is not far away to one of our most important remedies for complaints at the acres (fingertips)- which is Secale cornutum. But the organic acids which Secale contains are only the („Benztrauben- acid“) in high concentration and the effect of Sec. on the acres seem to be mainly due to the Lyserg-acid derivates.

    After the results of our proving we would count Acid-succ. as a remedy for Raynaud`s disease.


    Areas of indications: combining the „nervous weakness“ of the acids together with the red thread of the lithaemia, which runs throughout the proving.


    One find indications like „sycotic“ headache, saisonal or non- saisonal rhinitis, Asthma bronchiale (nervosum), skin symptoms and rheumatic complaints, arriving to Mind symptoms in this sense.

    We want to underline the effects on the skin. On one hand, the suppressions like in prover 23, on the other hand the strong itching seems to be important, which in this case is rather to be counted as a sycotic than a psoric symptom.