Since all biologically active substances can cause side effects, and since apparently the body that is sick is more sensitive to a substance that causes similar symptoms, treatment guidelines for the use of a homeopathic (similar to the disorder) medicine require that only a minimal dose of the substance be used. Experimentally, even extremely small doses of the similar medicine can cause a curative response.
The search for the ideal dose that would cause no adverse effects led to the discovery of the technique of potentization – a method of preparing medicines that have no toxic effects. The crude medicine is diluted in a water/alcohol mixture in sequential steps, in a specific proportion, such as 1/100 (centesimal or C potency). After each step of dilution, the mixture is shaken (succussed) a specified number of times.
This gradual dilution and agitation of the mixture permits a reduction of the toxic properties, while retaining certain electromagnetic properties of the medicinal substance within the solvent. Even dilutions beyond Avogadro’s number (where presumably no molecule of the substance remains) have shown clinical action. These doses show virtually no adverse effect and are therefore often used in homeopathy.
Studies in vivo and in vitro have corroborated these observations. With the discovery of the infinitesimal dose, it was possible to treat homeopathically without producing a drug disorder (i.e. drug side effects). The use of the minimum dose – the energetic medicine – makes homeopathy one of the safest methods of curative medical treatment available.