I am a long time fan of the seemingly miraculous homeopathic remedy that goes by the name of Topricin.
Topricin is a “natural” product that is effective (in my opinion) at alleviating sore joints, muscle pain, even when other topical remedies such as arnica gel don’t seem effective.
Here’s the deal, I met one of the employees at an event on day, and they gave me some of their product. As someone that knows many people with chronic back and joint pain, I was eager to see if it would be effective. To my surprise, it was.
Here’s the kicker, there are much more surprising things about Topricin than that!!!I never much looked into the ingredients, until today.
Want to learn the shocking truth about Topricin?
Then you won’t want to miss the rest of this article!
The other day I was struck by the name including “ricin” in it.
Being that many of the herbs I recognized the names of are “toxic” which are included in the product, I thought it wouldn’t be a far stretch that the name of the product would stand for “Topical Ricin”.
Now before I scare you off, it is important to remember that when I say “toxic” it really depends on the dosage. Many things, especially prescription drugs are extremely toxic, but it depends on the amount you use. I am not writing this to defame or bash Topricin, I am simply interested in whether the name is in fact derived from “Topical Ricin”, and if not, what does it mean?
In order to find out we will need to first take a look at the active ingredients. I had never known what was in the product till I made this chart. And there were some surprises.
|Listed Name||Common Name|
|Aesculus hippocastanum||European Horse Chestnut|
|Crotalus horridus||Timber Rattlesnake|
|Heloderma||Mexican beaded lizard|
|Lachesis mutus||Bushmaster Snake|
|Naja tripudians||Indian cobra|
|Rhus toxidendron||Poison Ivy|
|Ruta graveolens||Common rue|
Well, to be honest I was not expecting a few of those. I was under the impression that this product was plant based, I was wrong to say the least.
You are reading the chart correctly!
This product has not one, not two but 4 reptiles involved in it. I only assume that they are referring to the venom’s of the reptiles, and not the reptiles themselves.
Forget that this product has diluted poison ivy in it! But it also has snake and lizard venoms! WOW!
I was honestly not expecting this at all, but none of that answers whether or not the product stands for “topical ricin” or not, but at this moment so many more questions arise.
Again, to be clear I have used a lot of this product, but cobra, rattlesnake, lizard, and some snake from South Africa’s venom! Honestly not expecting that.
But I digress, does the product contain ricin?
From the listed ingredients it would appear that the product does not contain any ricin. As far as I can tell, ricin is only in castor beans.
So I will look for clues elsewhere. With some looking into the trademark and patent # 5,795,573 we can find some more clues as to where the name derived.
The first notable thing it the product description in the patent filing:
“A homeopathic topical anti-inflammatory and pain relieving composition containing an effective amount of the combination of Arnica Montana, Rhus toxicodendron and Aesculus hippocastanum together with belladonna in the form of a lotion, cream or gel.”
US Patent #5,795,573
Off the bat, we can see that it would not be a stretch that the name Topricin may be based off of the word “topical” as the product and all of Topricin’s products are topical. If Top- stands for topical it only stands to reason that the rest is self explanatory… -ricin.
But, that is not proof.
The product is registered under a company called TPR INTERNATIONAL LTD., INC. TPR (oddly similar to ToPRicin) standing for Technology & Patent Research, has been a technology and research company since 1995. Topricin is the only publicly filed patent by the San Diego based company.
With all of that however, based on all available public information I currently have no means of discovering the names origin at the time.
This part is to be continued….
But, wait there’s more!!!!!
Toxins and Homeopathy
The product is mostly made of toxic herbs and venoms, this is true. It is also marketed as safe and side effect free, as far as I know this is also true. I normally am turned off by homeopathy, but when it comes to toxic substances, it makes sense to some degree. As mentioned before, many things, in fact anything is toxic, but it all depends on how much you get.
The amount of herbs and venoms in this product are very minimal. There is also no arguing with the results, this stuff is really effective. The amount of each venom is around 1 part per million or 6x. Homeopathy is not something I am familiar with so I will let Jamie Capranos from Alive.com explain:
“The potency signifies how many times the arnica tincture has been diluted and succussed. The X corresponds with the Roman numeral 10, C with the Roman numeral 100. Therefore, a remedy such as Arnica montana 6X has been potentised 1 part mother tincture in 10 parts alcohol and water dilutant.
For example, 1 part in 10 x 10 x 10 x 10 x 10 x 10, or 1 in 1,000,000 = 6X.
Confusing at first, the more diluted and succussed a remedy is, the deeper it acts with more long-lasting effects. Hahnemann spent the better part of his life trying to understand how this was possible. Today there is still no widely agreed upon explanation of how homeopathy works.”
Honestly, I wouldn’t even give homeopathy a second glance in most cases, but this product works, and for a lot of people, that I personally know. There must be something to it.
According to homeopathy, the more diluted something is, the deeper and longer lasting the effect. This may have something to it, as Topricin impacts the “micro-capillaries” and says it is not absorbed into the blood stream. I used to be confused by this, but then I heard someone talk about the difference between arteries, capillaries and veins, it made a little more sense.
Arteries, Veins and Capillaries
Arteries, veins, capillaries and micro-capillaries are quite fascinating, and easily overlooked.
Arteries- Take blood away from the heart, with a high pressure. Like a river.
Veins- Take blood towards the heart, at a low pressure. Like a stream.
Capillaries- Smallest blood vessels. Care blood under very low pressure. Like a marsh.
I am supposing, that the product is not absorbed into the arteries or veins, because it functions to stimulate the capillaries, and micro-capillaries, and is absorbed before entering back into the bigger system.
So what does that have to do with the dilution of homeopathic herbs?
To be honest IDK, but it is an interesting concept. Perhaps a more diluted homeopathic remedy can reach deeper, because the particle sizes are so small that they somehow make it further in between the cells and veins. I really don’t get it, and am rambling on a bit much, so its time to wrap it up…
Anyhow, hopefully you learned something, I will be contacting Topricin, to attempt to find the etymology of the name. Until then…
Random Notes from Materia Medica, Toxicology and Pharmacology 1941
Scoplamine-(Hyoscine) an alkoloid from various plants of the Solanaceae family including Atropa Belladonna, Daturastramonium, Hypocampus niger, and Scopolia atropides. Pharmacological action sedative, antispazmadic, anodyne, and mydratic actions. Resembles atropine in its influence on nerve endings, differs in that it has sedative instead of stimulating effects on the brain.