Page images

the other the clinical, and then they compared notes. All the one hundred and five cases showed the clinical characteristics of enteric fever, whereas the remaining ten did not. When it is considered how difficult it is to exclude errors of diagnosis in an epidemic, the value of the test becomes obvious. Two cases were particularly instructive. The diagnosis lay between enteric and puerperal fevers. In the one case the patient was admitted after fourteen days' illness, and Widal's test was positive. Besides a puerperal endometritis, the characteristic lesions of enteric fever were found after death. In the other case the patient was sent in with the diagnosis of enteric fever, but the reaction was negative. At the necropsy a puerperal endometritis was found, but no lesions of enteric fever. A table is appended showing the details of the various cases. In none of the genuine cases did the reaction fail. The serum reaction enabled them to distinguish between diseases with symptoms resembling enteric fever and the abortive forms of the disease itself. In ten of the eighteen cases it made the diagnosis possible in the first week; of the remaining eight, five were not enteric fever, and three gave the reaction later. Of twenty-six examined in the second week of the illness, the reaction was positive in twenty-two, and the remaining four proved not to be typhoid. Of twentysix in the third week, twenty-four were positive, and the remaining two turned out not to be typhoid fever; sixteen examined in the fourth week, thirteen in the fifth, seven in the sixth, ten in the seventh, and five in the eighth, all gave positive results, and the disease presented the characteristics of enteric fever.-British Medical Journal.

A CASE OF ERYTHROMELALGIA (Weir Mitchell's Disease).-Dr. Rost, Prof. Oswald's assistant at the Augusta Hospital, Berlin, recently presented a case of this rare disease at the Verein fur Innere Medicin. As he has been able to find only some forty cases of it altogether in the literature, each case is of special interest. It aroused a good deal of attention and was carefully observed by most of those present. The opinion expressed by Dr. Rost, which seems to be that generally held here by the internists, is that of Dehio: He considers it an independent disease and due to a state of irritation of the cells of the anterior horns at certain levels in the cord. Some time ago a series of articles from Vienna claimed that it was a symptom-complex with intimate relations with such other affections as Raynaud's disease and the neurotic edemas. This view does not seem to meet with much favor in Germany, and its independent character as a disease with probably a special functional disturbance at least of definite anatomical elements is conceded. -- Philadelphia Medical Journal.

HEREDITARY LOCOMOTOR ATAXY.-Kalischer, at the Berliner Gesellschaft fur Psychiatrie (Neurol. Centralblatt., December, 1897,) showed a mother and son, aged fifty-one and twenty-seven years respectively, both suffering from typical locomotor ataxy. There was nothing whatever to

suggest syphilis either in the history or in the patients. In the mother the disease began at thirty-one years; in the son at twenty-six years of age. Other cases have been recorded in which the children of parents who had locomotor ataxy showed symptoms of the disease much earlier than in Kalischer's case, but it is pointed out that in children the diagnosis must be made with caution, as Friedreich's disease is easily mistaken for locomotor ataxy. The writer has been able to find two such cases where the diagnosis and hereditary locomotor ataxy in children seemed certain, and other doubtful cases are mentioned. —British Medical Journal.

INFLAMMABLE COMBs.—The Lancet of March 5th warns the public against the dangers of celluloid combs, citing one case in which severe burns were caused by the comb which was ignited by curling tongs. Experiments showed that these combs readily ignite by the degree of heat usually given the curling irons in use by ladies.

THE BORELLI INSTITUTO IATROMECCANICO, named in honor of the anatomist and physiologist Alfonso Borelli, of Naples (1608-1679), and designed for the practice of muscular therapeutics and the prosecution of physical education on a scientific basis, was recently opened in Rome.

The Roentgen RAYS IN Court.-A judge of the Superior Court of Connecticut recently refused to make a ruling in a damage suit to compel the application of the X-rays to test the question of injury to a bone. Expert testimony had been introduced to show the value of the rays in such


AMERICAN MEDICAL ASSOCIATION.-Dr. C. C. Fite, New York, N. Y., has resigned as Secretary of the Section on Materia Medica, Pharmacy, and Therapeutics of the American Medical Association, and Dr. Leon L. Solomon has been elected to fill the unexpired time.

The Ohio STATE MEDICAL, SOCIETY will hold its annual meeting at Columbus on May 4, 5, and 6, 1898, under the presidency of Dr. William H. Humiston, of Cleveland. Addresses will be delivered by Drs. Senn, of Chicago, and Hare, of Philadelphia.

ARTIFICIAL IMPREGNATION.—The Catholic authorities at Rome have rendered a descision forbidding the practice of artificial impregnation, devised by Sims. The reasons for this prohibition are not stated in the decree.

DEATH OF PROFESSOR STRICKER.—The cable reports the death of Prof. S. Stricker, professor of General and Experimental Pathology and Therapeutics in the University of Vienna. He was born in 1934.

ASSOCIATION OF AMERICAN PHYSICIANS.—The thirteenth annual meeting of this association will be held in Washington, on May 3, 4, and 5, 1898.

Special Notices.

ARISTOL INSTEAD OF IODOFORM.-Dr. Geo. L. Servoss, of Indianapolis, contributes the following interesting report from his practice: “In several cases of traumatism coming under my observation it has been my misfortune, when using iodoform, to see marked symptoms of iodoform poisoning, which disappeared when this drug was discontinued and replaced by aristol. Two cases in particular are worthy of note. J. R., a man of about forty years, was thrown from a carriage, receiving a scalp wound. After washing the wound carefully with bichloride solution 1-2,000 and shaving the adjacent parts, I inserted three or four stitches and applied a dressing of iodoforni and iodoform gauze. In twenty-four hours the wound appeared inflamed and irritable. Thinking that it was possibly due to iodoform irritation, I used aristol instead, and encountered no further trouble, the irritation subsided and the wound healed rapidly. The second case was that of a young man, eighteen years old, who had scratched his finger on the tin binder of a butter tub cover, the wound receiving only passing attention at the time. In the course of four or five days, however, the finger began to swell, and when he came under my observation there were symptoms of purulent infection, which necessitated opening at several points, washing out with hydrogen peroxide and other antiseptic solutions before suppuration ceased. When the wound became healthy I used an iodoform dressing, which was followed by an erythema that persisted until aristol was substituted, after which I experienced no further trouble, all irritation disappearing.” In conclusion Dr. Servoss says: "This being my experience in these and many other cases, I have almost abandoned iodoform and am using aristol almost exclusively. I have yet to see a case in which the least irritation has followed its use."

PETROLEUM EMULSION.—Although the medical properties of petroleum have been known since a very early date, yet it is only within a few years that the remedy has been prominently brought to the attention of the profession. There can be no question whatever but that petroleum is an oil which is digested and absorbed like any of the fatty foods. The oil is emulsified by the pancreatic juices and absorbed by the lacteals. The Angier Chemical Co. put petroleum on the market in the fotm of an emulsion because they believe that as the process of emulsifying thoroughly breaks up the oil into minute particles, it thus predigests it and puts it in a condition so that it can be absorbed at once. The Angier emulsion has combined with it the well-known hypophosphites. Each ounce of the emulsion contains 33/3 per cent of purified petroleum and twelve grains of the combined salts of lime and soda. In consumption, bronchitis, and in all the various diseases of the pulmonary tract, experience shows this preparation to be of great use.

NEURECTOMY FOR TIC-DOULOUREUX.-Bernay's “Report of a Surgical Clinic," complimentary to the Members of the Mississippi Valley Medical Association, contains the following in reference to his patient's condition and treatment before neurectomy for tic-douloureux was decided upon :

“Case 5. The patient, aged fifty, white, female. Family history : Has one sister who suffered from emotional insanity; otherwise the family history is good. Previous health excellent. The present trouble began with a severe neuralgic toothache, localized in the right lower molars. Paroxysms of pain were of daily occurrence, and most severe in the mornings about breakfast time. The pain subsided temporarily

[ocr errors]

whenever the teeth were pressed firmly together or upon any substance held between them, but only to return when the pressure was withdrawn. The presence of any thing cold in the mouth immediately produced the most exquisite pain; moderate heat produced a soothing effect. After two months the pain became continuous, and four molars were extracted without in any way relieving it. On the contrary, the pain increased in severity until October, when it ceased entirely for a period of two weeks, and then returned as severely as before. Another tooth was sacrificed, bnt without relief; the pain became continuous until last June, when it again subsided for a period of six weeks. A recurrence then took place, together with an involvement of the parts supplied by the second branch of the fifth nerve. Pain has been constant until the operation. She had strenuously avoided the use of narcotics, but during the more active periods of pain, antikamnia in ten grain doses was found to be efficacious obtunder.”. After describing the neurectomy, Prof. Bernays says: * Eight weeks have now elapsed since the operation, and no recurrence of the trouble has taken place."

TO THE IMPERIAL GRANUM COMPANY, New Haven, Conn. Dear Sirs: I have raised my baby on Imperial Granum, and no healthier child can be found in the city. She is three years old, weighs thirty-six pounds, and still has two meals a day, consisting almost wholly of Imperial Granum. Her last meal at night is Imperial Granum only. It is soothing, nourishing, and satisfying, and gives good sleep and no nightmare, which children so frequently have from improper evening feeding! I always speak enthusiastically for the Imperial Granum, for I know of no food that is as good for babies and children.

M. D. December 29, 1897.

THE usefulness of good Hypophosphites in pulmonary and strumous affections is generally agreed upon by the profession. We commend to the notice of our readers the advertisement on another page of this number. Robinson's Hypophoshites, also Robinson's Hyphophosphites with Wild Cherry Bark (this is a new combination and will be found very valuable) are elegant and uniformly active preparations; the presence in them of quinine, strychnine, iron, etc., adding highly to their tonic value.

MR. J. B. DANIEL: Dear Sir—The Passiflora preparations have both proved satisfactory. Gave some of the conct. tinct. Passiflora to a lady subject to very nervous spells, a multipara expecting confinement soon. She did not know what I gave her, but said “It was the best medicine I ever took”-she wants more.

Yours respectfully, Grassy Cove, Tenn.

A. M. BUTLER. LABOR SAVING: The American Medical Publishers' Association is prepared to furnish carefully revised lists, set by the Mergenthaler Linotype Machine, as follows:

List No. I contains the name and address of all reputable advertisers in the United States who use medical and pharmaceutical publications, including many new customers just entering the field. In book form, 50 cents.

List No. 2 contains the address of all publications devoted to Medicine, Surgery, Pharmacy, Microscopy, and allied sciences, throughout the United States and Canada, revised and corrected to date. Price, $1.25 per dozen gummed sheets.

List No. 2 is furnished in gummed sheets, for use on your mailer, and will be found a great convenience in sending out reprints and exchanges. If you do not use a mailing machine, these lists can readily be cut apart and applied as quickly as postage stamps, insuring accuracy in delivery and saving your office help valuable time,

These lists are furnished free of charge to members of the Association. Address CHARLES Wood Fassett, Secretary, cor. Sixth and Charles streets, St. Joseph, Mo.

[blocks in formation]

Certainly it is excellent discipline for an author to feel that he must say all he has to say in the fewest possible words, or his reader is sure to skip them; and in the plainest possible words, or his reader will certainly misunderstand them. Generally, also, a downright fact may be told in a plain way; and we want downright facts at present more than any thing else.-RUSKIN.

Original Articles.


BY FRANK C. WILSON, M. D. Professor of Diseases of the Chest and Physical Diagnosis in the Hospital College of Medicine; President

of the Louisville Medico-Chirurgical Society, etc., Louisville, K’y.

That diseases are communicated from patient to patient has been kuown from ancient times, but few of us realize how numerous are the avenues through which infectious germs gain access to the system. All admit the contagiousness of such diseases as smallpox, scarlet fever, measles, whooping cough, and mumps, but only in recent years has the communicability of tuberculosis been admitted. In my limited experience I can recall scores of instances where husbands or wives, strong and healthy, with no inherited tendencies to tuberculosis, have developed the disease within a few months after burying a companion. Every contagious or infectious disease has its specific contagium. Whether this be a specific germ or an impalpable and unrecognizable poison is immaterial, it is capable of self-multiplication and producing the disease in another system.

The microscope in the hands of the bacteriologist has accomplished much in discovering the specific germ in many diseases, and no doubt, sooner or later, no exceptions will be found. In some instances the germ or morbific material passes directly from one system to another, as in smallpox, measles, scarlet fever, etc. In other instances the contagium must first multiply in a suitable soil, under suitable conditions and surroundings, before being able to reproduce the disease in other systems. This is the case in typhoid fever, yellow fever, and cholera.

"Read before the Louisville Medico-Chirurgical Society, March 11, 1898.

« PreviousContinue »