Page images
PDF
EPUB

plished with such success as to be an important element in the constantly enlarging reputation of the Medical College, whose increasing numbers extended the name and fame of the University

Dr. Palmer's interest in the students and zeal for their improvement, were illustrated in devising additional means of instruction and widening the range of their acquirements, and to this end he prepared, and in the evening gave some lectures on botany.

His powers of endurance and capacity for labor seemed to be equalled only by anxiety to employ every means that could promote the welfare of students, and he appeared never weary in well-doing, and was what I may properly call a “minute man," ever ready to fill an hour made vacant by illness, or some mishap of a colleague.

He believed in carrying out the programme by the Faculty as well as by students, an example of fidelity, characteristic of the man in all official duties.

Students from the University go east as well as west, and one who graduated here in 1855, remembering his ability and fidelity, promptly acquiesced in the suggestion that while unoccupied in the University, he might be secured for a professorship made vacant in derangements caused by the war; and as a result Dr. Palmer was invited to give the lectures on Materia Medica in the Berkshire Medical Institution at Pittsfield, Massachusetts, in the fall of 1863, and he also gave the course on Practice for that and the four succeeding years. Probably as a result of this work in the east, in 1869 he was appointed to the chair of Practice in the Medical School of Maine, in Bowdoin College, at Brunswick. He continued to lecture there with great satisfaction till the extension of the term in this institution to nine months required his presence here, and his resignation was reluctantly accepted by the trustees of Bowdoin College.

In all colleges interruptions of labor occur by reason of sickness or death among its members, and I recall a time when the illness of Dr. Sager caused an interruption of his work, and Dr. Palmer, true to himself and the institution he has served, came to the rescue, and by extra lectures, cheerfully undertaken, did much to supplement the labor interrupted, and to insure satisfaction in that important department of instruction, for which his duties during the first six years proved an admirable preparation; and I may appropriately say the University has been singularly fortunate in having a man, so fitted by health, varied experience, zeal for students' welfare, and love of work, that could so readily and so successfully take up the labor so required by the failure of others.

The importance of extending our facilities for clinical instruction was fully appreciated by Dr. Palmer, and the enterprise received his cordial support and co-operation; and although he understood that his individual labor might be doubled thereby, his zeal in this direction received no chill from the full realization of this fact, and the fidelity of his service there is fully attested by those who sometimes found the hours prolonged, while for him, they were quite generally too short. And surely no man has ever labored more earnestly than he to make certain the qualifications of those whom we have educated and sent forth bearing the honors and endorsement of the University. I know from repeated conversation with him the high value he placed upon bringing student and patient face to face, and with what delight he improved every opportunity to make sure that the student had more than a slight acquaintance with every important disease.

Indeed, justice to his efforts in this direction calls for the statement that in 1858 Dr. Palmer went to Detroit, after the session closed here, and for some months taught a class of students from the University, at Saint Mary's Hospital, in the hope that by some permanent arrangement there adequate provision might be made to give that needed instruction to all graduates after the close of lectures here. The desire was, not to supersede instruction here, but to supplement it by a special post-graduate training in the directly practical branches. The embarrassments in the way of success there could not be overcome, and the effort was not resumed another year. In 1859 Dr. Palmer spent several months in Europe in medical observation and improvement, the results of which he highly prized, and by which great numbers have profited.

One who recalls the curriculum in most medical colleges thirty or forty years ago, and contrasts it with our present long course, will at once appreciate the urgent reasons for extending our term from six to nine months. The University took the lead in college sessions of long terms by making our course six months at its organization in 1850, and, having added to the original requirements for students study in the anatomical laboratory and in the chemical, and at a later period in the histological, none of which were originally demanded, the urgency of an extension of the term became more manifest; and not without some apprehension as to the result, it was finally decided in 1878, that the session should be extended to the full nine months now required in all departments of the University.

Although this rendered necessary, on the part of Dr. Pal. mer, the surrender of remunerative labor elsewhere, he not only cheerfully acquisced, but was foremost in urging the extension, and ever rejoiced at the opportunity thus secured, to give fuller instruction in some subjects than heretofore, or to take up some new phase of our ever-widening science, and only those who know his zeal to have this department fully in the front rank in everything, are aware how fully he was devoted to the work of promoting its interests, and how near the truth was the playful remark sometimes made, that he was wedded to the University. His love of this service originally induced him to surrender his prospects for professional success in Chicago and identify himself with this, then young, institution.

As I am the only remaining member of the old Faculty on duty, and as we are commemorating the services of one so long a member of the same, it seems eminently appropriate to recall in this connection, by a brief notice, the names and services of the men who, with him, taught in the University and contributed by a like fidelity of service and earnest work to the prosperity and reputation of the Medical College, and I name them mainly in the order in which their life work was completed. They were true and earnest men, of whom it is a pleasure to speak in words of commendation, and where more properly than as associated with the man we honor and mourn to-day.

[TO BE CONTINUED).

TRANSLATIONS.

FRENCH LITERATURE.

SELECT EXCERPTA.
TRANSLATED BY C. J. MINER, ANN ARBOR, MICHIGAN.

GRAFTS OF CHICKEN-SKIN.

Animal grafts, long since studied by Czerny, of Vienna, Coze, of Strasburg, and Follet and Houzé were very generally abandoned, but to-day a reaction in their favor has taken place, and Petersen, Baratoux, Bonsquet-Laborderie, have shown the possibility of repairing the loss of considerable substance by the transplantation of the skin of guinea pigs. Assaky, Fargin, Monod, and Peyrot, have obtained good results also in the grafts of tendons on animals of different species.

We have just obtained excellent results from grafts of the skin of fowls, and we think the subject worth the attention of the physiologist and surgeon.

Wiesmann has twice transplanted the skin of pigeons to pigeons with success, and three times the skin of chickens to chickens with two successes and one failure. Diffembach says that he has practiced with good results a large number of grafts on birds. G. Martin reports in his thesis experiments in the transplantation of the skin of ducks and pigeons to animals of the same species. In cases, of open wounds we have obtained rapid union by the aid of grafts of the skin of fowls. We had especially good results in the case of a deep burn on a child two years of age. The entire scalp had been burned eight months before, but the grafting could not be done at that time because of the profuse suppuration which enfeebled the patient and threatened his life. Grafts of the skin of guinea pigs, not giving rapid results, we used grafts of the skin of fowls and in two months obtained a regeneration of skin seven centimeters by eight. In other cases we have obtained similar results.

We think that the skin of fowls, and especially of chickens, is to be recommended; it is supple, of fine texture and vascular, and it stretches well over the surfaces, and adheres without reabsorbing giving important islands of epidermis which develope and spread, forming new tissue, soft and quite different from ordinary cicatricial tissue. The manual of operation which we employ in our grafts is very simple. The skin should be raised under the wing of young chickens and should have no cellular tissue attached, and no fat; the shreds should be onehalf to one centimeter square; sutures are useless, the skin adhering very easily. The wound and the dressing should be rigorously aseptic. Iodoform gauze, and light cotton compresses may be used. CALOMEL AS A MEANS OF PREVENTING SMALL-POX PITS.

Dr. Drzewiecki, physician at the Hospital of Saint-Esprit, Warsaw, after having tried every known means of preventing the pits of small-pox, finally succeeded by means of calomel. He reports good results in a large number of cases at a recent opidemic in Warsaw. The calomel, spread on the face in powder form did not, it is true, prevent the development of the papules and vesicles, but after they have formed it aids their drying and thus prevents the forming of scars. It is not known whether the calomel acts as calomel, as sublimate, or as metallic mercury, for it is decomposed into the last two bodies under the influence of light. He has employed the calomel pure and mixed with starch, twenty to thirty parts to one hundred, but does not say with which form he obtained the best results.

IODOFORM INTOXICATION.

M. Duret divides iodoform intoxication into three clases: (1) The eruptive form; (2) the cerebral or delirious form; (3) the syncopal or lypothermic form. The first is the most frequent. It is characterized by a reddish eruption manifesting itself on various parts of the body at a distance from the point of application. The delirious form is characterized by epileptiform attacks and by insomnia accompanied by delirium. The syncopal form is most grave. The absorption of iodoform is followed by a fall of temperature.

Temperature falls below 36° centigrade and has been seen to fall 34.16° centigrade. In the different cases observed by M. Duret, the attack ceased with the suppression of iodoform.L'Union Medicale.

PULMONARY ANTISEPSIS IN THE TREATMENT OF DIS

EASES OF THE RESPIRATORY PASSAGES, AND ESPECIALLY IN PULMONARY TUBERCULOSIS.

The recent discoveries in bacteriology have turned therapeutics into new paths. Medication based on the chance of empiricism has given place to rational therapeutics. To-day we know without doubt that phthisis is contagious and inocuable, and is due to a parasite, introduced into the organism. It is then natural to base the treatment of this disease on the new ideas given us by experimentation and microscopical examination.

Since tuberculosis is the result of the harmful action of a microbe on the tissues, it is logical to seek a substance or a series of substances capable of antagonizing this action. Some authors seek to attack and destroy the bacillus; others wish to impregnate the organism with agents which will render it capable of resisting the microbe. Whichever of these theories one adopts he must employ the same medicines from the series of antiseptics, aromatics and balsams. This is the basis of the antiseptic treatment of pulmonary phthisis and many other affections of

« PreviousContinue »