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ANTISEPTICS IN OINTMENT.-(Chemist and Druggist, November, 1895). Professor Koch, having found that carbolic oil possesses no antiseptic properties, the question of value of such agents when combined with ointment bases becomes of importance. Dr. E. Breslauer has undertaken to solve this problem by a series of very interesting and exact experiments, combining the various antiseptics, as carbolic acid, resorcin, corrosive sublimate, silver nitrate, boric and salicylic acids with various ointment bases and testing the bactericidal properties of the mixture. He found in those bases which contain no water, as petrolatum, simple ointments, etc., very little or no antiseptic action is found except with the mercury salts; while with hydrouslanoline and cold cream, which contain a considerable proportion of water, a decided action was manifested. The failure of the action with anhydrous bases is not attributed to loss or alteration of the active constituents but to the non-miscibility of oil and fats with the discharges from wounds and other secretions containing disease germs. Glycerine ointments act somewhat better, but are still inferior to bases containing water in considerable proportion, as cold cream. The cream seems to bring about that close contact between the bacteria and the antiseptic agent which results in the destruction of the former.
BALLOWITZ (Virchow's Archiv., Aug. 5th, 1895) has gathered all available recorded cases of congenital absence of one kidney. They number two hundred and thirteen to the exclusion of cases of fused kidney and of partial atrophy of one kidney. Relative to sex this imperfection occurs nearly twice as often in males as in females, a circumstance attributable in a measure doubtless to the greater frequency of necropsies on the former; relative to age, three were twenty-three in foeti, most of which had some other malformation, especially imperforate anus; the others were about evenly distributed up to seventy years of age. All cases considered, this deficiency is more often on the left than on the right side and though the left kidney is more generally lacking in males than the right, in females the defect is equally common to both sides. In form and relation, the solitary kidney was most
invariably normal, but much enlarged, apparently owing to hyperplasia rather than hypertrophy. In many cases there were attend. ant deformities of the procreative organs, most constant on the side of the renal defect, the conducting channels being modified more than the glandular portions,
ERUPTION FOLLOWING THE EXTERNAL APPLICATION OF IODINE LINIMENT (B.P.)--Dr. D. R. Robie (Lancet, September 28th) writes concerning a case that came under his notice in Coldstream Cottage Hospital. Patient complained of headache, lassitude, pain in the back. An examination revealed the fact that pneumonia and advanced renal disease were present. Temperature rather constant between 98.4 and 100.8. Urine highly colored with bile and thickly charged with albumin. Usual treatment in such cases was given with favorable results. In connection with this the back was painted with dilute iodine liniment (B. P.). Application of liniment was continued for four days, morning and evening: On the fifth day the patient's face became covered by a papular vesicular eruption. Pustules all over the face were discrete-confluent forming large encrusted sores with swelling of eyelids, lips, nose, and ears; copious discharge from the nostrils accompanied this. At the same time a distinctly different eruption appeared on the hands. The eruption on these members was purely papular and extended to wrist and forearm. The indications were of “Iodide Eruption." Eruption disappeared on the face at the end of four days—healthy skin appearing. The papules on the hands continued prominent. In a week uræmic poisoning developed and patient quickly succumbed. The case is worthy of notice as the only case on record where the external application of Iodine Liniment produced the characteristic iodine eruption, although cases resulting from internal treatment are common. Still more peculiar is the fact that the back, upon which the liniment was applied, remained normal in appearance.
How TO FIND OUT IF A CASE OF GONORRHEA IS ACTUALLY CURED.-(La Semaine Medicale, No. 49, 1894). Kraft, of Utrecht, Holland, has found a very efficacious method of determining whether in a given case an actual cure of gonorrhæa has been obtained. It is well known that the absence of discharge and gleet is not proof sufficient that the disease is not present. Dr. Kraft has the patient drink a quart and a half of beer, while a two per cent. solution of sublimate is injected into his urethra. No reaction follows if the patient is cured. But if not
a discharge will be set up within at least forty-eight hours. This method is recommended as medico-legally accurate.
INFLUENCE OF CASTRATION METABOLISM.—Curatulo and Tarulli (Centralblatt für Gynäkologie, No. 21, 1895) make the following deductions after a series of experiments on animals. The ovaries secrete a fluid, characteristic, from constituents derived from the blood, chemical organization yet unascertained, which has the power of oxidizing phosphorous, compounds or those which supply the calcium salts of the bones, so that on cutting off its source-i. c., performing oöphorectomy, there follows a greater deposition of calcium and magnesium phosphates in the bones, a fact which may prove of great value in the treatment of osteomalacia. Further, the greater deposition of fat, following the normal and artificial climacteric it is possible to account for by the decreased oxidation of fat through the lack of this same secretion.
OXYGEN AS A TREATMENT FOR DIABETES.—Ascoli (Il Policlinico, VI., 14, 1895) reports the case of a man sixty years old who had suffered from diabetes for two years. The ordinary methods of treatment were tried without any particular success. toms becoming more acute, inhalations of oxygen were tried. This mode of treatment was practiced from March 7th to June 16th, with the exception of one week in May. On an average one hundred and eighty litres of oxygen were inhaled daily. After a few days the urine began to slowly diminish in quantity. It also lost its high specific gravity, and the sugar sank to one per cent. At the end of April the sugar disappeared entirely. In the early part of June no sugar was found even after a meal rich in carbohydrates. The body weight increased two thousand five hundred grams under treatment. The usual dietetic restrictions were observed.
PHYTOLACCA DECANDRA FOR EPITHELIOMA.-By E. G. Goodwin, M.D. (North Carolina Medical Journal). The green juice of Phytolacca Decandra expressed from the leaves is recommended by the author as a specific for epithelioma. “It has a selective action," he says, "for the morbid tissue; follows out all the irregularities of the epithelioma; causes its liquefaction and removal, and then acts as a cicatrizant of the open sore.” Under this treatment Dr. Goodman has seen large epitheliomatous swellings disappear in a few weeks, with but a faint scar left to attest its presence. The remedy causes severe pain, but may be used fearlessly.
PREVENTION OF CHOLERA.-Dr. Elmer Lee in his paper before the American Medical Association in Baltimore May 7-10, on the Prevention of Cholera, practically says that drinking pure water will afford immunity in a time of epidemic. He cites the case of Altoona's escape from the cholera in the late epidemic at Hamburg. During the prevalence of the epidemic in Hamburg, Altoona, a division of the city, was supplied from a different system of waterworks from that of Hamburg, and while cholera raged in Hamburg to the extent of 21,000 cases in five weeks, there were no cases of cholera in Altoona.
TEST FOR TUBERCLE Bacilli.—(American Medico-Surgical Bulletin, Nov. 1, 1895). In testing for tubercle bacilli, Benyzek recommends that after the sputum has become dry, to treat it with a solution containing alcoholic sol. fuchsin four parts, carbolic acid five parts, and water forty-five parts. Warm gently until vapor is given off, then wash with water and stain with methylene blue to which ten per cent. solution of H, SO, has been added. It has been found by this treatment that the bacilli are stained dark-red, while the rest of the sputum is of a light blue color. This process inay be used with a great deal of certainty as no other bacteria are stained by it.
THE ANTIDOTE FOR CARBOLIC Acid Poisoning.–Dr. E. Carle. ton (New York Medical Times, November, 1895) reports that, while experimenting with pure carbolic acid, he accidentally spilt about two ounces on his hand. He immediately put his hand under a stream of cold water, but it became white and numb. He thought that there would be no escape from the usual result-desquamation and slow recovery of sense of touch. The odor was persistent and in the belief that it might be changed thereby he applied vinegar, and while bathing the injured part he noticed that its former function and color had returned. In five minutes nothing remained but the modified odor. Clinical verifications have been obtained, and Dr. C. S. Kinney gives evidence to the antidotal action of vinegar when the mucous membrane is affected.
USE OF SILVER FOIL IN SURGERY.—As announced in the Medieal Times, Dr. Welch, the bacteriologist for Johns Hopkins Hospital, has demonstrated that germs will not grow in the immediate vicinity of silver. His discovery is made use of in the dressing of aseptic surgical wounds, by placing silver foil immediately in contact with the closed incision, in sheets about four inches square. The other aseptic dressings are then applied,
System of Surgery. Edited by Frederic S. Dennis, M.D., Professor of the Principles and Practice of Surgery, Bellevue Hospital Medical College, etc., assisted by John S. Billings, M.D., U. S. A., LL.D. Edinburgh and Harvard, etc., Deputy Surgeon General, U. S. A. Philadelphia: Lea Brothers & Co., 1895. Four Volumes.
Volumes I. and II. of this work are now complete. It is a truly American work of the highest value to the surgeon, and does credit to American methods and skill, the opening historical sketch, by J. S. Billings, especially pointing out the large part which the surgeons on this side of the Atlantic have had to do in building up the science as it is now universally practiced. Most of the articles are exhaustive in character, and furnish to the surgeon the details of each subject treated; the work is, therefore, better adapted for the practitioner than for the student; but we have to note a few of the important features of the work. In accordance with the course generally pursued, each author, by affixing his name to his own contribution, becomes its direct sponsor. Following the historical sketch by Surgeon-General J. S. Billings are the articles on Surgical Pathology, by W. T. Councilman, and upon Bacteriology, by Wm. H. Welch, which are probably the best of the kind now extant, and furnish all that is known in these branches that is of practical use to the surgeon. Septicæmia, Pyemia and Poisoned Wounds, by W. H. Carmalt, should be especially noted for his discussion of the treatment of these diseases. The remaining articles are: Symptoms, Diagnosis and Treatment of Inflammation, Abscess, Ulcer and Gangrene, by Charles B. Nancrede, A.M., M.D.; Traumatic Fever, Erysipelas and Tetanus, by J. C. Warren, M.D. ; Rabies, Hydrophobia, Lyssa, by H. M. Biggs, M.D.; Gunshot Wounds, by P. S. Connor, M.D. ; Fractures and Dislocations, by Fred S. Dennis, M.D.; Anästhesia, by H. C. Wood, M.D. ; The Technique of Antiseptic and Aseptic Surgery, by A. G. Gerster, M.D., and Operative Surgery, by Stephen Smith, M.D. These are all authoritative treatises in their various departments. That portion upon Fractures and Dislocations, by the editor of the System,