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fully selected, have got well at just about the time when those treated too late
too late or unhomeopathically were sickest, cannot help but feel that the similimum can not only steer the patient's bark of life clear of rocks and shoals until typhoid has run its course, but may and does stop it short in not a few cases, if administered early. Of course, when the disease has been fully developed, when histological changes have occurred in the glands of Peyer, there is nothing to abort-only a fully developed case to treat, and a certain time must elapse before the physiological processes of resolution and absorption can be compieted. We do not think much of a priori reasoning in medical matters, but, granted the truth of the law of similars, we cannot see how any other position can be taken. If the indicated remedy (given a sufficient sum of vitality in the patient) is powerless to bring about the cancellation of one set of symptoms, what right have we, logically, to assert that it will cancel other, later and deeper symptoms in the same case-in other words, what right have we to assert that Homeopathic remedies will cure typhoid in any stage--and if not typhoid, what becomes of the universality of the law of cure?
There is power in the unaided vital force to occasionally abort the typhoid process, since the "abortive” is one of the recognized types of eriteric fever. Can any one who seriously believes in Homeopathy doubt the power of the similimum to arouse the vital reaction that sometimes occurs without remedies? there's the rub!” How do you know, says Dr. A., that the cases which you believe were aborted by the remedies selected were not of the abortive type? Well, we do not know, to be sure, but,
if the remedy did not do the work, it is wonderful, very, what a large percentage of abortive cases fall into the hands of those who administer the similar remedy! "One swallow does not make a summer," but whole flocks of them indicate that summer is somewhere near.
THE "HOMEOPATHICIANS." The story runs (we fear to spoil it in the re-telling!) that a certain old Scotch woman was so straight-lacedly orthodox in her religious views and so censorious of the actions of others that she had made herself a neighborhood nuisance. Once, one of her unwilling hearers ventured the remark: “Why, Aunt Jeanie, you seem to think that nobody but you and the minister will get to heaven!” To this, the “unco guid” old lady, quite unconscious of the implied criticism of her criticisms, made reply in all earnestness: “Whyles I hae my doots aboot the meneester!" Homeopathy is blessed with more than one of these old ladies. Just now some of them have concluded that the American Institute of Homeopathy and the International Hahnemannium Association and, a fortiori, the divers State and local Homeopathic societies, have all gone to the bad, in fact are medical Sodoms and Gomorrhas, from which they must flee for their Homeopathic lives.
These old ladies have formed the "Society of Homeopathicians." It starts wut with eighteen members and its total possible membership is fifty, of whom not more than five can be elected annually. The society's declaration of principles starts out with two quotaticns, the first of which reads as follows: "I have no use for Homeopathy except the name.”—Pretender. Of course, no such expression has ever been used by anyone. "Pretenders is a mere straw man, whom the old ladies have put up to scare themselves with and furnish some excuse for deserting the International Hahnemannian, of which they are, or were, all members. The true reason of their new departure is to be found in the statement that “At the meeting held at Narragansett Pier June 21st, 1892, the I. H. A. violated its Declaration of Principles, Constitution and By-Laws, by voting to indefinitely postpone a report of the Board of Censors before it was submitted, in order to shield a member in error. This repudiation of its principles destroyed the life of pure Homeopathy as represented by the I. H. A., etc.” In other words, because the I. H. A. refused to spend its time in wrangling over questions of discipline, rather than in discussions of Homeopathic medicine, it has gone after strange flesh and, together with the American Institute, must be abandoned! The "unco guid" old women have taken their time to do it—they have consuined considerably over two years in picking up their traps and getting ready to "get!" It is all very comical, and yet it is all very sad! Had the members of the new society any scientific purpose, we should wish them God-speed. It numbers among its members men of more than average ability, men who will be missed from the councils of their former association; but the principle of secession, upon which they are acting, will lead them to secede from each other from time to time until each one will at last remain, in his own estimation, a curiosity like the dodo, the last remaining Homeopath.
What slight tenure upon life must be that of "pure Homeopathy," if it can be destroyed by the failure of any man or body of men to discipline some one for using two remedies instead of one!
THE BEAR, HIS FRIEND AND THE FLY. You all know the fable: how Bruin crushed the skull of his sleeping friend with the stone that was meant for the fly that was tickling the sleeper's nose. The November issue of the "Medical Advance” has an article in which Fisher figures as the sleeper and another fellow as the bear. Fisher, it seems, in the course of a discussion, had said: “When the indicated remedy fails it is not indicated,” and an admirer of his, divorcing the remark from its context, makes it the occasion of much encomium of Fisher and the subject of an article in which he develops the idea thought to have been conveyed by the object of his admiration. The fact is that the remark quoted, unqualified, is arrant nonsense, as can be demonstrated in very few words. No Homeopathist believes (chemical antidotes aside) that drugs in any potency cure. The curative action is (so we all believe) the reaction of the vital force. Then, it follows, necessarily, that, in order for the indicated remedy to "cure," there must be a sufficnt amount of vital force to react thereto. What that sufficient amount is in any case, it is impossible to tell in advance, but it must be there or no cure can be effected by and remedy. Of course, Fisher believes that and more, for he is a disciple of Pratt, who claims, in substance, that irritation of the great sympathetic by reflex action of terminal nerves at the orifices may so disturb the natural reaction of the vital force against disease and the remedies homeopathic thereto as to inhibit the action of the latter. Of course, had he known how his off-hand remark would be used as a text down in South Carolina, Fisher would have surrounded it with all the necessary qualifications. Our purpose, in this brief talk, is not so much to defend a brother editor against a well-meaning bear, as to protest once more against the idea that "the indicated remedy” is an omnipotent something, a species of drug Almighty, that can not only use but create life-force. We need not go so far as Pratt and his disciples, Fisher included, to arrive at the couclusion that "the indicated remedy” (indicated, that is, symptomatologically) has its limitations of action, and the sooner we get our minds in the clear on the subject the sooner we shall cease to produce nonsense and label it "wisdom."
Points and Pointers.
It is said that washing the hands with linseed meal and water will remove the odor of iodoform......I would rather put my faith in a man who studies his cases than in one who injects drugs into rats and then jumps at the conclusion that the results he obtains are identical with those produced by the same drug in man. -Dr. Wm. F. Waugh (Regular)......Dr. Roux claims that serum therapy, at the Paris Hospital des Enfants Malades has reduced the mortality of diphtheria from 51 to 24 per centum...... Pus, originating outside of the tubes and ovaries, in the non-puerperal state, is a very rare condition. Speaking generally, pelvic abscesses are pus-tubes.—Dr. Wm. W. Potter ...... Little, localized powers, and little narrow streaks of specialized knowledge, are things men are very apt to be conceited about.-0. W. Holmes.
• . . According to Murchison, the mortality from typhus in cases under 10 years of age was 3.27 per cent., the mortality after 50 years, 57.03 per cent...... Sleeping with hands over the head indicates generally puls. or nux vom. Puls oftenest for women, in whom the symptom often indicates a tendency to falling of the womb. Nux more generally for men.—Dr. Frank Kraft...... Enlarged pupils, bell.; contracted, opium; one enlarged, the other contracted, gels.... It is valuable to know that sometimes the sudden hoarseness of singers and public speakers from over-use of the voice is cured by arum tri. The voice is almost entirely gone; he cannot make a clear sound. Give a dose of arum tri. twenty or thirty minutes before he must go on with his speech, and he will go ahead almost as if nothing had happened.-Dr. J. T. Kent.
A salt shirt, prepared by immersing the shirt in a saturated solution of common salt, drying it thoroughly and having it worn next to the skin on retiring for the night, is the best remedy I have ever tried for night-sweats. I have succeeded in this when I had failed with all other remedies.—Dr. R. E. Nelson ...... The man who is going to succeed in the practice of medicine is the man who has a few definite ideas in his mind as a guide for acquiring the necessary bits of special knowledge as he goes along. --Dr. T. F. Allen......Dr. Edward Blake (London) reports a case of glycosuria produced by the injection of one-fiftieth grain of arsenic three times a day for two years. Suspension of the drug for one week, the glyclosuria disappeared...... Text-books tell us that when the pupils are irregular, one contracted and one dilated, severe cerebral disturbances are present. I cannot subscribe to this teaching, as in all the cases of neurasthenia with the vasomotor disturbances, that I have thus far observed, the pupils have been irregular; and they are so because the sympathetic nerve is implicated with the others.-Dr. Wm. C. Krauss...... Prof. H. A. Hare is of the opinion that “some cases of pneumonia can be aborted, if seen early enough.” He forgot to add, by a homeopath...... The true physician, the family physician especially, is as much physician to the mind as to the body ...... Blondes are more susceptible to the effects of quinine than brunettes. This is particularly true of the effects upon the skin (scarlatinoid dermamatosis, etc.). ....Milk, eggs, starches, fruits and green vegetables, in a word, foods that are digested in the intestines, should be used exclusively in cases of ulcer of the stomach...... As seen in typhoid, the phos. ac. patient becomes delirious while yet muscularly strong. The trouble originates in the brain, and the muscular weakness follows, apparently as the result of the congestion. The muriatic acid patient, on the contrary, has first muscular weakness, probably from a septic condition of the blood, and, as that progresses, involvement of the brain and delirium...... Painfulness of the anterior part of the scalp would suggest that the cause must be somewhere in the distribution of the fifth nerve; while painfulness of the posterior part of the scalp is as certainly connected with lesion of the occipital nerves, and will generally be found to depend on disease of, or in the neighborhood of, the first or second cervical vertebræ.-Dr. A. B. Shaw.
COCAINE TO SUPPRESS THE SECRETION OF MILK. Joire ("Le Bulletin Medical,” No. 36, 1894) makes the statement that the lacteal secretion may be easily suppressed, in those cases where it is desirable, by the local application of 5 per cent solution of cocaine in equal parts of glycerine and water. The application should be made by means of a camel's hair brush. Suppression of the secretion will follow in two to six days. There have been no untoward results observed.—University Medical Magazine.
SOME UNNECESSARY GYNAECOLOGICAL OPERATIONS.
By J. Martine Kershaw, M. D., St. Louis, Mo. I have nothing to say against, and everything to say in favor of a surgical operation upon or about the female genitalia, if the case calls for an operation, and if every other proper means has been employed, and failed to bring the desired relief. Many cases of internal disease are upon the outside and far removed from the seat of the lesion. Grief, worry, jealousy, disappointment, matrimonial infelicity, financial embarrassment, constant standing, excessive lactation, constipation, improper dressing and eating-any one or several of these may cause depression of spirits, insomnia, backache, and bearing down pains; but to the gynaecologist who only looks on the inside, a slight uterine difficulty will account for every mental and physical ailment of the patient. There are gynaecologists who only look on the inside, they never look anywhere else, and they do not intend to do so. When a woman presents herself they generally find something, large or small, which calls for the knife. The necessities of the case or the possible outcome of the operation, are of small importance to the man who sees only one side of the question. No needless operation should be performed, nor should human life be sacrificed because a doctor, impatient of delay, wishes to make a short cut to fame and reputation.
A young woman, beautiful and rich, suffered from dysmenorrhoea. A physician persuaded her to have her ovaries removed. The operation was performed, peritonitis followed, and she died a dreadful death. The slight trouble she experienced every month could have been relieved by other means. This, I say, was an unnecessary operation. As I have just said, this woman was young, beautiful and rich. She consented to have the operation of ovariotomy performed, because she was led to believe it was a simple procedure and that it would free her from pain, and enhance her beauty. The doctor failed to tell her that a great many patients after ovariotomy take on excessive fat and that coarse hairs have grown on the chins in some reported cases, and in one quite a beard developed.
Ilshausen quotes * Kleinwaechter as saying: The obstinacy of the disease (dysmenorrhoea) and the severity of the symptoms may justify castration in exceptional cases, but the normal condition of the patient in the intermenstrual period will militate seriously against such an operation.
But in all such conditions castration will only be justifiable in exceptional cases after years of suffering, and when the patient is no longer young.
A young married woman, nervous, jealous of her husband and very unhappy, had the Alexander-Adam operation performed at the instance of a gynaecologist who only looked on the inside.
* Encyclopedia of Obstetrics and Gynaecology.