Another letter to a young physician: to which are appended some other medical papers

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Ticknor and Fields, 1861 - Medical - 179 pages
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Page 159 - No event was more desired by Washington, but he did not live to participate in the joy with which the intelligence was received by his countrymen. Since his retirement from the Presidency, his health had been remarkably good ; and, although age had not come without its infirmities, yet he was able to endure fatigue and make exertions of body and mind with scarcely less ease and activity, than he had done in the prime of his strength.
Page 160 - Deer. 12th. the General rode out to his farms about ten o'clock, and did not return home till past three. Soon after he went out the weather became very bad, rain, hail, and snow falling alternately with a cold wind.
Page 169 - ... last moment of life. We are prepared now to consider the treatment proper in acute laryngitis, in connection with that adopted in the case under consideration. It has been thought by many persons, medical and non-medical, that General Washington was not treated judiciously; and some, perhaps, believe that by a different treatment his life might have been preserved. Sixty years have passed since his decease, and the disease, which was fatal to him, is understood now much more perfectly than it...
Page 134 - purged abundantly, was blistered freely, was kept in the dark, and on the lowest diet; also, the vessels of the conjunctiva were divided twice. It is not for the purpose of commenting upon this treatment that we have quoted the author's exposition of it. Our creed differs from his, and it could not be expected that we should harmonize with him in measures which were, without doubt, conscientiously employed by him.
Page 176 - When Dr. Craik reached him some hours afterwards, he prescribed a new venesection. He was right ; it is in such circumstances that the anceps remedium is justifiable. What would medical critics, what would posterity have said, if this good doctor, when such a patient was in his hands, in imminent danger from an affection which was manifestly due to inflammation, had folded his arms, and said, " There is no possibility of giving relief; but you may let him inhale the vapor from some herb tea " ? Although...
Page 15 - ... years after this Dr. Holyoke, who had then been in practice for half a century, took a student just beginning his medical education with him, — young James Jackson, — into the room where he kept his medicines. Pointing to the drawers and bottles ranged around the room, he said to the young man : " I seem to have here a great number and variety of medicines ; but I may name four which are of more importance than all the rest put together; namely, Mercury, Antimony, Opium, and Peruvian Bark.
Page 170 - ... believe that by a different treatment his life might have been preserved. Sixty years have passed since his decease, and the disease, which was fatal to him, is understood now much more perfectly than it was in 1799. To what result have we arrived ? Has any treatment proved to be more successful than that adopted in his case? He was bled, he was blistered, and calomel and antimony were administered internally. Whether these remedies were employed early enough, and whether to too great an extent,...
Page 177 - ... of this laryngitis. Colonel Lear says that calomel and antimony were given to General Washington, but he does not say in what doses, nor whether more than once. There is not any reason to believe that they were given in large doses ; though I think Dr. Craik and his coadjutors have been reproached on this score. In 1799 the use of mercurials in inflammatory diseases was very rare, I believe, in Great Britain, though it was very common in this country. At the present day the reverse is true. At...
Page 176 - ... physician. We must give her the credit of exercising a wise caution. Of course she did not understand the nature of the disease ; she did not suspect how rapidly it was pressing forward to a fatal termination. Even the delay of the three or four hours which had already passed away since he waked her up in the night, was a most serious loss. When Dr. Craik reached him some hours afterwards, he prescribed a new venesection. He was right ; it is in such circumstances that the anceps remcdium is...
Page 174 - ... change into the severe disease, called acute laryngitis, is among the most rare occurrences. It does not take place in one case out of a million. But if it happened in one case in a hundred, it would not be justifiable to resort to a severe treatment in each one of a hundred cases, in order to save one of them from the fatal change. There is no doubt that every discreet man would choose to incur the slight hazard of the severe disease, rather than to resort to a copious bleeding every time he...

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