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last few years.
This volume is devoted to the consideration of the diseases of cat. tle, which have only begun to excite interest in our country within the
In the summer of 1868 an affection became general among the cattle brought to Cairo, Illinois, from Texas, and has been called, from its resemblance to a disease of the old Spanish cattle on the Gulf coast, "Spanish fever.” It is more generally known by the name “Texas Cattle Disease. Professor Gamgee, of London, was requested by the Commissioner of Agriculture, Horace Capron, Esq., to make a full investigation of the complaint, and this work consists chiefly of his reports on the subject. The disease, according to Prof. Gamgee, is pleuro-pneumonia, and is propagated alone by contagion. The popular term murrain was applied, in times past, to all the fatal affections of cattle. This has been sometimes called "pulmonary murrain." It has been long known to veterinary surgeons, and much within the last century has been written concerning it in France, and especially in Germany. It has been eminently fatal in England and Ireland in the last twenty-seven years-two millions pounds sterling having been lost in cattle in those countries from the disorder during that period. From England and Holland the malady has been propagated far and wide. In 1843 it is said to have been imported into Brooklyn by a cow from Germany, and the disease is believed to have existed in the neighborhood ever since. From Holland the infection was imported into Massachusetts in 1859. Four cows arrived in a diseased state, of which three died in a short time, and the disease spread rapidly among the cattle on the farm of the importer. That the pleuropneumonia of cattle is propagated by contagion Prof. G. entertains no doubt; and to ignore the fact, he contends, will be to diffuse the fatal malady all over the whole country. Sick cows are sold to the butchers; often put into droves of other cattle, to which they impart the contagion, and in this way it is carried to all the marts where beef is sold, to become again centers of contagion.
Of the signs or symptoms of this disease, the first that elicits attention is a cough, and this Prof. Gamgee has found always attended by fever. In a herd of cattle he has frequently detected individuals apparently in perfect health, with a temperature of one hundred and four or one hundred and five degrees Fahr., and never in such a case did he fail to discover friction sounds and loud respiratory murmurs, the disease having been already set up in the lungs. The animal affected first attracts attention by the appearance of its coat, which is
dull and staring; its appetite soon fails, its breathing becomes quick, and it stands motionless with protruding head and arched back, which sufficiently indicate grave disease. Auscultation and percussion reveal a harsh rhoncus, with solidification of one or both lungs. Death, when it occurs, takes place from prostration, suffocation, purulent fever or hectic. The incubation stage of the disease may last eighty days, and usually averages from twenty-five to forty; the acute stage varies from seven to twenty-one days. The mortality varies from one to ninety per cent. of the animals affected. Even in mild outbreaks the mortality is seldom below twenty-five per cent. In England the usual cattle mortality has been more than double by the lung plague, and for many years, of the cattle that have died, fifty per cent. have fallen victims to this fever.
In regard to the contagiousness of the cattle plague, Professor G. remarks:
“The history of pleuro-pneumonia, coupled with the observations made on the supposed casual agencies capable of inducing the disease, are almost sufficient to establish the purely contagious nature of the disease; but there are several important proofs that deserve mention.
“It is seen in all countries where the lung plague appears, that it spreads in proportion to the opportunities of contagion. It is worst in large cities where cow-feeders have to make frequent purchases. It is apt to diminish in severity so long as the cows are confined to stables in the winter, and different herds have no chance of approach.
"The high-prized herds of England, which have been carefully isolated by their proprietors, have always remained free from the disease.”
All the facts adduced on this head certainly make out a strong case in favor of the nature of the plague asserted in the following paragraphs:
“The lung plague is a malignant fever, never generated de noro, so far as reliable information has yet reached, dependent on the introduction of a virus or a contagion into the system of a healthy animal. This principle produces a local change if inserted into any part provided with a connective or fatty tissue, in which it most readily penetrates. The same local change is produced by its contact with the delicate mucous surface of the bronchial tubes.
“ Viewed in this light, we have to classify bovine pleuro-pneumonia with the contagious fevers, and we must recognize that it is peculiar and different from the other known diseases of man or nimals. The ordinary pheno na of inflammations are but superadded conditions, and an animal may have the disease without indicating their presence.”
The medical treatment of this disease has not been satisfactory, and as to the treatment in general use, Prof. G. remarks that it is worseuseless. Bleeding was at one time extensively practiced, especially in England, but it is now almost entirely abandoned. The remedy to which Prof. G. attaches most importance, is iron in the form of the sisquichloride or sulphate, which he gives with the view of smothering the exudation into the lungs. A drachm mixed with coriander seed in bran, is freely eaten, and has, he thinks, often arrested the distemper. But it is evident from all that has been written on the subject, that a great deal is not to be expected from medical treatment in this complaint when once firmly established, and hence the greater importance of prophylatic measures by which it may be prevented from spreading. These consist in separating the healthy part of the herd at once from the diseased animals, and in inoculating those which have been exposed to the infection. Our author is fully persuaded of the efficacy of inoculation in securing at least a temporary immunity from the disease. He is not sure that a permanent security is given by the operation. At the same time that this exemption is secured, there is no danger of developing the plague by inoculation. The tip of the tail is the point most favorably chosen for inserting the virus, which is the fluid obtained from the lungs of an animal in the first stages of the disorder.
If the conclusions at which veterinarians have arrived in regard to the contagiousness of this disorder, and the practicability of avoiding it by inoculating healthy animals, should be sustained by future observation, the terrors of this plague will be substantially annihilated.
From this interesting report of Prof. Gamgee, it would appear that diseased cattle in great numbers had been slaughtered and sold by butchers in all countries where the lung-plague has prevailed, and it is a note-worthy fact that in no instance does disease in man seem to have originated from the use of such flesh.
Splenic fever is the subject of an elaborate report by Prof. Gamgee. The disease is not contagious. It is hardly amenable to treatment. Quarantine is the measure for preventing its dissemination.
These reports are highly interesting to agriculturalists engaged in raising cattle, and they are also instructive to the physician. We hope the investigations will be continued, and that important results will follow the efforts of government in this direction.
THE SCIENCE AND ART OF SURGERY: BEING A TREATISE
ON SURGICAL INJURIES, DISEASES AND OPERATIONS.
BY JOIN ERIC ERICKSEN, Senior Surgeon to University College Hospital, and Holmes Professor of Clinical Surgery in Udi. versity College, London. From the fifth enlarged and carefully revised London edition. Illustrated with six hundred and thirty engravings on wood. With additions by John AsuntRST, JR., A. M., M. D., Vice-President of the Philadel. phia Pathological Society, Surgeon to the Episcopal Hospital, etc., etc. Philadelphia : Henry C. Lea. 1869. Pp. 1238, imperial octavo. Cloth, $7.50; leather, $8.50,
From Robert Clarke & Co., 65 West
Fourth street, Cincinnati, Ohio.
Among the various works issued frem the medical press of this country, during the present year, this edition of the "Science and Art of Surgery” stands pre-eminent both for its intrinsic value and its handsome appearance.
Through four editions the work is so well known to the profession that any extended notice of it here would be entirely superfluous; for we believe it to be generally admitted that no single work, either American or foreign, pertaining to the principles and practice of surgery, has been so aniversally received with favor as this of Professor Ericksen. For ourselves, we may be permitted to say, that for the last ten years we have been in the constant habit of referring to “ Ericksen," when beset by doubts and difficulties in the managment of our surgical cases; and owing to the completeness of the work in details relating to the pathology, diagnosis and treatment of the affections falling within the domain of surgery, we have seldom failed of obtain ing the information sought.
The fifth London edition, from which this is prepared, is in two volumes; but by greatly enlarging the page, the American publisher has presented the English edition complete in a single large though not unwieldly volume. The improvements in this edition, as clearly stated in the preface, are, “The whole work has been remodeled; many of the wood-cuts have been re-drawn, and nearly one hundred new ones added. Some chapters have been, in a great measure, re-writteis, and much new matter has been added beyond the mere general enlargement of the work. The additions thus made have not been confined to any one particular part, but have been widely and generally distributed through the various subjects of which the work treats;" and
in them are presented a notice of the more important recent advances in the science of surgery, and the results of the more extended experience of the author in the practice of its art. The chapter devoted to ophthmalic surgery is written
by Mr. Sheatfield, one of the ophthalmic surgeons to University College Hospital, and adds much to the value of the work.
The chapter on syphilis has been re-arranged by Mr. Berkley Hill, surgeon to the Lock Hospital, London. And the subjects of general surgical diseases, including pyæma, scrofula, and tumors, have been revised by Dr. Alexander Bruce; while others have assisted in other branches.
The additions made to the work by Dr. Ashhurt are of especial interest, and consist mainly of such practical matters as have been omitted by the author in relatîon to American surgery; and we believe the general verdict will be that the American editor has performed his work, both as a text-book for the student and as a work of reference for the practitioner, at the same time we observe several instances in which we think a brief notice of the statistics collected by American surgeons, in relation to certain operations and accidents might have been inserted with advantage.
A well arranged table of contents and a copious index render the work convenient as one of reference. In the way of paper, printing and binding, the work is superb.
J. R. W.
A MANUAL OF ELEMENTARY CHEMISTRY - THEORET
ICAL AND PRACTICAL.
BY GEO. FOWNS, F. R. Sag Late Professor of Practical Chemistry in University College, London. Edited by Robt. Bridges, M. D., Professor in the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy. Published by Henry C. Lea, Philadelphia, 1869. For sale by Robt.
Clarke & Co., Cincinnati.
The publishers have given us this re-print from the tenth revised and corrected English edition; the notes, together with a number of illustrations having been added by the American editor. Fownes' chemistry has long enjoyed the favor of students, more especially of those directing their attention to the science of medicine, and this edition, fairly representing, as it does, the present condition of the science, will, we are sure, continue to hold the favor it has so long enjoyed.