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When hope is lost all is lost. I have known not a few persons who died because they did not want to live or were at least indifferent; and probably an equal number who materially lengthened their lives by the mere determination not to die. My attention was drawn to this phase of pathology many years ago by a curious incident that came under my observation when I was a mere lad. I did not hit upon the explanation until long afterwards. I have seen the same thing repeated many times since then. A vender of medicaments of his own concoction used to visit our neighborhood about twice a year. One day as he was driving along he began to feel unwell, and, contrary to the proverb that doctors never take their own medicines, picked from his chest a vial containing what he believed would afford him relief, and drank some of its contents without looking at the label. Having occasion shortly afterward to leave his wagon to visit one of his customers, it occurred to him that he had drunk from a bottle containing a strong poison. He at once began to feel very sick. A sort of stupor seized him and he became so weak that he could hardly walk. As soon as he could get back to his medicine-chest he looked at his bottles again, when, to his great joy and greater relief, he found that he had taken just what he intended. The man declared afterwards that he believed he would have died if he had not had the means of ascertaining the facts in the case.
Though the ancients knew little of the structure of the nerves, they were well aware of the influence of the imagination as a therapeutic agency. The walls of many of their temples were covered with tablets and votive offerings in testimony of gratitude to the god by whom the sick were healed. Faith-cures and christian science are therefore by no means a new thing under the sun, but something very old under new names. Though the ancients rarely, or not at all, dissected human bodies, they had a fairly definite knowledge of anatomy derived from the inspection of brutes. The bony structure could be readily studied with the aid of the skeletons that were plentiful enough in countries dotted with battlefields. The Persian invasion alone probably left tens of thousands of corpses strewn along the retreat of the great king. The aversion to the dissection of cadavers that was felt by many of the Greeks seems to have been connected with their reverence for the human form. It was regarded as a sacrilege to mutilate even a corpse. The treatment which the dead body of Leonidas received at the hands of Xerxes was due, as Herodotus expressly informs us, to the extraordinary exasperation he felt against the Spartan king for his fierce resistance to the Persian advance. Though Achilles had dragged the dead body of Hector many times around the walls of Troy, yet Apollo preserved it uninjured. This reverence for the 'human form divine,' like many others superstitions, interfered seriously with the progress of science. The favorite gods, Zeus and Apollo, were represented as physically perfect men. The effects of this sentiment are especially evident in the manner by which those condemned to death were executed. There seems to be no other explanation of the singular
custom of administering the hemlock juice than the desire to leave the body after death as nearly as possible as it appeared in its living state. That the rule was departed from under special circumstances and in times of great excitement is no valid argument against the correctness of the explanation.
[TO BE CONTINUED.]
A GRIST OF MEDICAL GRADUATES.
THE thirty-eighth annual commencement exercises of the Detroit College of Medicine were held in Light Guard Armory, Thursday evening, May 17, 1906, when eighty-two candidates received the degree of Doctor of Medicine. The address of the occasion, which will be published in the next issue of this journal, was delivered by Doctor Frank B. Walker. After the award of diplomas a banquet was tendered the graduating class at Hotel Cadillac by the Faculty of the College. Following is a list of those upon whom degrees were conferred: S. M. Angle, O. Arndt, A. W. Blain, Jr., G. K. Boyajian, G. T. Britton, C. W. Burge, J. F. Burleson, R. C. Burt, J. B. Chapman, R. L. Clark, C. W. Courville, F. L. Covert, R. E. Dawson, W. A. DeFoe, P. J. De Pree, W. H. Dunham, G. A. Easton, O. A. Fischer, E. F. Fisher, F. G. Fisher, H. I. Flanders, R. R. Fox, H. E. Fraser, F. D. German, G. C. Griffis, J. L. Hammond, T. P. Hanna, J. H. Hanson, H. Harrison, L. L. Harrison, W. H. Haughey, Jr., L. E. Hemenway, J. H. Henry, C. F. Hinchman, W. Hipp, M. C. Hubbard, E. R. Johnston, W. G. Kanter, J. C. Kenning, H. I. Kedney, J. E. King, J. A. Klahs, B. G. W. Larke, R. W. Luce, J. F. McKay, J. C. MacKenzie, J. R. MacKenzie, C. L. D. McLaughlin, A. R. Miller, F. B. Miner, L. Mueller, F. E. Murphy, C. H. Oakman, H. A. Osborn, H. A. Ott, W. C. Pepin, H. Pepper, M. E. Pickens, A. C. Potter, A. D. Potter, F. A. Pratt, S. W. Randoph, C. J. Rollman, D. U. Saunders, F. M. Singer, C. A. Smith, W. H. Snyder, R. E. Spinks, U. G. Spohn, C. M. Stafford, T. C. Starrs, F. E. Stevens, H. A. Stewart, C. H. Stiles, J. E. Strain, F. M. Summerville, R. S. Taylor, F. Tremblay, E. C. Van Sickle, J. R. Van Sickle, W. J. Voorheis, F. T. Zieske.
THE alarming increase of pneumonia in Indiana, and the large number of deaths incident to the disease, has instigated the issuance of a bulletin by the State Board of Health calling the attention of physicians to the prevalence of the affection, and admonishing them to instruct the laity as to its seriousness and the best means of combatting the dissemination of the pneumococcus.
DOCTOR EMMA COOK, a prominent women practitioner of Detroit, died of anemia on April 14, aged fifty-eight years. Doctor Cook was a graduate of the University of Michigan, with the class of 1892.
A MEMORIAL service was held in Berlin on April 1, to commemorate the death of Doctor Max Nitze, the inventor of the cystoscope. An exposition has also been conducted showing the various stages of development in the instrument, and the material originally employed by Nitze.
THE American Gastroenterologic Association will meet in Boston, June 4 and 5, 1906. The president's address will be delivered by Doctor Henry W. Bettmann, of Cincinnati, on "The Mutual Obligations of the Surgeons and Internists in the Proper Development of Gastric Surgery."
THE Ohio State Medical Society met at Canton on May 9, for a three days' session. An interesting and instructive program was presented. The oration in Medicine was delivered by Doctor John C. Hemmeter, of Baltimore; and that on Surgery by Doctor Harvey C. Gaylord, of Buffalo.
VERILY, this is an age of remarkable progress in medical thought and practice. A contemporary reports the case of a sightless Washingtonian, to whom were transplanted the eyes of a Belgian hare. The operation is said to have been so skilfully performed that vision was completely restored!
PROFESSOR VAN ERMENGHEM, of Brussels, recently announced before the Academy of Medicine that he had proven almost conclusively the bacterial origin of cancer, and further stated that the results obtained in a long series of experiments have led him to the belief that serum derived from the organism will cure the disease.
DOCTOR EDWARD ANTHONY SPITZKA, formerly connected with the Philadelphia College of Physicians and Surgeons as demonstrator of anatomy, has been elected to the professorship of general anatomy in the Jefferson Medical College. Doctor George McClellan will occupy the chair of applied anatomy at the same institution.
THE Christian Hospital, of Chicago, an institution of undetermined reputation, was recently fined $250 for publishing, without sanction, the name of Doctor John B. Murphy as president of its executive board. The hospital authorities persisted in their employment of the name, regardless of the fact that Doctor Murphy secured an injunction restraining them from so doing, hence the penalty.
OVER a million circulars of warning have been distributed during the past two years by the German Society for the Prevention of Venereal Disease. The campaign has been very thorough, physicians, dispensaries, and the army being the agencies through which the distributions were effected. It is the purpose of the society to issue a similar circular to women and young girls during the coming year.
SMALLPOX has wreaked havoc in Chile during the past year, the country having been literally infested with the pest. Since January, 1905, more than eleven thousand cases and five thousand deaths have been recorded-a powerful argument against the existing sanitary regime of the South American republic.
ANDREW CARNEGIE has deviated from the path of library endowment by promising the sum of $10,000 to the College of Physicians and Surgeons, of Atlanta, Georgia. The college trustees are desirous of raising $100,000 for the purpose of erecting new buildings, and the steel magnate's gift will be the last $10,000 of this amount.
NEW YORK is suffering from an epidemic of diphtheria, and new cases are daily recorded. The percentage of deaths from the disease has become so high that Health Commissioner Darlington has issued an appeal to both laity and profession for a more generous employment of antitoxin. At present the death rate is fourteen per cent.
THE Commission in charge of the Michigan Sanatorium for Consumption has chosen a site two and one-half miles from the city of Howell. The location is an ideal one, since it possesses excellent natural advantages, being at an elevation of one thousand one hundred feet above sea level, and having running water, timber and a lake. The property, one hundred ninety acres, was presented by the city of Howell.
A COMMITTEE composed of American and European physicians has been formed to solicit and receive subscriptions for the erection of a monument to the late Surgeon Miculicz-Radecki, of Breslau. W. W. Keen, of Philadelphia; W. S. Halsted, of Baltimore; J. B. Murphy, of Chicago; and F. Kammerer, of New York, comprise the quartet of Americans who will represent the work in the United States and Canada.
THE establishment of a new filtration plant in connection with the Jerome Park reservoir, New York, is being agitated, the city commissioner having submitted preliminary plans to Mayor McClellan. The present move was instituted to offset the plans of a rival faction, whose idea contemplated the purchase of a new site, which, together with the cost of building the filter, would indebt the city to the extent of $8,500,000, according to a very low estimate. The plan of the present projectors is to utilize the park property for the enterprise.
THE Consolidation of the Medical College of Indiana, the Central College of Physicians and Surgeons, and the Fort Wayne School of Medicine has been effected, and the trio will henceforth form a component part of the Purdue University at Indianapolis. In a circular. announcing the change, the executives of the several colleges explain the reason therefor by stating that a concentration of interests in a city of sufficient size to offer ideal clinical facilities will best conserve the interests of all concerned-students and teachers alike. The consolidation was effected after an agitation covering a long period of years.
A wood alcohol debauch is responsible for one death and the serious. illness of several prisoners confined in the military prison at Governor's Island. The product was undoubtedly secretly conveyed to the inmates by visitors. The deleterious results ensuing from the employment of wood alcohol, even in commercial pursuits, has led to the introduction of several bills before the House Committee on Ways and Means at Washington, for the removal of the internal revenue tax on grain alcohol for industrial purposes. Painters and varnishers are especially subject to the vapors of the wood product, and a chair finisher who lost his eyesight from this cause appeared before the committee to support the measure.
DIFFERENTIAL DIAGNOSIS AND TREATMENT OF
If the title of this book is comprehensive, the contents are no less so. This includes: "The Technique of Diagnosis and Laboratory Aids to Clinical Diagnosis," 55 pages; "General Therapeutic Management," pages 55-87; “Pediatrics," 87-229; "The Digestive System," 229-332; "Circulatory System," 33-409; "Respiratory System,” 409-469; “Genito-Urinary System," 469-533; Osseous, Muscular and Articular System," 533-602; "Infectious and Contagious Diseases," 602, 643; "Diseases Due to Faulty Metabolism, Faulty Internal Secretions and Derangement of Ductless Glands," 643-675; "Nervous System," 675769; "Dermatologic Memoranda," 769-806; "Otic Memoranda," 806812; "Ophthalmic Memoranda," 812-823; "Anesthesia, Intoxications, Miscellaneous Ailments, Keeping Case Records and Accounts," 823838. This classification seems somewhat arbitrary, but may have some practical advantages that have not made themselves apparent to the reviewer. Similar reasons, probably, have placed "dysentery" in the chapters on "Pediatrics and Digestive System," lobar pneumonia and tuberculous pneumonia" in the "Respiratory System," et cetera. A more orderly though less "practical" classification, with a good index, would have answered the practical need just as much, and would almost certainly have saved space.
As for the text itself, the author has acquitted himself well of a task that at first sight seems almost impossible. That is, he has given some directions regarding each of the numerous topics included in