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writing the "Cosmos," the grandest work of his life, and one of the greatest of his generation. Sanitary work is brain work; and the successful brain work of mature age is the inheritance of the most careful sanitary work in the nursery of an intelligent home.


Select the Physician Early.-Choose him, if possible, before he is needed. There is time for the greater care in the selection. There come emergencies in every home. If no selection has then been made, the messenger may rush from door to door seeking help from the first one met. There may then be no time for discrimination, and the practitioner may be one of doubtful excellence. The questions involved may be too important for such hurry.

Select a Physician of Integrity.-No amount of medical or surgical skill can compensate for the lack of good morals and a scrupulous conscience. The relation is too intimate and sacred for the admission of any one of doubtful habits or reputation. Shun the physician of bad habits, as you would a person bearing the infection of yellow fever or the plague. Is he "only a drunkard?" Pity him; try to reform him; be a "Good Samaritan " to him; but do not trust to his professional services, which demand a clear head and a firm hand.

Choose a Physician of Clean Lips.—No one of impure speech, of reckless or even careless words, or hints bordering on the obscene or immodest or vulgar, should find a place, even professionally, in any home. Don't excuse such a fault and pass it by with the expression, "O he means well!" In nine cases out of ten such a man does not mean well, and if he does, his immodest expressions are so unnecessary, and so directly in conflict with the best teachings and with the best practice of his profession, as to leave him without the least possible excuse for their utterance. Mothers, sisters, fathers, brothers, invite no such person, even professionally, to your home, and if, by any lack of information, or by any mistake of judgment, he may have come there, see to it that his visits are not repeated.

He should be Able, and Thorough as a Student, and of Untiring Industry in his Profession.-The trusts placed in his keeping include that of life itself. They demand the most intelligent, capable, and devoted service. That service may not rest with even the best knowledge of the best teachers. The new phases of diseases, and the new information furnished by additional observation and experiment, must be constantly sought for and promptly appropriated for the benefit of his patrons.

Which School of Medicine should be Preferred?-We cannot tell. Our own personal preferences may not be the best for others. We may not intrude them uninvited into the home circles of our friends. Their prejudices, like ours, may be the result in part of early education and in part of personal observation. There are other questions more important than those which determine the physician's school of medicine. In their light does he measure up to the line required?

Having Chosen Him, Give Him your Confidence.-A good physician will repay in thoroughness and zeal what is awarded him in ready and unmistaken confidence. However strong in his own convictions and rigidly earnest in his professional work, he is sensitive almost to a fault. A word or a look of mistrust disheartens him in his work; while a word or a look of unreserved trust becomes an inspiration to an intense zeal for the patient.

Having Chosen Him, Be Considerate of his Time and Rest.-His season for sleep and for recreation should be respected. In case of necessity it may be appropriately disturbed, but "before doing it," says a well known medical writer, "one should think twice." "It is his trade" is a harsh expression, and unworthy of considerate and devoted patients. Consider carefully your physician's hours for repose, for meals, and for church, and then care for him as you would have him care for you. Such appreciative care on your part will be reciprocated by him a hundred-fold.

Don't Abuse his Confidence by Trivial Calls.-If you run for him on every slight indisposition, and with unnecessary alarm excite his solicitude, and lead him to disarrange his regular plans of visitation, he will soon learn to place a lower estimate upon your demands, and to respond to them with less promptness and solicitude. Physicians dread fussy mothers."


The Physician in the Intervals of Sickness.-We quote from the observations of Prof. Poussagrieves of Paris: "There is another mistake, which I must point out to mothers, (without, however, slighting the fathers, they may well believe)—that, namely, of looking upon the physician, once chosen, as having no part or function in the family except when illness calls him there. It is a very narrow and a very dangerous conception of his role, and one which simply ignores one half of practical medicine, that is, hygiene. It is said that the Chinese pay their physicians with a liberality proportioned to their freedom from sickness during the year. I do not advise that we should imitate the Chinese; but this stimulus to hygienic care certainly smacks of the judicious. We make our first appearance in families to take charge of patients, many grave questions being resolved without our participation. Children often receive a guidance the reverse of what is proper, and we are called upon to fulfill the ungrateful office of repairing the damages we might generally have prevented."

It is Better to Care for a Man's Health than for his Disease.-"I would that the relations of physicians with their families were established on such a footing that the former should make visits as often as they should judge necessary for the prevention of disease. This would be a very precious protective measure. To select a good physician, to put the health of the whole household into his keeping, to expect of him ordinarily, besides unforeseen calls, a visit at certain intervals-once a month for instance-how comforting would it be for the parental conscience?"

Why do Successful Medical Men often die Prematurely?—This question is satisfactorily answered by Dr. Bennett: "Mortality in the medical profession after fifty years is greater than in any other profession, and greatest of all among its most eminent and successful members. The peculiar feature of the medical profession is, that work increases with age, and the public do not consent to look upon ageing medical men as veterans, but expect from them to the end the labor of youth. . . . The barrister has

junior counsel who prepares his briefs, the solicitor his head clerks, the vicar his curates, etc., but the successful consulting physician or surgeon must stand alone, whatever his age, and do his work entirely himself as long as he practices."

The Physician Should be Reverential.—If that profound naturalist, Agassiz, surrounded by his pupils in his laboratory, where were the fossils representing the past ages of life, would not enter upon his work without first uncovering his head in silent prayer to God, how should a physician feel on entering the mysterious chamber where disease and health, life and death, time and eternity, are brought into juxtaposition. If we speak of responsibility in connection with other professions, how immeasurably greater is the responsibility connected with the medical profession!

Qualities of a Good Doctor by a Doctor.-Here is a very suggestive summary of hints covering the question of choosing a physician. It has the authority of an experienced and able member of the profession. Read and ponder:

Avoid the mean man, for you may be sure he will be a mean doctor, just as certainly as he would make a mean husband.

Avoid a dishonest man; he will not be honest with you as your physician. Shun the doctor that you can buy to help you out of a scrape; a good doctor cannot be bought.

Avoid the untidy, coarse, blundering fellow, though he may bear the parchments of a medical college.

Avoid the doctor who flatters you, and humors your lusts and appetites.

Avoid the man who puts on an extra amount of airs; be assured that it is done to cover his ignorance

Avoid the empty blow-horn, who boasts of his numerous cases, and tells you of his seeing forty or fifty patients a day, while he spends two hours to convince you of the fact. Put him down for a fool.

To be a doctor one must first be a man in the true sense of the word.

He should be a moral man, honest in his dealings.

He must have good sense, or he cannot be a good doctor.

He should be strictly temperate. No one should trust his life in the hands of an intemperate doctor.

He must have some mechanical genius, or it is impossible for him to be a good surgeon.

It is a good sign if he tells you how to keep well.

It is a good sign if the members of his own family respect him.

It is a good sign if the children like him.

It is a good sign if he is neat and handy at making pills and folding powders.

It is a good sign if he is still a student, and keeps posted in all the latest improvements known to the profession for alleviating human suffering.


Early and Strange Notions of Disease. It was supposed formerly that diseases were caused by the evil spirits or demons which were supposed to have entered the body and deranged its action. Hence it was said of the dumb that they had a "dumb devil." Incantations, exorcisms, etc., were constantly resorted to in order to drive them out. It was thought by others that diseases came arbitrarily, or as a special visitation of an overruling power, and hence they were to be removed by fasting and prayer.

What is Disease ?-Modern science teaches us that disease is not a thing, but a state or condition. When our food is properly assimilated, the waste matter promptly excreted, and all the organs working in perfect harmony, we are well; but when any derangements of these functions occur, we are sick. Sickness is discord, while health is concord. If we abuse or misuse any instrument, we destroy its ability to produce a perfect harmony. A suffering body is simply the penalty of violated law, and follows as necessarily as an effect follows a cause.

Many Diseases may be Avoided.—A large proportion of the ills which now afflict and rob us of so much time and enjoyment might easily be avoided. A proper knowledge and observance of hygienic laws would greatly lessen the number of such diseases as pneumonia, consumption, catarrh, gout, rheumatism, scrofula, dyspepsia, etc. It is a lamentable fact that in densely

populated cities nearly one half of the children die before they are five years old. Every physiologist knows that at least nine tenths of these lives could be saved by an observance of the laws of health. Professor Bennett, of Edinburgh, estimated that 100,000 persons die annually in Scotland from diseases easily preventable, and the same testimony could be obtained from the medical profession in this and other countries.

Methods of Prevention.-With the advance of medical science the causes of many diseases have been determined. Vaccination has been found to prevent or mitigate the ravages of small pox. Scurvy, formerly so fatal among sailors that it was deemed "a mysterious infliction of Divine justice against which man strives in vain," is now entirely prevented by the use of vegetables or lime juice. Cholera, whose approach strikes dread in the community and for which no certain specific has been found, is but the penalty for filthy streets, bad drainage, over-crowded tenements, and general filthiness, and it may be controlled, if not prevented, by suitable sanitary measures. The same may be said of that dreadful scourge, the yellow fever. There is no quarantine like cleanliness, good drainage and ventilation.

Responsibility of Health Commissioners.-Health commissioners in our cities should be men well skilled in the medical science, and the health of the community should not be intrusted to ignorant political partisans. A great deal of responsibility rests upon the municipal authorities in regard to the prevention of disease.

The Divine Plan.-It is no doubt the intention of the all-wise Creator that we should wear out by the general decay of all the organs, rather than by the giving out of any particular part of the system; and that all the organs should work together harmoniously until the vital forces are exhausted. There is no reason why it should be otherwise; why all human organisms should not be preserved like a tree or an animal of the forest, until its allotted period of life is reached, and then decay and die. Unfortunately, as it is, the average life of man is short, and after deducting infancy, sickness and old age, scarcely more than one half is available for the active purposes of life. When we observe the almost constant violation of the laws of health so common in every community, the wonder is that people live at all.

Why Medicine is Taken.-The first step in the cure of any disease is to obey the law of health which has been violated. If medicine is taken, it is not to destroy the disease, since that is not a thing to be destroyed, but it is to hold the deranged action in check while nature repairs the injury, and brings the system again into harmonious movement. This tendency or power of nature is the physician's chief reliance. Vis medicatrix naturæ is the great sheetanchor, the power of nature to repair the breach made by violated law. The very best and most skillful physicians have little confidence in medicine itself

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