Page images

THE COMPLEXION IN CANCER ditions for the very purpose of preventing this
E. M. PERDUE, A. M., M. D., D. P. H.

excessive deaquification of tissue and the attend Professor of Preventive and Tropical Medicine in Ec

ant irritation of the chemical rays of the sun. lectic Medical University: Director Johnson's Pathological These facts are of great interest and importance Laboratory for Cancer Research, Kansas City, Missouri.

in the incidence of cancer. In the incidence of In introducing the novel title of this paper cancer, in the prevention of cancer, one of the it is the purpose of the writer to emphasize the most important facts is complexion. Despite the value of clinical observation in the study of can- great weight of authority to the contrary, skin cer. It is recognized that the experimental and cancers above the collar and below the wrist band not the clinical method is the vogue in all the on blond men who lead an outdoor life exceed all great endowed, recognized and approved labora- other cancers put together. tories. So firmly have the experimental methods This statement is true for the United States become intrenched, that to do or even suggest and for all countries where a people of light the clinical study of cancer, is to call down upon complexion is subjected to bright sunlight. The the head of the investigator all the opprobrium only regions of the earth having a blond populaof a so-called scientific and medical press which tion are those regions having a large proportion is controlled by organized medicine. In face of fog and moisture-laden atmosphere, the British of all this, we are bold enough to state that à Isles, Scandinavia, North Germany. The indiclinical study of cancer not only brings out many genous populations of the rest of the world have important truths, but overthrows many of the accommodated themselves to their sunlight by hypotheses of the experimental research labora- varying degrees of pigmentation of the skin. tories.

Among these peoples the incidence of cancer of Cancer is a chronic alkaline autointoxication. the skin is very low. White peoples who have When we first studied chemistry, we were taught colonized countries of much uninterrupted sunthat there were three states of matter: gaseous, shine are the principal victims of cancer of the liquid and solid. Now we know that there are at skin. This is especially true of the United States least four states of matter: gaseous, liquid, col- and the Australian Commonwealth. The aboriglodial and solid. Nature looks with such favor ines accommodated to the sunshine of the upon the collodial state that she has chosen it United States have the brownish copper colored exclusively for the presentation of all organic skin of the American Indian; the native negritos, forms. With a few exceptions, organic colloids of Australia are almost black. may be defined as protoplasm in combination A moist atmosphere absorbs the rays of the with ionized water. The youth of every organism infra-spectrum and up to the red in the spectrum, is characterized by an abundance of ionized and becomes heated thereby. The light rays are water and a corresponding scarcity of solid mat- not absorbed by a moist atmosphere, but may be ter. As the organism grows older, the tissues greatly diffused. The rays of the ultra-spectrum give up water and become more dense and solid. from the violet on through the rays too short As alkalinity is the condition of all growth, the to be seen are absorbed by a moist atmosphere

. alkalinity increases with the concentration. All

The rays of the ultra-spectrum are the rays colloidal reactions are necessarily slow. The which tán and burn. They are of the same nature alkaline concentration of the tissues is slow. It as X-rays and the rays of electric light. The is retarded by all conditions which hinder drying. rays of the ultra-spectrum in tropical countries It is accelerated by all conditions which facili- greatly exceed the rays of the same character in tate evaporation. This evaporation of water England and Scandinavia. They are in much from colloidal tissues is called deaquification. It greater proportion at high altitudes. Persons is the process and mechanism of senility. The of white skin become sunburned on going up trajectory of life is indigenous and specific to from humid plains to the tops of high mountains every organism at its inception. Time is of the Tyndall states that he became markedly tanned essence of the process. The time necessary to ac- by working under an electric light. complish senility is a specific attribute of every The first essential in the etiology of cancer tissue, be it vegetable or animal. Hence the age of the skin is the production of the systemic conof ripening and of senility is past the middle life ditions of hyperalkalinity. As already indicated, of the organism.

this is the physiological result of the natural proIn all organisms, the appearance of ripening cess of senility or growing old. This condition or senility can be hastened by deaquification can be hastened by constipation and defective This is a matter of common knowledge and com- elimination. As the tissues are all colloidal, the mon observation in the ripening of grain. Agri- process of deaquification is necessarily slow. culture is not hedged about by the prejudices of Deaquification is hindered by all agencies which medicine. It is equally true of human tissue. It retard evaporation. Among civilized blond races is so true, that for untold ages, our human or- the chief agency retarding the process of deaquiganism has sought to adapt itself to climatic con- fication is clothing. The skin under the clothing


in the thin skinned blond is very soft and pliable, death of cells. Hence we do not know the workeven when he has cancers on the face and hands. ing field of the x-ray and radium as we do know The exposed parts of the body, that is, the face the working field of heat after the criteria of and neck above the collar, and the wrists and Doyen. But we do know that x-rays and radium hands below the wrist band, are subject to the rays are rays of the ultra-spectrum and that they drying processes of air and heat. These tissues irritate tissue. The x-ray specialist knows that become dry, harsh and locally increased in alka- blonds are more subject to x-ray burns than are linity because the chemical changes in the col- people of dark complexion. Pigmentation of loids are slow and cannot be equalized as rap- the skin is a protection against the rays of the idly as evaporation removes the water. In the

In the ultra-spectrum artificially produced, just as it is brunetts and in the darker races, this evaporation a protection against the rays of the ultra-specis not nearly so rapid, and as a result, the ex- trum of sunlight. posed surfaces of their bodies are not subject to

In the regions of the earth having the maxithe drying experienced by the blonds.

amount of uninterrupted sunlight, the The second essential in the etiology of cancer aborigines are dark skinned. In the regions of of the skin is chronic irritation. This can be fog and clouds which interrupt the rays of the supplied by the rubbing of the collar, by the ultra-spectrum, the aborigines are blonds. When bridge or bow of glasses, by the irritation of pro- these blond peoples migrate to countries having jections of the skin such as warts and moles, and the maximum amount of uninterrupted sunlight by the rays of the ultra-spectrum. The cancers and live out of doors or engage in the outdoor of the skin in blond persons who lead an outdoor occupations, they become the victims of skin life owe their location to irritation by the rays cancer. The skin, after middle life becomes dry of the ultra-spectrum. This has been demon- and harsh. Senile keratoses and verruca senilis strated clinically and experimentally by the pro- appear. These develop into epithelomas. Since duction of epitheliomas by the use of the x-ray. the clothing protects the skin of the body, these The rays of the ultra-spectrum are the rays

growths appear above the collar and below the which cause the irritation called sunburn.

wrist band.

The natural protection against sunburn is called tan- Only recently I examined a tall thin blond ning. Persons of light complexion tan and sun- man who had a mass of epitheliomas on the back burn readily. Races long accustomed to the of his neck and none on his face. On asking his higher degrees and longer duration of sunlight occupation he stated that he was a sexton in a are of dark skin. This dark skin, of all shades cemetery and for many years had been stooping from yellow to black, is the protection of these over digging graves and burning the back of his races from the irritation of the rays of the ultra- neck. A clinical study of many thousands of spectrum. Heretofore it has been the approved cases leads to the inevitable conclusion that skin custom for sociologists to regard pigment in cancers prevail upon blond persons who lead an the skin as an evidence of racial inferiority. Only outdoor life. In America, this means the men. a few savants have studied the physiology of I have seen a few skin cancers upon blond women skin pigmentation. Since the field of scientific who worked in the fields bareheaded. Blond men endeavor was preempted by the sociologist, the who work indoors are seldom the victims of skin scientist did not receive a hearing in America. cancer. In the clinical observation of many thouThe negro was black, and therefore was of in- sands of cases, I have found that the external ferior race. The fact that he did not have skin epitheliomas in blonds are to the same tumors cancers had no relation to the etiology of the in brunetts as at least 500 to one. The propormalady in blond Caucasians.

tion may be 1000 to one. The phenomena of life are the expression of These clinical findings support in an incontrovibrations. The vibrations of all individuals vertible manner the finding of hyperalkalinity as differ. As yet, we are only beginning to measure the true constitutional condition in the etiology their rapidity and their wave length. The vibra- of cancer, and the further secondary requisite, tions of living things have not been standard- chronic irritation at the locus of tumor growth. ized. We know that the rays of the infra-spec- They further indicate means of prevention and trum up to red are stimulating to the physio- give a clinical history which should encourage logical or functional action of organs. We know early diagnosis and radical treatment of these that blue is sedative, and that the rays of the lesions of the skin. ultra-spectrum are irritating even to the point of 1320 Main St. destroying the life of tissue. We have not learned the vibration death point of tissue as we have the thermal death point. We do not know Dr. A. B. McGlothlan, of St. Joseph, was the difference between the intensity of vibrations elected president of the Buchanan County Medicausing irritation and of vibrations causing the cal Society at its annual meeting, Dec. 4.

The Medical Herald

rather than that of any particular group of men.

Laws will be amended, wage scales adjusted, Incorporating the kansas City Dedical Inder-Lancet

business methods altered, business and profes

sional relations of classes and masses rearranged, Vol. XXXVII DECEMBER, 1918

No. 12 and this all to be adjusted to the newer views: CHAS. WOOD FASSETT, Managing Editor

and altered temperament of our returning two

million fighting men with their larger and 713 Lathrop Building, Kansas City, Mo.

broader estimate of life. One factor helpful

toward realizing the new order of affairs will be ASSOCIATE EDITORS

the well balanced, orderly respect of our soldiers P. I. LEONARD, St. Joseph.

for discipline and the Central Government. DocJ. M. BELL, St. Joseph. JNO. E. SUMMERS, Omaha.

tors as citizens, will have a part to play in re

construction, they will add balance to the disCONTRIBUTING EDITORS

turbed era of civil affairs with a power equal to H. ELLIOTT BATES, New York. JOE BECTON, Greenville, Texas.

the force they exerted in winning the war. May HERMAN J. BOLDT, New York. A. L. BLESH, Oklahoma City.

we as a profession realize our influence and with G. HENRI BOGART, Paris, III.

due regard for men and for our grand govern-
ST. CLOUD COOPER, Fort Smith, Ark. ment acquit ourselves as becomes the American
W. T. ELAM, St. Joseph.

medical profession.

J. M. B.
S. S. GLASSCOCK, Kansas City, Kan.
H. R. HARROWER, Los Angeles, Cal.
JAS. W. HEDDENS, St. Joseph.
VIRGINIA B. LE ROY, Streator, ni.

DONALD MACRAE, Council Bluffs.

D. A. MYERS, Lawton, Okla.

From the present outlook it would appear that
JOHN PUNTON, Kansas City.
W. T. WOOTTON, Hot Springs, Ark.

in the demobilization of the army, officers can, HUGH H. YOUNG, Baltimore.

if qualified, join the Regular Corps or the Medical Reserve Corps, or they may be honorably discharged. The medical officers of the army

and navy constitute a splendid body of some The Editors' Forum

35,000 physicians, well trained and well equipped. It would be a mistake-in fact, almost a crimeto permit these men to be completely detached from the army and navy and to be absorbed in

.civilian life. Hence it is to be hoped that the The Reconstruction

third group-those requesting honorable disPeriod

charge—will be comparatively small. The reconstruction period upon which we are entering is an era of greater possibilities than the man in the street realizes, and the demand for

Lay Press men of great intellect, wisdom, firmness and tact

Sarcasm is apparent as never before in centuries. Should

The health board blames the doctors for the anarchy or lawless socialism gain the ascend

new outbreak of flu, charging that they have ency in European states and from there spread failed to report cases for quarantine. Well, when to our shores-and it is a possibility-civilization

a doctor's practice depends upon his ability to may be well nigh annihilated, and a period of please his patients, giving them operations, quarconditions similar to those of the French Revo

antines, etc., when they want them and postponlution become universal. Anarchists under what- ing them when they don't, what's the doctor to ever name they rally, represent a movement hav

do? Surely the doctors on the health board ing no regard for God nor law. Present world- ought to understand that.-K. C. Star. wide conditions must be met by a broad spirit of charity, liberality, christian forbearance, firmness and wisdom. In our own land, problems

No More Physicians to Be Comsimilar to those met by our continental forefath

missioned in the Medical Corps ers, directed by Washington and later by Lincoln a half century ago, are to be faced, and the At 10 o'clock on the morning of Nov. 11th, integrity and patriotism of the citizens may be the War Department discontinued the commistried as by fire. Personal preferences must give sioning of physicians in the Medical Corps. way to the good of the community, the state, the This condition, in all probability, is permangovernment. Classes, unions, organizations, if ent and no further consideration will be given they be made up of true American citizens, will applicants for a commission in the Medical Corps consider the general welfare of our country until further notice.

Rehabilitation of

Public Health Expansion
Our Wounded

by State University The United States Government is resolved to Expansion in the work of agriculture, medo its best to restore every wounded American chanical arts and public health will be asked soldier and sailor to health, strength, and self- by the University of Missouri when the budget supporting activity.

is presented to the next session of the state Until his discharge from the hospital all the legislature. The university already has a de

partment of preventive medicine, which, it is medical and surgical treatment necessary to re- hoped, may be enlarged so that a state-wide store him to health is under the jurisdiction of public health movement may be conducted. the military or naval authorities, according to the branch of the service he is in. The vocational training, the reeducation and rehabilitation neces

Michigan Defective sary to restore him to self-supporting activity, is

Law Unconstitutional under the jurisdiction of the Federal Board for Vocational Education.

A Michigan law, providing for the steriliza

tion of mental defectives or insane persons mainIf he needs an artificial limb or mechanical tained wholly or in part by public expense in appliance the Government will supply it free, will public institutions has been declared unconstitukeep it in repair, and renew it when necessary. tional by the Michigan supreme court, because it If after his discharge he again needs medical arbitrarily selected for sterilization those contreatment on account of his disability, the Gov- fined in institutions. The opinion shows that ernment will supply it free. While he is in the out of what might be termed a natural class of hospital and while in training afterwards the defective and incompetent persons the legislasoldier or sailor will receive compensation as if ture selects only those already under public rein service and his family or dependents will re- straint, leaving immune from its operation all ceive their allotment.

others of like kind to whom the reason for the A wounded soldier or sailor, although his legislative remedy is normally and equally, at disability does not prevent him from returning least, applicable. to employment without training, can take a course of vocational training free of cost and

Owl Drug Company the compensation provided by the war risk in

Adopts New Policy. surance act will be paid to him and the training will be free, but no allotment will be paid to his The profession will no doubt be interested family.

in the recent announcement of the The Owl Drug Every Liberty Bond holder who holds his

Co. stating that beginning December 1st, no bond is keeping up a part of this great work of preparations for the self-treatment of venereal restoring to health, strength, and usefulness the the company, located on the Pacific Coast and

diseases will be sold in the 29 retail stores of men who have suffered for their country.

in the Middle West.

When such preparations are called for, the

salesman is instructed to explain the new policy Buchanan County Medical

of the company and give the customer a carefully Society Lunch

prepared confidential circular, which explains the Wednesday evening, Nov. 20th, St. Joseph

seriousness of all venereal diseases and the imdoctors and dentists met together at Hotel portance of consulting a reliable physician and

a list of such will be furnished upon request. Francis for a fellowship lunch at 7:30. About 50 of the fraternities were present. After the

Standard preparations, recognized by the promeal Dr. De Lamater made a report to the com

fession will be carried in the prescription room bined societies upon the recent influenza epi- and sold only upon the orders from a physician. demic. The report showed out of 2,000 cases Some weeks previous to this announcement there were 195 deaths, including those from pneu- the laboratories of The Owl Drug Co. disconmonia and other complications. A strong talk tinued the manufacture of several preparations upon the necessity of a city hospital was made for self-treatment. by the doctor. The society promised its support This innovation was decided upon after the in every way toward the success of the move- management gave due consideration to the rement. Moving pictures, operated by W. F. port of the Surgeon General of the U. S. Army Goetze, illustrating surgical procedures used showing an alarming prevalence of venereal disduring the war, took up the balance of the even- eases among the civilians who were examined ing. The occasion was enjoyable to all in at- preparatory to entering the army. tendance. The meeting was one arranged by the The action of other druggists will be awaited program committee of the society. J. M. B.

with interest.

Keep the

Windows Open
Dr. Jos. Grindon, of St. Louis, calls attention

The World Peace News
to the fact that physicians, like other teachers,
sometimes fail in conforming practice to precept.
This truth finds illustration during the present
prevalence of influenza by a visit to the offices

IN HOSPITAL of some of our brethren, where windows are al

Hushed and happy whiteness, lowed to remain closed in crowded waiting

Miles on miles of cots, rooms, thus not only exposing their patients to

The glad, contented brightness

Where sunlight falls in spots. additional ills, but at the same time seriously reflecting upon the doctor's interest in their wel

Sisters swift and saintly fare, or upon his intelligence. Open a window !

Seem to read on grass;

Like flowers stirring faintly, Victory, Peace and Glory enough for every

Heads turn to watch them pass. one who was fortunate enough to have been in it

Beauty, blood and sorrow, at the finish. History will tell us that the 35,000

Blending in a trancemembers of the Medical Corps are entitled to

Eternity's tomorrow full credit for their valiant and heroic service.

In this half way house of France. The Medical Review of Reviews announces

Sounds of whispered talking, that it has purchased and will absorb the third

Labored, indrawn breath; oldest medical journal in America—the Buffalo

Then, like a young girl walking,

The dear familiar Death. Medical Journal-founded seventy-four years

-Lieut. Coningsby Dawson, “Glory of the ago by Dr. Austin Flint, and published regularly

Trenches." (John Lane.) ever since. The journal was edited for many years by Dr. Wm. Warren Potter, and since the A letter from Maj. Oliver C. Gebhart, who is the death of Dr. Potter the editorial chair has been Director Field Hospital, states that his command has ably filled by Dr. A. L. Benedict. The Medical been in the thick of the fight in the last brilliant Review of Reviews further announces that it will

battles. be greatly increased in size beginning with the Dr. William W. Duke, of Kansas City, now a capJanuary, 1919, issue, but that the subscription

tain in the Red Cross medical service, is on the way

from Paris to Germany to take charge of hospitals price will remain the same, $2.00.

left by the retreating Germans. Almost a Fortune—A typographical error in Dr. B. Belove, formerly orthopedic surgeon of last week's issue of the Atchison Co. Mail made Kansas City charitable institutions, has gone to Fort an item in the county court proceedings say that Oglethorpe, Ga., where he has been assigned to a Dr. A. McMichael had been paid $1,995.50 for United States orthopedic hospital for the rehabili

tation of wounded and disabled soldiers. medical services rendered at the county home and to destitute families. In correcting it to the Major General William C. Gorgas will soon resume proper $195.50 this week the Mail exclaims : his work for the eradication of yellow fever in South Holy smoke! Nineteen hundred and ninety

American countries which he was compelled to aban

don temporarily when the United States entered the five dollars would buy an awful lot of pills, and war and called him to the office of Surgeon General we couldn't help but wonder what the fifty cents of the Army. was for."

Physical Training in Schools—While the general And whoever heard of a country doctor re- staff of the army is working out a plan of universal ceiving $2,000 at one time!

military training for submission to the president as a

part of the permanent army organization, Secretary A heart and a dollar-This is what the Ameri

of the Interior Lane is preparing to ask Congress for can Red Cross asks of you; a heart that prompts legislation extending federal aid to the public schools you to make that dollar do its best work in carry

throughout the country for the establishment of sysing one more message of mercy overseas; a

tems of physical education and training. heart that bids you give, give, give of your com

Influenza Mortality Exceeds That of the Warfort to add to that of our boys who are fighting

With the unfolding of the government statistics, it

will be shown that the late influenza epidemic has your battles “Over there;" a heart that makes

taken a much greater toll of American life than has you one with the sufferers who weary through the great world war. The reports so far from fortythe long nights of pain until dawn breaks over six large cities, show a total of 82,306 deaths from the dark, low mists of Flanders Fields and lights

influenza and pneumonia. A liberal estimate of the up the row of crosses that stand for those whose

death loss in the American Expeditionary forces will

not exceed 45,000. lives have slipped away with its coming. Just “A Heart And A Dollar." Few of us indeed

Commissioning of Physicians Ceases—The Sur.

geon General's office advises that since 10 o'clock of who have not as much as that. We have been

the morning of November 11, the War Department asked to "Give until it hurts;" let us give until discontinued the commisioning of officers in the we know it helps as well.

various corps of the army, including physicians in the

« PreviousContinue »