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until it is only a “rattling skeleton ”—though reason has with a despotic will demanded the surrender of much which is dearest and most sacred-the warmest, truest and most endearing affections of the human heart still cluster around the time-honored principles of medicine, protecting them against the ruthless vandalism of the age.
Medicine, then, has engendered a genuine sentiment of gratitude in the breasts of men; and it must follow from the premises that it is applicable to the wants of the race, that it does meet and supply a preordained necessity, that it is a part of the Divine plan instituted for the harmonious government of creation, and that it is ipso facto a truth, a science.
THOUGHTS ON ANTIFEBRIN.
BY C. T. LOVE, M.D., HUMBOLDT, TENN. We desire to offer for your deliberate consideration a few thoughts on the above caption. There has been of late a great deal of study, and no little chemical and pharmaceutical work expended on the phenol tribe or coal-tar derivatives, of which there are many, and antifebrin of the number. We have selected this from preference, being more familiar with its use than any of the others. On this, as on all subjects, there is a great variety of opinion.
Some doctors, like other people, have very strange and peculiar notions ; in my town one doctor introduces antikamnia and that is his pet, his hobby; in your town another introduces phenacetin—that is his pet, his hobby, to the exclusion of remedies of the same class. The best way is to try all, test all, and hold fast that which is good.
We have had more literature on the general use of antifebrin than we have on its specific action or effect; the thing we want, the thing we need, is the philosophy of its action—the modus operandi. Now, gentlemen, we have used antifebrin as well as others of its class, and watched its action to the best of our ability: We conclude that it does not nauseate, that it does not act directly on the secretions nor excretions, but brings down the fever promptly from 104° or 106° F. to nor
mal heat, and that in the space of a few hours, say three or four, as we have often seen. We notice, secondarily, it produces free perspiration or sweating, increased action of the kidneys, and might safely say, all secretions. How does it accomplish such stupendous work? We have sat by the sick bed, watch and clinical thermometer in hand, waiting and watching with the deepest interest and anxiety, and have decided that its primary action through the nervous system is arrest of metamorphosis of tissue; it stops the eremacausis or slow combustion of the tissues; and we notice in typhoid and other protracted fevers the patients get up without that emaciation so very common in these cases.
Now, gentlemen, we positively decide from the order of change in the symptoms of the case, that the arrest of metamorphosis of tissue or supply of fuel to the flame is first; the fever being checked, perspiration or sweating, with action of the kidneys, follow; then the lowering of the pulse in volume, force and frequency, just exactly as we have in the natural passing off of high fever when no medicine has been given.
Doctors, like other people without due meditation and solıd reflection, often take the post hoc for the propter hoc view. This makes a vast difference, yes, all the difference, just equal to putting the cart before the horse, to use a common, rough, cant phrase.
Gentlemen, it has been suggested to us that in typhoid and some other protracted fevers death often occurs from heart failure, and that antifebrin is dangerous by lowering the heart's action. We do not believe that it is one-tenth as dangerous as to let the fever run rampant, scot-free, over the patient, doctor and friends. Continued high fever, say 104° or 106° F. for a few days will kill any patient, especially a child. We have often noticed fever cases, if the nurse neglected to keep the fever in check the patient would soon become obtuse, dull, stupid, and we are satisfied from the tendency if let alone would result in coma and death. We are decidedly in favor of cremation, but we want the party dead first.
Do not misunderstand nor misrepresent us-we are not in favor of antifebrin in fevers to the exclusion of any of the aids we may have after a close, critical survey of all the symp
toms; cold drinks, cold or tepid bathings to suit the case, gelsemium if determination to the brain and the pulse from hardness, justifies it; if stupor, belladonna; if a small, frequent pulse, aconite; empty the bowels at the beginning, afterward just avoid constipation; we are not an advocate of much purging.
Remember, never let the fever run above 102° F.; if you do it will be above the secreting point, then the debris and effete matter will remain in the circulation producing sepsis or blood poison, and probably terminate in death. We see no comfort in the action of antifebrin to the homeopath on the idea, similia similibus curantur.
We will give you our opinion of high continued fever in a nutshell : last summer, a gentleman called at my gate wanting me to go four miles to see his child. We asked, How old is your child ? and what is the matter? His reply was, Six months old, and has had a hot burning fever for three days and nights. We told him it was no use to go, the child would certainly die. He replied the fever was not so high as we might suppose. We never went.
Fever runs higher in tetanus than in any disease we read of because the nervous system is especially involved, and it contains a larger proportion of phosphorus that is more highiy combustible than ordinary tissues, and we find that it is one of the most fatal of all diseases. Asiatic cholera is also one of the neuroses, and the fever would run much higher than we find it but for the nausea and heavy drain from the system. In pneumonia when a large portion of the lung is involved, we do not find a very high grade of fever because the lung involved and the character of the breathing cuts off the fuel oxygen, and arrests the metamorphosis of tissue ; you see at a glance there is a cause for everything; the thing causeless never comes.
Now, gentlemen, pardon me for occupying your valuable time for this apparent or seeming digression, but we think every thought pertaining to fever or its treatment may cast a faint or glimmering light on the main question before us.
We will, with your kind permission, venture a positive digression by way of kind and friendly warning. The world
seems to us to be all out of order. Look at the commercial world : combines, trusts, strikes, and men becoming millionaires in a short time. The political world is no better—a regular catch and grab business; the legal, after the same sort ; the religious world, permit us to leave them in the hands of their God. Now what shall we say of the religio-, politicomedical profession?
In conclusion, permit me to refer you to what their God sayeth : “Honor the physician with the honor due unto him, for the uses which ye may have of him, for the Lord hath created him. For of the Most High cometh healing, and he shall receive honor of the king. The skill of the physician shall lift up his head and in the sight of great men he shall be in admiration. The Lord hath created medicines out of the earth, and he that is wise will not abhor them. Was not the water made sweet with wood, that the virtues thereof might be known? And he hath given men skill that he might be honored in his marvelous works. With such doth he heal men and taketh away their pains. Of such doth the apothecary make a confection, and of his works there is no end, and from him is peace over all the earth.”
INEQUALITY OF BODILY TEMPERATURE THE CAUSE
OF TAKING COLD.
PROF. E. H. RANDLE, BYHALIA, MISS.
It has long been known that exposure to a current of air is likely to cause one to take cold. If we enlarge upon this and say that one part of the body's being warmer or cooler than another part is the chief cause of taking cold, we will better express our opinion.
By a cold, we will include all the forms of what is commonly meant by a “ bad cold,” whether of the head, throat, lungs, or other part. We will not discuss the differences in the kinds of cold, nor attempt any critical definition of them. All kinds yield most generally to the same treatment and are results of like causes.
To make a test case it is best to take a sensitive subject. We will therefore take a person already afflicted with cold,
for it requires but a trifle for him to take more cold. Such a one begins to cough or sneeze, or give some signs of increasing cold whenever subjected to any conditions in which one part of his body becomes warmer or cooler than the other parts. If he is in a current of air, one side becomes cooler than the other and he takes more cold. If he takes a ride on a hot summer day, one side becomes warmer than the other and the same result follows. If he increases or decreases the clothing—especially underwear—of only one portion of the body, that part will lose its equilibrium of heat and cause more cold. This is, perhaps, the reason that “bad colds” are more prevalent in spring and fall, on account of so much injudicious and unequal changing of clothes. The flannel shirt should never be donned or doffed without the flannel drawers being treated in the same way. If the patient takes a position near a hot stove, or fire, he will soon give evidence of increasing cold; if he "bake” his feet the same effect will result. In such a case, if one will turn round frequently, stand up, walk the floor, and scarcely be still, he will decrease his cold. If overcoats and overpants would always go together, they would not cause half the number of colds that the overcoats alone do. “Keep warm feet and a cold head,” is a wise saying; not because it is correct, but because we usually keep a hot head and cold feet. A nearly equal temperature with the feet slightly cooler than the head on account of habit, is, perhaps, the best. Thin shoes and socks the year round, and often plunged into the snow and slush and mud, and allowed to dry on the feet, are frequently causes of cold, and show that the feet are the hardiest members of the body. The evil of a feather bed in summer time, is that it keeps the under side of a person much warmer than the upper side. A feather bed should never be used when less than two quilts are required.
Any cold can be cured in one or two days by preserving well the equality of bodily temperature. This is a difficult task out of doors. Keep comfortably warm, and no warmer. Toddies and all stimulants I have usually found to be injurious, because these heat the head more than they do other parts of the body; and the head, especially when it is affected with cold, is already too warm. In such cases the head should