Much good thought and money is going toward the improvement of conditions for dumb animals; just what is being done for the general welfare of that most overburdened of all our domestic beasts–the overworked doctor?.
China it seems to us has the most civilized, human and truly beneficial idea of the relation of doctors to health. There the physician is paid while his patients are in good health and receives no fees during their illness.
The result in this country from such an arrangement would be of the greatest benefit we think, to the community and to the doctors as a whole.
Why not reorganize our whole welfare fabric–giving our physicians real freedom, change and a measure of relaxation at stated intervals during the year?.
Now, in our opinion the country doctor is the most overburdened man; working in the harness of so-called civilization–a country practice develops wonderful characters in men who start with high ideals of service and use–and they have to rely on themselves in many emergencies when the city doctor calls for help!.
The all-around work of a practice where a man has just himself to depend upon develops an able man–but does such a man have a fair chance at life, as it is most worth while? What chance for rubbing brains with other brains interested in the same, or kindred subjects? His patients often gabble, but rarely talk, or say anything refreshing, stimulating or even approximately new or suggestive of fresh thoughts.
So often the out-of-town doctor plans a hard-earned vacation and some one of the numerous able mothers in his flock confide their coming addition to their growing family and ask the over- worked doctor to promise to take them through their coming, old but ever new, experience of childbirth–he promises to be the captain to steer the little new craft into its new world–(as he has promised for years)–he waits for the arrival–which as usual drags, and again he finds himself defrauded of his well-earned and long-planned vacation! He has had to be dumb about his plans- he has not felt he could disappoint an old patient who always feels no other doctor can pull them through any emergency of life or death without him!.
We think this is wrong–its a lasting wrong to the doctor to have to give up year after year his needed change–its a place where we need to educate the mothers. Of course many are trained to go to the hospitals but even then they want their own doctors to at least hold their hands during labor!.
Why not begin a great and glorious crusade now: where the country doctor will have certain stated weeks throughout the year when he goes to the nearest city and attends such lectures as he yearns for, meets the men who mean the most to him–and leaves his practice with either another man of similar calibre or a fourth-year medical student who shall study each case and present conditions and symptoms to the nearest competent man over the telephone before presenting the prescription: or in a difficult case having the nearest good doctor appear in person and prescribe–doctors taking turns in rotation.
There have been many taxes made and paid in recent years–we suggest the tax which every family should pay to their chosen doctor so that he may live without constant worry and wonder about his income, leaving him an untroubled mind to use for the greater benefit of his patients.
The best plan we have thought of thus far, is where the family receive the doctor into their midst for a call and a meal- he then has first hand opportunity to study the environment and the food used–whether balanced meals are served or whether the old-fashioned sugar-soaked and fried-in-fat foods are in evidence–whether the children are allowed the foods only fit for adults–whether the children are laboring to chew with teeth where there is no proper occlusion.
What the home atmosphere is, if nerve racking: and if so who is to blame–if shiftless where the urge for a mental backbone and energy to live a forceful life must come from–to study the needs of each group–in their home lair.
Then, that each individual must report at the doctors office at certain stated times–the doctor to have the freedom of dropping in on a family any day during a certain week.
All the work being done for the betterment of home life has made an entering wedge for this kind of efficient service: this is an advanced method–from which a greater degree of efficiency and health would result–in all classes.
We suggest that all physicians go to, or give at least five worth-while lectures in the year–if they are not good talkers, let them write five articles a year–but go to lectures they should.
Who can keep up steady work in any line year after year without becoming rutty, and having many cobwebs in their brains!.
Look at the vacations the successful surgeons and doctors in our big cities take–and they work the better for them–they have to be fresh to carry on: but how much less pressure they would be under if they had an assured income and studied their cases and families with financially untroubled minds–how they could educate families.
Let the fees for the doctors share of bringing babies into the world be a certain reasonable per cent. of the family income- and it seems to us that the specializing of this work is an excellent idea.
Many doctors need lectures on dentistry: often their own teeth are a disgrace–and they do not keep after their patients to go to the dentists when they should–and its a doctors responsibility as much as to be sure the patient takes intelligent care of their food values, proper elimination and exercise.
The old-fashioned pill pusher with the hearty hand, friendly, jolly and lack of thorough research into family needs is passe, human beings demand more thought now and realize the doctor with the analytical mind and the untiring interest in conditions as they exist, and the knowledge of all that goes to make life worth while here and hereafter, is the man they need and must have; if they are going to develop to their greatest strength and powers for use in this day and generation.
Let us all get together and see how soon we can liberate our dumb, long suffering, too little appreciated, greatest, friend of the family: the all-around life saver, our modern M.D.
DIFFERENTIAL MATERIA MEDICA.
Dr. A. Pulford and Dr. D. T. Pulford, Toledo, Ohio. We all meet cases in which data are meager and cases where two remedies may run almost parallel, making discrimination very difficult. In bedfast cases, at times it is almost impossible to discriminate between Bryonia and Rhus and in some chronic cases, between Phos. and Puls. A tubercular case recently called for such close discrimination between the last two.
We have well under way, a very fascinating, instructive, reliable and full Materia Medica, based on Kents Repertory, but as it takes in too much territory for our immediate wants, we got out a characteristic one also based upon Kents Repertory, giving the highest degree symptoms only, thus enabling us to get a better grasp on the unabridged Materia Medica. It is from this second work, that we do our differentiating.
If the editor of THE RECORDER will kindly give this space, we will append an example of how it works out, using Phos. and Puls. for illustration. All the symptoms given are of the first or highest grades only.
The first section shows all the symptoms shared equally by both remedies. Following this are the symptoms which, though shared by other remedies, are not shared by each other in any grade. Following these is a list of the symptoms found under no other remedy in the Materia Medica, other than the one under which they appear. To repeat, all symptoms below are first degree symptoms.
This is our idea of differential materia medica and how to study the remedies, by first reading what they have in common in equal grade and then referring to the same division, in the section where they differ.
Phosphorus and Pulsatilla.
Mind: Anxiety. Dullness, sluggishness, difficulty of thinking and comprehending. Excitement, excitable, Ailments from fright. Indifference, apathy, etc. Irritability. Sensitive, over- sensitive. Inclination to sit. Indisposed to talk, desire to be silent, taciturn.
Vertigo: Vertigo; mornings on rising; looking up; lying down necessary; on rising from a seat; while sitting; while walking.
Head: Pain; > open air; < hot drinks; nervous; >walking in open air; < in warm room; on wrapping up head; in forehead. Perspiration on scalp. Warm covering on head <.
Eyes: Lachrymation. Paralysis of optic nerve. Halo of colors around light. Vision foggy; dim. Myopia.
Ears: Pain. Hearing impaired.
Nose: Coryza. Epistaxis. Obstruction. Smell wanting.
Mouth: Taste wanting.
Stomach: Appetite increased; ravenous; wanting. Aversion to warm drinks; to warm food. Desires cold food. Emptiness. Eructations; of food. Nausea from warm drinks. Pain; a. eating; b. warm food; pressing. Pulsation. Vomiting; bile; food; mucus; sour.