The biblical estimate for the age of man is not reached today in the case of many important figures in all walks of life. Instead of three-score years and ten, the number may be anywhere from forty to sixty-five. And this fact is verified so repeatedly in the news that the assertions of longevity through medical science seem ironic.


Innumerable pathological questions have been studied in the modern laboratory. These studies have brought to light new facts have rewarded their workers in many ways concerning organic and functional life. There has been the energetic spirit to investigate great problems and so find just how happens those things that do take place in the human organism in health or in disease. While some things are determined many are confused or remain in doubt. This may be a confirmation of the possibility that not by some of those paths do we reach the vital need of the patient.

It must be remembered above all thing that the clinical laboratory is an aid to diagnosis, but rarely can it alone furnish a conclusion and, therefore, in all cases I enjoin you to carefully consider together the evidence afforded by the clinical history, the physical examination, and the clinical laboratory. BARTUS TREW, M.D.

The assumption that disorder of any kind or disease of any kind is caused by a specific germ or bacterium is one of the enterprising evidences of so-called science in medicine. The premise does of course afford a substantial beginning for what is generally known as common sense. This being so, the next conclusion follows, that if you destroy the germ you destroy the disease. Which sounds plausible.

We may not look upon the diagnosis of a disease as presenting a distinct entity of invasion, as something from without that has seized the subject regardless of his invitation. We may not estimate a disorder as introduced by an outside morbific agent like a bacillus, from which the organism has no defense or protection. Human disorder must start with the human subject; moreover, with some hospitable welcome from that subject. There is something in the vitality of some subject which repels invasion. In fact, the bacterium may enter, but the disease never.

This gives rise to the inquiry, “What is the germ then doing?” And the query follows, “Is the germ a protector of the organism against invasion?” Or, if there has been invasion, and germ is there, is the germ not on an errant of mercy? All of which sounds very foolish to the present-day bacteriologist. However foolish it sounds now, it does completely dispose of the unnecessary alarm over pathogenic germs in the throat, lungs, and kidneys of healthy individuals.

The truly scientific method of study is that which begins with accurate observation. There is nothing scientific in the effort to prove anything whatever. Which does not give of itself sufficient evidence of its truth. Science is what is so, not what is supposed to be expedient, not what conforms to some favored belief, not what we might like to believe. Science is what is veritably true-nothing more, nothing less-and what may be demonstrated under suitable conditions as being undeniable.

Until these terms are met and satisfied we may not march under the banner of Science, we may not flaunt before the eyes of any audience our mere conjectures as signs of established fact. But repetition of what ought to be obvious in this respect is necessary. We have to remind ourselves of just these obvious propositions again and again in age when too many subjects and systems and projects masquerade in the name of Science.

When we approach the subject of microbiology, the study of the vital energy, function, and relation of the microorganism bearing on all the phenomena of life, we enter a department of research that is comparatively new. It is true that men of centuries past have figured in their philosophical or scientific reasoning the existence of the microorganism as the logical explanation of some problems presented to their conscious vision as a consequence of delving into different concrete difficulties.

John Hutchinson