SURGERY MINUS. Several years ago I heard of a man up in Canada who had an infected wound which resulted in his whole arm swelling and become so badly infected that two or three surgeons had said that the arm had to come off. He happened go visit a friend of his, a farmer, way out in the open, and the man said, “Shucks, you arent going to lose that arm. Just come over here to the barn”.

Back in the benighted days, so far back I cannot tell the ear, before science had any truck with the lowly mold and the jaw-breaking sulfas, I was called to treat a man with an infection on the dorsum of one of his feet. He and his family were full of doubts a to the power of sugar and had it not been for his wife, a niece of a physician who was a member of this Association many years ago, I would not have lasted long.

If my memory serves me right our good friend Lachesis in about the 200th potency brought him through, much to the surprise and impression of the family. Wallowing around in the cess-pool of ignorance I had no other fear but not getting the right remedy would be may Waterloo. As a result he recovered without skin eruptions, anemia and plugged kidneys.

That the impression held was proved last winter when I was asked to see the brother-in-law of the brother-in-law of this man.

When I first saw him he was a sorry sight. His fact looked like a cut wheat field on an August day. He was not able to shave and his beard was sandy and stood like stubble above a yellow crust cracked as the ground becomes in dry weather. The rest of his body looked like all the insects in the world had bitten him. The itching was intense and he scratched haphazardly, not having time to make up his mind where to scratch first. On his leg was a varicose ulcer which looked black and dirty and oozed a bloodstained serum.

A few days before I appeared on the scene he had been seen by a doctor who took his wife aside and in a grave and solemn manner informed her the leg must come off pronto. He would make a reservation at the hospital at once. He called the hospital but it was so full of people suffering from psychoneurosis New Delirium that it would be a day or two before they could get him in. Under the press of circumstances he could live a few more days anyway without benefit of amputation. The hospital would call as soon as one of the New Deal pets would admit he was well enough to get out and go to work. Tearfully the wife called her brother and he called me.

It was learned that the ulcer and followed a striking of the shin on a wheelbarrow. He had had varicose veins long before. They had used various local treatments without benefit and someone suggested a sulfa ointment which had set off the fireworks and the train of incidents above related.

Still benighted, I gave the man Sulphur, advised the use of mutton tallow and an elastic stocking. I saw him two months ago with the ulcer completely healed, skin clear and a history of having worked for two months.

From other sources I learned that the man who advised amputation had only there methods in his armamentarium: Sulfa and penicillin and, when these failed, surgery. He is permitted hospital privileges and is on the loose to practice his triple treatment and yet a benighted person who gave nature a chance cannot get into a hospital with a shoehorn. O Tempora, O Mores!



DR. MARION B. ROOD [Lapeer, Michigan]: Mr. Chairman, may I bring in a very outside argument? We all have little hobbies. Mine is history. Toynbee says, “No civilization was ever killed from the outside.” It always committed suicide first and he can prove it. It seems to me that American Hospital Association, if this is a sample, is committing suicide today with such methods. Their worst enemy, as they see it, may be their saviour yet- homoeopathy.

DR. ALLAN D. SUTHERLAND [Brattleboro, Vermont]: From my observation of my orthodox colleagues, it has seemed that they cannot see that there is any other method that might be effective in the care of the ill except the methods that they themselves have learned. This is an example. What a pity it would have been to amputate that mans leg, and yet no one except our enlightened homoeopath could admit that there was any chance for that man to get will except by amputation.

I wonder what would have happened to him if his leg would simply have been amputated and nothing would have been done to cure that man? It is a very discouraging situation, especially when one is practicing Homoeopathy as a lone wolf.

Dr. C.P.BRYANT [Seattle, Washington]: I want to add something in appreciation of the paper because recently, in the past two or three years, I have had two similar instances, neither one of which had amputations; but one of them was helped with Secale because of he lack of circulation in that leg, and the symptoms that went with Secale at the time his physician had told him he must have the leg amputated. He went back to see him later on, and of course it upset the doctor considerably. He said, “Never mind, you will have it off, anyway, sooner or later”.

A second one, also in the same class which this paper discusses, was a dentist. One of the most outstanding surgeons we have in Seattle had suggested and amputation and told him he felt he shouldnt delay – he also got the same surprise but fortunately he wasnt of such an intolerant nature and admitted that it had been a very unusual thing to see anything like that occur. I have done major surgery for twenty years. I have been forced in one or two instance to do amputations, but I want to leave this thought with you to show you the result of those amputations.

In spite of he most careful prescribing I could do and every assistance I gave this man, who was a worker in a bag factory. I amputated first below the knee. I thought then that maybe constitutional symptoms could help me so that I could at least see the end of amputations there, but unfortunately, these patients dont usually stay with you this long. A year afterwards, I amputated above the knee. Two years following that, I did a disarticulation at the hip. He lived two year after that.

Whether I prolonged his life or not is a matter for discussion but at least I was making to progress. That is just an evidence of the fact that sometimes we fail. I lay the blame mostly on myself, although I did study hard and did try to find his remedy and I am still convinced that had I been fortunate enough to have found a remedy a I did in the other two cases, he would never have had those amputations.

DR. HARVEY FARRINGTON [Chicago, Illinois]: Mr. Chairman, I enjoyed this paper immensely. It contained a moral and also it was quite short which some of our papers in these sessions have not been. We know that our remedies will save many limbs will save many lives when surgery probably would either leave a life long deformity or even cost the life of the patient.

I feel like quoting the Irishman who said, when his friend asked him why he was minus part of his leg.”Amputation set in and the limb had to come off”.

That is about the answer to the surgeon, but the old school surgeon is to the only one. Surgeons who claim to be homoeopaths and belong to the homoeopathic fraternity are almost as bad and their alibi is “Well, you know I am a surgeon and I have nothing to d with medicine”.

It isnt necessary to use homoeopathic remedies altogether because sometimes very simple and homely methods will suffice.

Several years ago I heard of a man up in Canada who had an infected wound which resulted in his whole arm swelling and become so badly infected that two or three surgeons had said that the arm had to come off. He happened go visit a friend of his, a farmer, way out in the open, and the man said, “Shucks, you arent going to lose that arm. Just come over here to the barn”.

He went over there and got a shovel of rock salt out of some bin, wet it, and packed the arm with it, wrapped it up in an old gunny-sack and overnight, nearly, the swelling had gone down. This matter has been important in years past. There have been several of our convents to Homoeopathy who saw the light through seeing the success of the homoeopathic remedy when they thought surgery was the only recourse.

For instance. Constantine Hering and Carroll Dunham were converted by having a similar condition in their own persons. Each one had an infected hand, and the surgeons told them that was nothing to be done but have the arm amputated.

Hering came into Homoeopathy through his study of Hahnemanns works. He was one of the few who did, but he had not reached the point where he thought that conditions which were considered surgical could be benefited.

Hartman or one of his associates persuaded him to take some Arsenicum, and you know then what Hering did for Homoeopathy. Dunham had the same thing happen exactly, and Lachesis cured him, and both of them have done almost as much for Homoeopathy as Hahnemann himself. DR. PULFORD [Closing]: I certainly appreciate the kind reception that the paper received. It wasnt written with any idea of any brilliance at all. Sulphur stuck out like a sore thumb.

The main reason I wrote it was a little illustration of the whole state into which old school medicine has fallen, in general. This ulcer wasnt as large as a fifty-cent price, and why they ever wanted to cut it off was beyond my ken, and certainly this case was not nearly as serious a the one which Dr. Bryant reported.

Dayton T. Pulford