IS THIS “RENAISSANCE”?.
A FRIEND has sent us an illustrated pamphlet telling of a proposed combination of all the hospital and medical educational institutions of the City of Boston. It is a great and entirely praiseworthy effort to provide hospital accommodation and service and educational services for a great population. The centre of it all is the Boston University Medical School and the Massachusetts Homoeopathic Hospital founded by Homoeopaths some sixty years ago. This is the central feature of the new combination. It appears from the pamphlet that a step was taken to prepare for the move when the name of the “Massachusetts Homoeopathic Hospital” was changed to the “Massachusetts Memorial Hospital.”
It was thus possible, by changing “Homoeopathic” to “Memorial,” to cover a number of memorial institutions already in existence. The Boston University School of Medicine, the original Homoeopathic Medical School founded by Homoeopaths, is, we are told, “a non-sectarian school of the highest standing” and is “fully approved by the Council on Medical Education of the American Medical Association.” This is all very nice and brotherly and if the American Medical Association undertakes to foster Homoeopathic instruction in its colleges, well and good.
But if we translate “non-sectarian” into “non-homoeopathic” we fear the chances are that the disappearance of “homoeopathic” from the name of the hospital will mean the disappearance of homoeopathy from the wards. For the practice of homoeopathy is a thing that cannot be taught by those who do not practice it, and it cannot be taught by mixing it up with anything else. So this project to swallow up the Massachusetts Hospital in other institutions may mean the lamb lying down not with but inside of the lion. However we find the names of Henry L. Houghton, Horace Packard and John P. Sutherland among the trustees, so we wish success to the project and hope for the best.
DR. PETRIE HOYLE writes to point out one or two slips in our presentment of the French Circular printed in our January number. “On p. 17 France (July, 1920) should read France (July, 1930). It makes all the difference a difference of ten years as to the date of the report.” Dr. Hoyle also wishes to point out that in the quotation in our leading article of the same number, p. 2, 1. 4: “do not have to pay the price of the British course” should have been, “have not the money to pay for it after having spent their resources in acquiring a qualification.”.
ACETYL SALICYLIC ACID.
WE have often thought that homoeopaths do not make as much use as they might of the derivatives of the willow. Under the name, “Aspirin,” many of our patients are taking on their own account tablets of Acetyl salicylic acid to relieve their pains and get themselves to sleep. And they would not do this if there were not some definite, immediate result. That it does something else on its own account we may be pretty certain and this provings might show. Here is an experiment a proving of a sort from the allopathic side (B.M.J., February 14th), which may encourage some homoeopaths to try the other kind.
THE PROPHYLACTIC VALUE OF SALICYLATES IN RHEUMATIC MANIFESTATIONS.
C.B. Leech (Journ. Amer. Med. Assoc., September 27th, 1930, p. 932) has endeavoured to provide statistical evidence of the value of salicylates as a preventive of the recurrence of rheumatic disorders. To 67 children with potential heart disease and inactive rheumatic heart disease were given daily 20 grains of acetyl salicylic acid for a period of six months. The control group contained 79 children with similar potential and acquired rheumatic heart lesions. Fewer recurrences of chorea were noted in the experimental than in the control group.
The control children did not do so well as the others in respect of gain in body weight, improvement in the heart rate, general bodily comfort, and actual physical capacity as judged by the functional classification based on ability to carry on normal activities without discomfort. Improvement in comfort seemed to play a part in allowing a more satisfactory gain in body weight. Almost without exception the children with recurrences of chorea lost weight before the recurrence, or only gained slightly.
Apparently a child who gains weight normally is unlikely to develop chorea. Thus, by increasing the physical comfort of the child, and by facilitating gain in weight, the drug appears to reduce the incidence of attacks of chorea. The number of rheumatic recurrences in this series was too small, and the time too short, to allow accumulation of evidence in regard to any possible effect in preventing endocarditis as a sequel of chorea or other rheumatic manifestations. Leech concludes that his analysis shows that there is a definite advantage in giving daily rations of salicylates to children who represent actual or potential instances of rheumatic heart disease.
A VETERINARY CASE.
Mr. SYDNEY H. DAVENPORT of Ainsdale sends us the following experience:.
On December 22nd last my Ostler informed me that the Vet. had given up all hopes of one of two horses (heavy) down with pneumonia, that it had no pulse and its temperature was 107.2. This was at 4 p.m.
I arrived at the stables at 5.15 p.m. and the temperature was then over 109 and the horse in a very bad way indeed.
I administered Aconite O about 15 drops in horn of milk and repeated dose of 10 drops every hour until 8.30 p.m. When I left at that time the temperature had dropped to 107. I left instructions for Aconite O to be administered every hour during the night. The temperature at 9 a.m. on the 23rd was 106.2. Altered the dose to 8 drops every three hours for the day. The temperature rose slightly at night but on the 24th was steady at 106. I therefore administered Bryonia Alba. 1x (6 drops) alternating every hour with Phosphorus 3x (6 drops). There was a steady improvement till the 27th (Saturday).
I received a telephone message late on that night to say the horse was worse and the temperature had risen to 107. Instructed them to use Aconite again till I could get over on the Sunday. Great improvement on the Sunday. Temperature down to 105 and horse feeding well. On following day temperature dropped to 103 and fell steadily each day. Administered Bryonia Alba. and Phosphorus for four days and finished off with a few doses of Sulphur. The horse is now in perfect condition and working well. I am greatly indebted to Dr. F. J. Wheeler of Southport, for his advice and assistance in the treatment of this animal.