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editor does to those who appoint him. It will be necessary to find for any organ which this Association may publish an editor of recognized position, whom the Association would accept as its worthy officer and representative in so responsible a post, a man of literary skill, scientific knowledge, and journalistic experience, or, at least, journalistic instincts and tact. He should be paid liberally, he should be treated with respect, and from him ought to be expected a serious determination to use the powers entrusted to him with courtesy and fairness, and with one sole object, the elevation of the standard of professional knowledge and interests, the maintenance of a high order of professional dignity and mutual courtesy. It is impossible to doubt that such a man can be found; possibly there may be many; and the question is one which appears to be well worth y of thorough examination by the council and members of this Association, because it seems tolerably certain that, it for the present bulky, tardy, little read, and unproductive volume of Transactions there could be substituted an active, vigorous weekly journal, read everywhere, and with a large income, such as would naturally come to it from its advertising sheet, there would be in such a change the earnest of a rapid and important growth in the numbers, influence, and usefulness of the American Medical Association.

MINUTES OF THE SECTION

ON

PRACTICE OF MEDICINE, MATERIA MEDICA,

AND PHYSIOLOGY.

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PRACTICE OF MEDICINE, MATERIA MEDICA, AND

PHYSIOLOGY.

TUESDAY, June 1, 1880. The Section on Practice of Medicine, Materia Medica, and Physiology met in the main hall of the building of the Young Men's Christian Association at half past 2 P. M., Dr. Joun S. Lynch, of Maryland, Chairman, Dr. W.C. GLASGOW, of Missouri, Secretary.

After a few preliminary remarks by Dr. Lencu, a paper on The Classification of Remedies was read by Dr. W m. II. Tuomson, of New York.

Dr. ROBERTS BARTHOLOW, of Pennsylvania, spoke of the interest which the paper bad given him, and expressed pleasure at some new points which had been alluded to.

lle saw many olijectious, however, to a classification of medicines by doses, as also to a classification of diseases and symptoms by medicines. He instanced opium as showing the radical difference of effect when given in small and large doses. He also spoke of drugs which, although symptom medicines, sometimes cure disease and even produce changes of structure. Digitalis will cure dilatation of the heart, and opium, when given through a length of time, will produce anæmia and change in blood corpuscles. Advances in knowledge show that the term alterative can no longer be strictly applied in its old meaning.

Dr. BARTHOLOW said he did not think that our knowledge of the action of medicines or of disease was sufficient to enable us to form a correct classification of remedies at present.

Dr. THOMPSON replied, that he thought Dr. BARTHOLOW had misunderstood his meaning. The amount of the close was what would produce certain symptoms in a limited space of time. He takes exception to Dr. BARTHOLOw's assertion that digitalis

VOL. XXXI.-10

will cure dilatation of the heart. He does not believe in permawent good resulting from the use of drugs in this conditionthe dose must be kept up and repeated. In regard to the use of the word alterative, he had used it in its old meaning as familiar to all.

Dr. Mary PUTNAM Jacobi, of New York, was much pleased with the paper, and called attention to the general molecular action of medicines,—that alkaloids acted by diminishing the oxidation of nerve tissue ; thus opinm, for instance, diminishes the activity of the intra-molecular oscillation of atoms; mercury, on the contrary, accelerates this intra-molecular oscillation and favors the breaking up of the albuminous molecules saturated with the specific poison. Small doses of morphine produce only perceptible effects on the molecules of nerve tissue, poisonous doses extend these effects to all the tissues. Thus in opium coma, the elementary respiration is everywhere arrested, oxidation of all tissues deticient, hence the secondary paralysis of the capillaries, which is a prominent feature of opium poisoning. In such a conception of molecular action, we are able to have a comprehensive view of the entire action of the drug; we also have a proof that an influence called “functional” when it is contiued to nerve-centres, becomes structural when with increasing doses it extends beyond them.

Dr. Thomson stated that the anæmia of opium, cited by Dr. BARTHOLOW, was not due to the direct effect of the drug, but to the anorexia which the drug produced. So also of other remedies of this class; they might produce structural changes, but this was not as a direct effect of their use.

Dr. BARTHOLOW moved that the paper of Dr. Thomson be referred to the Committee of Publication, with the request that it be published. Carried.

Dr. MICHAEL O’ILARA, of Pennsylvania, read a paper entitled A Case of Occlusion of One or More of the Cerebral Sinuses.

Dr. P. R. BENNETT, of Ohio, asked how the writer explained the improvement, supposing the case to have been one of intercranial thrombosis.

Dr. O’IIARA would ascribe it to the use of the iodide and ergot.

On motion of Dr. BENNETT, the paper was referred to the Committee of Publication.

The Section adjourned.

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