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Sources: Hydriatic Treatment Of Scarlet Fever In Its Different Forms

In 1845-46 there was an epidemic in Dresden, a city of 100,000

inhabitants, where I then resided. Its ravages in the city and the

densely peopled country around it, were dreadful. We had excellent

physicians of different schools, who exerted themselves day and night to

stop the progress of extermination, but all was in vain. Dying children

and weeping mothers were found in some house of every street, and

whenever you e
tered a dry-goods store, you were sure to find people

buying mourning. At last, as poverty will frequently produce dispute

and quarrel in families, there arose, from similar reasons, a dispute

between the different sects of physicians in the papers, which became

more and more animated and venomous, without having any beneficial

influence upon the dying patients. Sad with the result of the efforts,

and disgusted with the quarrel of the profession, I gathered facts of my

own and other hydriatic physicians' practice, by which it was shown that

I alone, in upwards of one hundred cases of scarlatina, I had treated,

had not lost a patient, and that, in general, not a case of death of

scarlet-fever treated hydriatically was on record. These facts, with

some observations about the merits of the respective modes of treatment,

I published in the same papers, offering to give the list of the

patients, I had treated, and to teach my treatment, gratis, to any

physician who would give himself the trouble of calling.--What do you

think was the result of my communication and offer?

The quarrel in the papers was stopped at once; not a line was published

more; no one attempted to contradict me or to show that I had lost

patients also; all was dead silence; and of the one hundred and fifty

physicians of the city, _one_ called, and, not finding me at home, never

returned. And the patients? Well, the patients were treated and

killed--after the occurrence I thought I had the right to use the

word--as before, and the practice was continued in every epidemy


Perhaps my communications would have had a better result in America,

where physicians, though much less learned upon an average, are more

accessible to new ideas?--

I have tried, several years ago, to have an article on the subject

inserted in one or two of the New-York papers, which have the largest

circulation in the country, but, although there were at the time 150

deaths of scarlet-fever per week in the city, they had so much to say

about slavery and temperance that there was no room for my article, and

when I published it in the Water-Cure Journal, it was, of course,

scarcely noticed.--Scarlet-patients have continued to be treated and to

die as before, and when I published a couple of months ago an extract

from this pamphlet in the Boston Medical World, there were thirty cases

of death per week from scarlatina in that city.

These are facts, upon which you may make your own comments. But the

following are facts also: