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ment that the laceration is what produces the cancer; but those who believe specifically in this, also underestimate the influence of the parasitic theory, and this theory is being investigated very extensively in this country. When you know that this form of cancer is almost entirely confined to women who have suffered traumatism, I should like to know how you can escape the conclusion that traumatism is a predisposition to the disease? I explained what I meant by that, that the diseased condition disturbed nutrition and the proper involution of the uterus; these, cf course, produced a condition of non-resistance. The uterus is not as capable of resisting disease when in such a condition, as when it approaches more nearly a normal state it is more capable of resisting disease, both benign and malignant.
In reply to Dr. Wright's question, I would ask why it is that all men who drink sewerage water do not have typhoid fever? The poison is exactly the same, and they are all human beings; and yet some escape. It is the same with chills and fever. When you have answered that, you will have answered the question he asks.
Most women who have carcinoma of the cervix do have in. juries to the cervix, and a few do not. I think that the few women who do have these injuries and do not have cancer is no argument against the theory of traumatism. To my mind, it only conforms to the relations known in the clinical history of these women.
A New Local Anesthetic Solution.-Frank G. Lydston has used • Medical Record) as a substitute for cocaine in urethrotomy a fresh
10 per cent. solution of antipyrin in a i per cent. carbolic acid solution. The advantages of this combination over cocaine are safety, freedom from constitutional effects, and the inhibition of hemorrhage. The solution should be allowed to remain in the urethra ten minutes as a rule before beginning to cut.
Eclampsia.-F. L. Brigham (American Gynecological and Obstetrical Journal) has had good results in a number of cases from the administration of full doses of veratrum viride and morphine, with chloroform inhalations during the paroxysms.
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DR. ROBERT LEVY,
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accurate Scientific Proof of the effective
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COLLABORATORS: Henry 0. Marcy, M.D., Boston.
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Malpractice In 999 cases out of every thousand a Suits. suit against a surgeon or physician for
malpractice is the misbegotten progeny of an ingrate patient and a “shyster” lawyer (lieyer). In many instances the complainant is either a pauper or a dead-beat, who has received skillful' attention for nothing and now seeks to filch from the pocket of the one who has done him or her good service gratuitously. The lawyer in the case is in most instances some obscure upstart who chafes at the delays of honest progress and is willing to sell his soul to the devil for the paltry rewards of a cheap notoriety. In the nature of things surgeons are more exposed to the attacks of these vultures than are general practitioners, though physicians, especially obstetricians, are hy no means exempt.
Aside from the enormous expense of a malpractice suit, the contemptible injustice of the great majority of such actions must rankle bitterly in the minds of the victims. As exemplified in a recent case tried in this city, the results of treatment may be the very best obtainable and far superior to the average, yet the surgeon
is sued nevertheless. It is becoming more danger
ous sometimes for the surgeon who treats a fracture than for the individual who has suffered the accident. Some years, perhaps, after service has been rendered, the perverted patient may conclude to "hold up" his former attendant, and ergo a malpractice suit is forthwith under way.
It is an unfortunate fact that in the medical profession are to be found a few unprincipled ignoramuses, full of assurance and vindictiveness, who for their own malicious ends encourage malpractice suits against reputable practitioners and even give their asinine testimony ex cathedra, as it were, for the complainant and the gaping public. Such reptiles should be crushed with the heel of righteous scorn.
The important question is, of course, what are we to do about the matter of malpractice suits? There is no telling whose turn it will be next, and the problem is a very difficult one to solve, particularly as the nature of these suits is so irrational and senseless. If it were possible to place the facts before the judge alone to decide, nearly all these suits would be thrown out at once, with little trouble or expense to the defendant. But the law requires a jury trial if either party in the suit demands it, and the average juror is chosen rather for his ignorance than for his wit. Moreover, there is a class of professional jurors, so to speak, and some of these, it is claimed, are readily purchasable at a very moderate price.
Another way to ward off possible malpractice suits, which we have read has been employed, would be to require each surgical patient before anything was done for him to sign a contract or release absolving the surgeon from any liability as to results, whether good or bad. It is evident that such a document would need to be very carefully framed in order to be unequivocally binding and legal.
At present, however, probably the most practicable method of combating this monstrous evil is in the establishment of a fund by regular membership sub