March 10, 1888


JAMA. 1888;X(10):316. doi:10.1001/jama.1888.02400360032012

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Dear Sir  :—The Journal of January 21 contained an editorial comment on the use of "Nitrites in Asthma, " as observed by Professor Fraser, of Edinburgh, wherein it was stated that the nitrite of amyl, formerly given by inhalation, produced the same effect with much longer continuation when given by the stomach.At that time I had a patient with Bright's disease, who suffered most agonizing paroxysms of dyspnœa —they were simply terrific, notwithstanding the use of ordinary measures. There was no asthma whatever. On the recurrence of an attack, after reading the editorial, I gave 3 drops of nitrite of amyl in a teaspoonful of brandy without expecting much result, but simply as a dernier ressort. The result was simply miraculous! It was almost instantaneous. From a sense of impending suffocation the patient began to breathe perfectly freely in less than five minutes. This relief lasted for upwards of

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