The dangers of a premature judgment of the value of a therapeutic method is abundantly proved by the experience of the past few years, and should warn us that excessive optimism may be as harmful as the therapeutic nihilism that was formerly the fashion. Tuberculin, for instance, went up like a rocket and has come down like its stick. The.erysipelas toxins cured many diseases at first, but seem now to have lost much of their efficacy. The Roentgen rays were but yesterday the vaunted and unfailing remedy for all manner of recalcitrant affections; to-day they are a therapeutic agent of increasingly limited applicability, and with disadvantages and dangers to which the many suits for damages from burns are attracting medical attention. Conservatism of statement and a judicious reticence are often more valuable than careless optimism.
It is, therefore, only during the last two or three years that I have said
GOTTHEIL WS. TEN YEARS EXPERIENCE IN THE TREATMENT OF SYPHILIS BY THE INTRAMUSCULAR INJECTION OF INSOLUBLE MERCURIALS.. JAMA. 1907;XLIX(5):365–370. doi:10.1001/jama.1907.25320050003002