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The statement, so often repeated, that inebriety is the result exclusively of alcohol is not true. Careful studies of individual cases indicate a great variety of complex causes which are unrecognized in most cases. Inebriety is a symptom in many instances, which disappears when certain causes are removed. In certain cases, the ejection of a tapeworm has been followed by total abstinence of the person. The removal of a spicula of bone pressing on a nerve; the trephining of the skull; the operation and removal of a stricture; the curing of hemorrhoids; constipation; diarrhea and many other conditions, have been followed by recovery from inebriety. Conditions of exhaustion, anemia, poisoning from malaria, and degenerations following acute disease, frequently break out in continuous drinking which subside when these states are removed.
It is also true that alcohol, taken any length of time, will produce degenerations which demand its continuous use. A
CROTHERS TD. A STUDY OF THE EFFECTS OF POISONED AIR, IN THE CAUSATION OF INEBRIETY.Read in the Section on State Medicine, at the Forty-fifth Annual Meeting of the American Medical Association, held in San Francisco, June 5-8, 1894.. JAMA. 1894;XXIII(8):291-293. doi:10.1001/jama.1894.02421130001001