October 1997

Society TransactionsBRITISH MEDICAL ASSOCIATION. Report of Transactions in the Dermatological Section. Montreal, August 31st to September 3D

Arch Dermatol. 1997;133(10):1206. doi:10.1001/archderm.1997.03890460018002

Non-Surgical Treatment of Boils, Carbuncles, and Felons was presented by Dr. L. D. Bulkley (New York). The reader advocated the avoidance of the knife as well as poultices. He would treat the underlying general condition which was in most instances in some way deranged. Subjects of these conditions are never in good health, and overwork, worry, etc., may usually be found. Treatment consisted in a mercurial purge, followed by Startin's mixture and the sulphite of calcium. It is most important that a good article of the latter drug be obtained, that the pills be made freshly, gelatin-coated, and given in a dose of one-quarter grain every two hours. Externally, he employed carbolic acid, ergot, zinc, and starch in form of ointment. Felons are to be treated by internal and general means, and the application of Hebra's diachylon ointment, which prevents the necessity of resorting to the knife, resolution taking place, or the pus reaching the surface.

The Chairman, Mr.MORRIS, took issue with the reader, and disagreed with nine-tenths of all he had said. He avoided drugs unless there was a clear indication for their use. In carbuncle he favored scraping out under anesthesia and thus securing in a few hours the rest and benefit which many weeks of applications would require. He was surprised that so much of medieval medicine had survived. The school which Dr. Bulkley represented was dying—but dying hard.

J Cutan Genito-Urin Dis. October 1897;15:473.