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November 28, 1925

Alcohol in Medical Practice.

JAMA. 1925;85(22):1750. doi:10.1001/jama.1925.02670220068036

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The author's extensive compilation of statistics on expenditures for liquor in British hospitals shows a marked reduction in the use of wines and spirits in the treatment of patients throughout the empire in every class of hospital. The figures also reveal the capricious way in which alcohol is ordered, some hospitals using but very little, and others taking care of the same class of cases using a considerable amount. These contrasts seem to "point to the fact that much of the prescribing of alcohol is based on caprice, idiosyncrasy and unscientific predilection of the responsible medical staff, rather than on great general principles." The author objects to the use of the word stimulant in connection with alcoholic beverages, because they are narcotics and not stimulants. Especially pernicious does the author consider the use made of alcohol in circulatory diseases and depression, in view of the fact that, excepting for the

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