A great scientist said, "The last thing a deep sea fish would discover is water," an apothem which pointedly expresses the idea that we must transcend our most intimate contacts before we can comprehend them. This is literally true in the history of science, for scientific study of the heavens and the earth long preceded scientific study of the air, and only the most recent studies in medicine have been concerned about the medium in which we live and our adjustments to it. Respiration is such a nicely directed function and our respiratory need is so exquisitely balanced with our breathing mechanism that, until recent years, physicians were contented with the observation that there was a disturbed relation between these two factors, but analysis of the disturbance seemed superfluous, because the phenomenon was too obvious.
Now that chemical research has revealed so much concerning respiration, clinicians should aspire from objective
HOOVER CF. THE BEDSIDE STUDY OF AIR HUNGER. JAMA. 1926;87(11):813–816. doi:10.1001/jama.1926.02680110013004