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February 12, 1949

Magic in a Bottle

JAMA. 1949;139(7):494. doi:10.1001/jama.1949.02900240072040

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This second edition of Dr. Silverman's "Magic in a Bottle," first published in 1941, is an up-to-date version of his previous successful book. The author has achieved a style which is sufficiently vivid and entertaining to be readable without yielding to the pitfalls of sensationalism which have characterized some types of writing based on medical progress and the achievements in the field of research. Dr. Silverman has chosen for his subjects the story of morphine, quinine, digitalis, cocaine, the "magic bullets," acetylsalicylic acid, the barbiturates, the vitamins, the hormones, the sulfonamide drugs, the antibiotics, the drugs against epilepsy and the subject of atomic medicine. One wonders why allergy and the antihistaminics, which are just as amazing stories as those he has chosen to tell, have been omitted. This is a pleasantly readable book which should help to improve public understanding of research problems and procedures.

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