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It is excellent judgment, before debating the therapeutics of a disease, to inquire into its natural history and ascertain whether there are any instances of its self-limitation and any of its cure by the use of drugs. It is so much the habit of medical men, like hired archers, to rush to the rescue of every man assailed by a disease as if he were having his jugular vein drained by a tiger that, together with the promiscuous shower from slings and bows, and thrusts of the short sword, it is a cause for congratulation if the man escapes instead of his enemy. And it is altogether a matter of conjecture whether his individual prowess might have succeeded in ridding him of the object of attack. So much is this the case that I dare aver we know very little of the real natural history of any but the simpler
WELCH GT. THERAPEUTICS OF PULMONARY PHTHISIS.Read before the Monmouth Co., N. J., Medical Society.. JAMA. 1887;IX(26):804–806. doi:10.1001/jama.1887.02400250004001b
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