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Article
November 2, 1912

Nostrums and the Medical Profession—A Criticism from a Layman

JAMA. 1912;LIX(18):1640-1641. doi:10.1001/jama.1912.04270110054023

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Abstract

To the Editor:  —Permit me to call to your attention a disheartening instance of the average medical practitioner's laissez-faire attitude toward the "patent-medicine" evil. A year ago the Wisconsin State Journal of Madison, Wis., was purchased by Mr. Richard Lloyd Jones, who, on assuming control, decided to rid the publication of all fraudulent advertising, beginning with the fake medicines. At his request I listed those nostrums which, under a moderate interpretation of fair dealing with the public, I thought should be excluded. These he threw out, declaring his intention of keeping the paper free, in the future, from such matter.What was my surprise, on visiting Madison recently, to find in the pages of the Journal several typically quack advertisements, including that of Duffy's Malt Whisky. Naturally I asked Mr. Jones the reason for his apparent backsliding."No backsliding at all," saidhe, "I accepted that advertisement on professional medical advice."

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