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February 26, 1916


Author Affiliations

Dalton Professor of Physiology, Columbia University, College of Physicians and Surgeons NEW YORK

JAMA. 1916;LXVI(9):639-641. doi:10.1001/jama.1916.02580350027009

It must, I think, be conceded that the average general practitioner of medicine knows far too little of the science of physiology, and has not the habit of looking at his patients from the physiologic point of view. He sees the normal man or woman hardly more than does the layman. The bodily condition that is before him in his professional life is a derangement, and it is the derangement that he has been taught to focus his interest on. When, too, he thinks of a deranged organ, it is the anatomic picture of it that is foremost in his mind, and not the deranged function. But his problem is really one of dynamics, not of statics, and the thought that should always be paramount, I contend, is that he is dealing with a derangement of a physiologic mechanism—a machine of inconceivable complexity has got out of order and it

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