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November 9, 1889


JAMA. 1889;XIII(19):673. doi:10.1001/jama.1889.02401150023006

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The present area of medical advance is characterized not only by improvements in surgical appliances, but by numberless additions to the armamentarium of the physician. In our eagerness to try the new, it would seem that some of the cardinal points in drug administration are lost sight of, or at least neglected. From a summary made from many thousands of prescriptions, it would seem that physicians generally pay close attention to dosage, and to physiological action of medicaments in the abstract, but give entirely too little attention to the factors which influence the therapeutic physiological action of drug in a given case, namely, the fugaciousness of action, the term of maximum intensity, the rapidity of absorption and elimination, and the fact that drugs act very differently in varying doses.

It has become a routine practice to give quinine in sthenic fevers, three or four grains at a dose three or

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