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July 8, 1893

SOME CONSIDERATIONS BEARING ON THE TREATMENT OF PNEUMONIA.Read before the Section of Practice of Medicine, at the Forty-fourth Annual Meeting of the American Medical Association.

JAMA. 1893;XXI(2):37-39. doi:10.1001/jama.1893.02420540003001a

The conclusion seems forced upon us, by recent investigations as to the comparative mortality in cases of pneumonia, that the death rate from this disease is on the gradual increase, and has been on the increase since 1822.

When we eliminate all elements of uncertainty and unfairness in the comparative statistics of various hospitals and institutions, we are compelled to admit that if the death rate has not actually very materially increased, it has not been reduced by our modern methods of treatment. Those methods of treatment differ very markedly from those in vogue during the first sixty years of this century. The best authorities during that period insisted that in this disease blood letting was "a remedy of indispensable necessity," and they were almost equally unanimous in their use of cathartics, blisters, and occasionally emetics.

Subsequent to 1860 our treatment has been greatly modified, being less active and heroic,