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September 15, 1917


JAMA. 1917;LXIX(11):869-873. doi:10.1001/jama.1917.02590380011004

The late Dr. S. Weir Mitchell, in a presidential address to the American Neurological Association a few years ago, suggesting the inclusion of certain practical subjects on the program, said, "I would like to learn from some of you what you are doing for your epileptics." He was addressing specialists in neurology, many of whom, besides treating their own epileptic patients with skill and care, had enriched the world's knowledge of the subject. But had the question been, What does the average physician do for his epileptic patients? I fear the answer would have to be, "Almost nothing." At any rate, in taking histories of epileptics I have only very rarely found that any line of treatment had been effectually carried out.

This, I am sure, is not because physicians in general are ignorant of the disease or of the kind of treatment generally recommended. It is rather because they