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Some very strange conceptions of alcohol as a medicine exist, and are repeated in really excellent textbooks of medicine. Evidently they are the repetitions of assertions of authors which have been accepted without question.
One of these precepts is to increase the amount of spirits if the smaller doses do not seem to have the effect desired.
In a given case one ounce of brandy every four hours is increased to the same amount every two hours. Spirits are said to be indicated and the dose and frequency is the measure of its power.
Recent text-books urge that spirits be given freely in certain cases and prescriptions containing large quantities of spirits are presented as guides. In some cases cautions concerning the dose and its frequency are given, but the fact is assumed that large doses have certain definite effects that can be studied and understood. These counsels are not
CROTHERS TD. SOME NOTES ON ALCOHOL IN THERAPEUTICS. JAMA. 1896;XXVII(10):521–522. doi:10.1001/jama.1896.02430880013002c
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