The numbers represent the amounts of the various ergot preparations that were required to produce a given degree of cyanosis in a cock's comb. For example: While five parts of Spanish ergot produced the required degree of cyanosis, it took ten parts of Sharpe & Dohme's fluid extract and twenty parts of Parke, Davis & Co.'s fluid extract to produce the same effect.—Ed.
The Propaganda for Reform. JAMA. 1911;LVII(16):1302–1304. doi:10.1001/jama.1911.04260100128028
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