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September 8, 1894

" Inebriety."

JAMA. 1894;XXIII(10):398-399. doi:10.1001/jama.1894.02421150032017

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Oran, Scott Co., Mo., September, 1894.

To the Editor:  —Dr. Crothers' articles in the August 18 and 25 numbers of the Journal suggest the following thoughts: Old theories (or facts) are not necessarily false. Because whisky drinking (to excess) has long been considered a vice, time alone would not make this idea false one. Truth does not lose value by age. If drunkenness was ever a vice it is evidently one to-day. The preponderance of evidence is still in favor of the old idea. A few leading physicians believe that drunkenness is a disease. The only cause of this error is the mistake often made of taking the effect for the cause. Excessive drinking is a cause of disease, not a disease per se. Let us theorize a little. I have a patient who is drunk for the first time. I am trying to make a diagnosis. The man is

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