The prevalence of coughs and "colds" in the winter months is sufficient evidence of the importance of this class of agents. Their use in domestic practice—largely as "patent medicines," so called—probably exceeds that directed by the physician as ten to one.Physicians are supplied liberally with literature by manufacturers of proprietary remedies, but the pharmacology of this literature is not always worthy of the faith that some physicians place in it. As an example we quote from a circular distributed exclusively to physicians: "In severe and frequent cough, when little mucus is secreted, as shown by the scanty viscal sputum, morphin, or, better, its derivative, ethyl-morphin, is indicated, which increases secretion and lowers excitability of the respiratory center." For comparison with this interested statement by the manufacturers we quote from the article on opium in Wood's Therapeutics (11th ed., p. 716): "Its tendency to check secretion forbids its use,
THE PHYSICIAN AND THE PHARMACOPEIA.CHAPTER II. JAMA. 1905;XLV(26):1950–1953. doi:10.1001/jama.1905.52510260036002
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