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December 30, 1905


JAMA. 1905;XLV(27):2017-2018. doi:10.1001/jama.1905.02510270023008

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After all the revelations concerning the venality of the trade in patent medicines it was not to be expected that anything worse could be said. It now seems that the first dissections were only preliminary. In the Ladies' Home Journal, January, 1906, are two articles on the subject by Mr. Mark Sullivan that are well calculated to make any decent man or woman shudder and in amazement to ask if human beings in this age are capable of such abject depravity. After this exposure men in the patent medicine trade should hardly expect to associate with any but the criminal classes. We learn that poor suffering deluded women are cajoled into writing their troubles—their most confidential secrets, their sexual relations, their defects in development of bust, and the rest—to the "doctor" of the company under the solemn promise of absolute secrecy. It is then set forth that these letters are

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