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March 21, 1896


JAMA. 1896;XXVI(12):584-585. doi:10.1001/jama.1896.02430640036004

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The Transactions of the American Ophthalmologic Society, containing the reports of its 1895 meeting, prints thirty-five papers contributed by members of the society. Of these thirty-five papers by Americans, be it noted, but two relate to refraction, and two to anomalies of muscle balance. Concerning the latter, one considers only an old cutting operation, and the second contends that strychnin has a peculiar and selective tonic action upon the internal rectus muscle! All of which, it strikes us, is irresistibly funny.

Ophthalmology has been long vaunted as the model of the specialties of medicine, the first branch of genuine medical science to arise, and serve as an example for all the rest of us. If so, we can but repeat the homely old saw, " Soon ripe, soon rotten." For surely the work of the representative American society in this department of medicine is the veriest travesty of medical progress—almost, one

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