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April 10, 1897


JAMA. 1897;XXVIII(15):709-710. doi:10.1001/jama.1897.02440150039008

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The attempts in certain States to legalize the practice of " osteopathy" have attracted the attention of the Medical Record, which wonders what this new eccentricity of the West means. It fails to recognize an old exploded quackish system, based on one of the many distorted hypotheses of the reflex origin of the disease, known as " bonesetting." This system, starting from the results of massage, claimed that diseases were the results of irritation about bones, which could be relieved by manipulation. Probably coeval with the evolution of medicine from fetichism, it has always maintained itself among the degenerates who constitute most of the devotees of quackery. In the middle of the 18th century it had such a predominance as, like other forms of quackery, to encounter the satiric pen of Hogarth. In his "Company of Undertakers" are three prominent quacks, the most recognizable of whom is Madam Mapp, a famous " bonesetter,"

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