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September 24, 1898


Author Affiliations

Professor of Materia Medica, Therapeutics and Clinical Medicine, University of Minnesota; Secretary and Executive Officer of the Minnesota State Board of Health. MINNEAPOLIS.

JAMA. 1898;XXXI(13):688-690. doi:10.1001/jama.1898.92450130010002b

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My views upon the subject were given under this title in the New York Medical Journal, May 2, 1896. Some points set forth will be emphasized in this paper. The object of study is twofold: first, to train the mind; second, to give the student knowledge that he can make practical use of. In this age of utilitarianism, the first object is often lost sight of. Teachers of medicine and surgery may even speak of the study of materia medica as useless. Their opinion is based upon the fact that the older one is in the practice of his profession the smaller will be his list of therapeutic agents. They argue that a student will pick up the necessary knowledge relating to important drugs, in connection with his clinical studies. This is certainly a mistake. The best therapeutists are men who are thinkers, not machines. The practitioner who uses a therapeutic

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