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February 1934

Strophanthin Therapy: Also Comments on the Quantitative Administration of Digitalis According to Pharmacologic Principles.

Arch Intern Med (Chic). 1934;53(2):321. doi:10.1001/archinte.1934.00160080158008

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This monograph is amazingly complete in detail and is presented in a meticulously orderly and systematic manner. While the reader is at times burdened by detail, the work as a whole is very interesting.

The authors introduce the subject in a fascinating manner by relating the history of strophanthus. It was first introduced and grown in western Europe in 1800 by the French botanist, Descandolle. The interesting episode of Kirk's accidental discovery of its cardiac action while on Livingstone's expedition in Zambesia is told. The botanic facts regarding the plant are described in considerable detail, as are also the pharmacology and chemistry of strophanthin.

Every conceivable phase of the subject is considered, with emphasis on the indications, contraindications, methods of administration and results. After reading this monograph, one is led to wonder whether American physicians have accorded strophanthin proper recognition as a valuable cardiac drug.

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