Page:Alcohol, a Dangerous and Unnecessary Medicine.djvu/256

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248
ALCOHOL AS A MEDICINE.

tious Diseases Hospital, states that prior to 1885 he had treated 2,148 cases of smallpox "in the usual routine method, with the use of alcohol when the heart's action seemed to indicate it;" resulting in a mortality of 17 per cent. But since 1885 he has treated 700 additional cases under similar circumstances except that the use of alcoholic preparations was entirely omitted, and the resulting mortality was only 11 per cent.

In the same journal, Dr. J. J. Ridge states that he had treated the 200 cases of scarlet fever admitted into the Enfield Isolation Hospital during the years 1892 and 1893, without alcohol in any form, with a mortality of only 2.5 per cent.; while the mortality in the hospitals under the Metropolitan Asylums Board in 1893, in which alcohol was used in accordance with the usual practice in scarlet fever, was 6.3 per cent.

Dr. J. J. Ridge says later :—

"In January, 1894, I published the result of the treatment of the first 200 cases of scarlatina admitted into the temporary wards of the Enfield Isolation Hospital during 1892 and 1893. I stated that there had been five fatal cases, but that one was dying when admitted and only lived a few hours. The mortality was 2 per cent., or 2.5 if the later case is included.

"Since then 300 more cases have been admitted and discharged and among these there have been 7 fatal. Hence there have been 14 deaths in 500 consecutive cases extending over a period of a little more than four years. One of these ought to be excluded, no time having been given for treatment.