Page:Alcohol, a Dangerous and Unnecessary Medicine.djvu/354

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346
ALCOHOL AS A MEDICINE.

ous to the body, but even such apparently simple agents as liver pills and pills for the relief of constipation may do more harm than good if resorted to frequently. Some of the ingredients used in the pills for the relief of constipation are said to be injurious to the liver.

Dr. Nathan S. Davis, late dean of the Northwestern University Medical School, Chicago, said of the coal-tar remedies, such as phenacetin and antipyrin, in the treatment of influenza and la grippe:— "While each dose temporarily reduces the fever it retards the most important physiological processes on which the living system depends for resisting the effects of toxic agents, namely, oxidation and elimination. This not only encourages the retention of poisonous agents by which fevers are protracted, but it greatly increases the number of cases of pneumonia that complicate la grippe. The bad work that people make in dosing themselves with patent medicines is not infrequently punctuated with a sudden death from overdosing with antipyrin, sulphonal, or some other coal-tar preparation."

Deaths from acetanilid are becoming more and more frequent. The presence of acetanilid in headache powders "guaranteed to be harmless" and thrown upon the door-steps as samples has led many persons into grave danger, and not a few to death. Bromo-Seltzer, Orangeine, Antikamnia, Taylor's Headache Powders, and various other preparations have all contained this drug.

country. The following article is taken from The Banner of Gold, of Feb., 1899 :—