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the operation. Full particulars of the case will shortly be given at the Medical and Chirurgical Society. Lond. Med. Gaz.
Fatal Effects of Ether Vapour on Animals.-M. Gruby found, in his experiments on ether-vapour, that dogs twenty days old lost their sensibility in from eighteen to twenty minutes. Grown-up dogs lost the power of sensation in eight minutes, and died if the action of the ether was continued for forty-five minutes. The dogs recovered their sensibility and motion when they were exposed to the air, if the experiment with the ether was not prolonged beyond eighteen minutes for the young, and forty to forty-four minutes for the adults. Young dogs, which had ceased to breathe, were brought to life by copious bleeding from the jugular vein.-Ibid.
Medical Controversies.-Dr. Cheyne remarks, in reference to a work which he wrote against a treatise by M. De Moivre, that, " being written in a spirit of levity and resentment, I most sincerely retract and wish undone, so far as it is personal or peevish, and ask him and the world pardon for it, as I do for the defence of Dr. Pitcairn's Dissertation on Fevers against the late learned and ingenious Dr. Oliphant. I heartily condemn and detest all personal reflections, all malicious and unmanly terms, and all false and unjust representations, as unbecoming gentlemen scholars and Christians, and disapprove and undo both performances, as far as in me lies, in every. thing that does not strictly and barely relate to the argument."-Life of Dr. Cheyne.
Many modern controversialists of the medical profession might profit by the example of this candid old physician of the seventeenth century. Nothing can more strikingly show the absurdity of indulging in violent controversies on medical subjects, than the utter indifference of another generation to them, and the complete oblivion into which they sink in a course of a few years. But medical writers are of an irritabile genus; and it is a rarity to meet with such an example of candour and good feeling as that shown by Dr. Cheyne.- Lond. Med. Gaz.
Fever in Ireland.-Fever is rapidly extending its ravages even in Dublin. The Cork-Street Hospital, one of the largest establishments of its kind in Ireland, is literally crammed with patients, to such a degree of inconvenience, indeed, that the governors have given directions to have temporary buildings—if sheds or tents can be so called-prepared for the reception of numerous patients for whom there is no accommodation within doors. The state of the Meath and Richmond Hospitals is equally deplorable, and the accounts from all parts of the country represent disease and destitution proceeding at an equal pace.-Ibid, from Times.
Honours Conferred on Medical Men.
The Queen of Spain has created Professor Orfila a Knight of the order of Charles Ill. Her VOL. X.
Majesty has also made him a dignitary of Spain by a special ordinance. These honours have been conferred on the eminent French Professor in consequence of his having completely remodelled the medical institutions of Madrid. In this reform, Orfila appears to have accomplished a miracle ; for he has actually succeeded in satisfying all branches of the profession! When we have another medical reform bill under discsusion, it would be desirable to secure his services for Great Britain.
Don Pedro Castello, chief physician of Isabella II. has also been made a Knight of the Order of 'Charles III. and has had conferred on him the title of Marquis of Health (de la Salud.) As our French contemporary remarks, this must be a great recommendation to patients, but it is only reasonable to expect that the Esculapian anarquis himself will henceforth be free from all attacks of sickness! The creation of this extraordinary title is in accordance with a strange practice prevalent in Spain, of fixing upon some quality or virtue in raising to the peerage an individual who may have no territorial possessions. Hence, among non-professionals, we find Dukes of Fidelity and Victory; and for the first time, we believe, among professional men, we have the creation of a Sanitary Marquisate!
Don Pedro Maria Rubio, another eminent Spanish physician, has been created a Knight of the Royal American Order of Isabella the Catholic. lbid.
Secret of Success in Medical Practice.-Skill and art alone are not sufficient. He (a medical practitioner) must be particularly mindful of his conduct. It is this which recoinmends him to the public, and creates confidence ; for as the generality of people are incompetent to pronounce on his science, it is natural for them
to take the measure of his ability from the measure of his conduct. By force of conduct alone, a physician, of very moderate talents, may become the favourite of the public; and without it, the most skilful professional man remain unnoticed and unappreciated.-Lond. Med. Gaz. from Hufeland.
Funeral of Professor Tommasini.- The funeral of the late Prof. Tommasini is said to have taken place recently at Parma with imposing splendour. The whole of the court, and more than three hundred families of distinction, were present at the ceremony. The members of the various medical faculties, and all the dignitaries in the army and in the state, were among the followers. The leaden coffin was borne to the church of the Campo Santo by the students of the Faculty of Medicine. The funeral took place at night, and as the procession passed through the streets, the front of each house was illuminated by torches, the last testimony of the sorrowful respect and gratitude of a nation.-Ibid, from Gaz. Med.
Adipocire.-By the courtesy of our friend Dr. Blakeman, of Bleecker street, we were invited, a few days since, in company with
Drs. Miner, Senr., J. K. Rodgers, A. C. Post, Linsley, F. C. Stewart, Borrowe, Williams, Rockwell, A. E. Hosack, &c., to inspect the body of a Mrs. F., which had been disinterred from a burying ground in Twelfth street, in which it had lain for 17 years. It was that of a very large woman. The coffin in which it had been enclosed was very little affected by its inhumation. The form of the cadaver was perfectly preserved. The extremity of the nose was gone, and the features of the face partially discernible. The arms, which were placed along the sides, had become much compressed by the swelling of the body, and the hands had broken off at the wrists. The remains of one hand, upon the right side of the abdomen, were distinctly visible, and the forefinger, with its nail, was entire. The rotundity of the breast was perfect-the abdomen flattened, as if by compression against the lid of the coffin. The left foot, like the hands, had separated from the ankle. The rotundity and shape of the thighs was remarkably preserved. The shroud adhered to the body and was not decayed, though discoloured. The cadaver presented a greenish hue from mould, with which it was covered, and a fresher coat of pure white, had been deposited upon it since its exposure to the air. The cap was distinct upon the head, and the bow of black ribbon on one side, somewhat faded, remained. By the consent of a son of the de. ceased, who was in possession of the body, a piece about a foot square was cut out of the abdomina! walls, by Dr. Post, so as to expose the cavity. The knife passed easily through their substance, which was found to consist entirely of a yellowish cheesy substance. The thin layer of abdominal muscles could be discriminated, similarly converted beneath the adipose layer, which was very thick. The inner surface of the abdominal cavity was smooth. The viscera and a large lump of adipocire, lay at the bottom. The diaphragm was distinctly seen. Below it, and towards the left, much shrunken and condensed, and having the consistence, somewhat, of lung, lay the liver. The stomach, having its natural form and a macerated appearance, was distinctly visible, and some portions of the colon, collapsed and membranous, were discoverable. This was all that could be seen within the abdominal cavity through the aperture that was made. The exsected piece of abdominal wall was then replaced. An odour closely resembling that of gum ammoniac, exhaled from the body. We learn that the soil in which the coffin was interred, was sandy, and not moist; and that two bodies of children buried over it, and others in the vicinity, were in a state of complete disorganization. Some finger-bones, lying loose in the coffin, were taken up, and found so inuch softened as to be cut easily, but not altered in form. The shavings which the coffin contained, were blackened, but otherwise unaltered. The subject was 69 years of age, very,fat, and weighed 170 pounds. The disease of which she died has escaped our recollection. The conversion of the human body into adipocire, though rare among us, has been not unfrequently met with. A body in this state of preservation was exhibited some time ago, at one of our public museums, coming, we believe, from Canada.-N. Y. Annalist.
Sick and Disabled Seamen. One of the late Congressional documents comprises a letter from Dr. Ruschenberger, Surgeon to the U. S. Naval Hospital in New York, to a member of Congress, relative to the expenses of the Marine and Naval Hospitals. From it we make the following quotations respecting these important institutions.
" By an act approved July 16th, 1798, a tax of twenty cents monthly was levied on the pay or wages of all seafaring people; and, in consideration of the payment of this tax, collectors of ports are directed in the same act to provide for the temporary relief and maintainance of the sick or disabled seamen in hospitals.' Under this law all seafaring people who pay this tax, or hospital money,' are entitled to the relief specified or intended.
“ The rate of the tax thus levied is very heavy, as may be seen by comparing it with the amount of seamen's resources. For example, in the
navy the total pay and emolument of a seaman are, annually, $144, and rations $73 ; equal to $217. From this sum he pays yearly $2 40, or more than one per cent, (1.10) on his total income. This is not an income tax, nor a property tax, but a tax upon the liability to misfortune of a class whose pursuit is eminently perilous to healih and life.
“ An act approved March 2d, 1799, levied the same amount of tax (to be applied in the same way) on persons serving in the navy. Officers, seamen and marines under this act were entitled to the same advantage as sailors in the merchant service. The fund resulting , under the operation of these two acts constituted the marine hospital fund.'
" By an act approved February 26th, 1811, the moneys, or tax collected from persons serving in the navy, were separated from the marine hospital fund, and constituted a fund under the tile of navy hospital fund.' As no person in the navy had derived any advantage from the marine hospital fund between the years 1799 and 1811; and as it was fairly shown that the navy had paid at least $50,000 into it, this sum was taken from the marine hospital fund and paid over as the foundation of the navy hospital fund. By the act of 1811 the Secretary of the Navy, the Secretary of War, and the Secretary of the Treasury, were constituted commissioners of this fund; bat, by an act approved July 10th, 1832, the Secretary of the Navy became the sole commissioner.
"The act of 1811 provides not only for the temporary, but also for the permanent relief of the sick and disabled officers, seamen and marines; and under its authority the naval asylumn at Philadelphia was erected."
“ From public documents I learn that the aggregate of hospital money collected from the merchant service for the year 1842 was $72,429 32, and the expenditure for the same year was $93,531 68; that the expense of sick and disabled seamen in the merchant service exceeded the receipts $21,102 36 for the year 1842, and for the half year ending June, 1843, the expenditure exceeded the receipts $9,129 77. Last year $25,000 were appropriated by Congress to
meet the deficit of the marine hospital fund ; and unless some means be devised to prevent this annual deficit, it will probably increase from year to year.'
Dr. R. suggests several modes of reducing the expenditures of the marine hospital fund, and also of increasing the receipts of the navy hospital fund, but we believe no action was had by Congress on the subject.-Boston Med. and Sur. Jour.
Medical Appointment in the Regular Army of the United States. To persons desirous of entering the medical staff of the regular army, the following information from a responsible source will be acceptable :
It is prescribed by law that “no person shall receive the appointment of assistant surgeon in the army of the United States unless he shall have been examined and approved by an army medical board, to consist of not less than three surgeons or assistant surgeons, who shall be designated for that purpose by the Secretary of War.”
Applications for perinission to be examined for the appointment of assistant surgeon must be addressed to the Secretary of War; must state age and residence of the applicant; and must be accompanied by respectable testimonials of his possessing the moral and physical qualifications requisite for filling creditably the responsible station, and for performing ably the arduous and active duties of an officer of the medical staff. These proving satisfactory, invitations are accordingly sent to the applicants.
The medical board of examiners rigidly scrutinizes the pretensions of each candidate, taking into consideration his physical qualifications and moral habits, as well as his professional acquirements; and reports favourably upon no case admitting of a reasonable doubt, as the health and lives of the officers and soldiers are objects too important to be committed to ignorant and incompetent hands.
Section 8 of the army bill, approved February 11, 1847, authorizes the appointment of “two additional surgeons and twelve additional assistant surgeons in the regular army of the United States." After the promotion of two assistant surgeons to the advanced grade of surgeon, and the appointment of the candidates who were examined and sound qualified by the last medical board, there will still remain nine appointments of assistant surgeons to be made under the provisions of the section just quoted.
An army medical board has accordingly been ordered to convene in the city of New York on the 15th of this month (March,) for the examination of such candidates as may be authorized by the Secretary of War to present themselves. Applicants from a distance are notified that, as the board will probably be in session for a month, they will be in time if they present themselves three weeks after the board shall assemble.-Nai. Intel.
Theatrical Performances at the New York State Lunatic Asylum. By D. Tildey Brown, M. D., 2d Assistant Physician.-Among the