|BOOKS ON OLD MEDICAL TREATMENTS AND REMEDIES
HOME PHYSICIAN AND ENCYCLOPEDIA OF MEDICINE The biggy of the late 1800's. Clearly shows the massive inroads in medical science and the treatment of disease.
ALCOHOL AND THE HUMAN BODY In fact alcohol was known to be a poison, and considered quite dangerous. Something modern medicine now agrees with. This was known circa 1907. A very impressive scientific book on the subject.
DISEASES OF THE SKIN is a massive book on skin diseases from 1914. Don't be feint hearted though, it's loaded with photos that I found disturbing.
Part of SAVORY'S COMPENDIUM OF DOMESTIC MEDICINE:
19th CENTURY HEALTH MEDICINES AND DRUGS
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Diabetic gangrene is a term applied to those cases of cutaneous
gangrene which are directly or indirectly due to the presence of diabetes,
of which many examples have been recorded (Kaposi, Rosenblatt, and
Symptoms.—Diabetic gangrene may show itself spontaneously
without previous injury to the affected skin, or it may arise at the seat of
a slight traumatism, or even at the seat of the skin affections, so common
in such subjects.
In those cases arising spontaneously there may be prodromal symp
toms of loss of sensation, neuralgic pain, and coldness of the part, and
sometimes intermittent flushing or lividity of the area. Gradual death
of the integument may ensue, the part first becoming dark colored, or
there is at first the appearance of vesicles or blebs. The destruction may
extend into the subcutaneous tissue, and it also tends to spread laterally.
One, several, or more patches may be present, and in some cases the areas
are arranged somewhat symmetrically.
In other cases of diabetic gangrene starting from traumatism the
part either rapidly goes into a state of gangrene, which may be dry or
moist, but usually the latter, and tends to spread and involve the deeper
tissues; or the traumatism may first be followed by inflammatory action,
which later becomes gangrenous. In this variety those parts liable to
injuries or knocks, such as the legs and hands, are most commonly the
seat of the malady, especially the former.
The patches in diabetic gangrene are rounded, irregular, or even
serpiginous. Constitutional disturbance may or may not be present in
the beginning; symptoms of septic character usually finally supervene.
1 Fordyce and Mewborn (“ A Case of Undetermined Infection of the Skin, Possibly
Glanders”), Jour. Cutan. Dis., 1903, p. 549, and Wende and Bentz, “Infectious Derma
titis Gangrænosa,” ibid., 1906, p. 445, describe 2 cases (1 in each paper, with illustra
tions) of gangrenous infection of the skin, with death following; the cases were some
what suggestive of glanders, but investigations as to this point were negative.
2Kaposi, “Hauterkrankung bei Diabetikern,” Wien. med. Wochenschr., 1884, Nos.
1, 2, 3, and 4; C. W. Allen, Med. News, Oct. 24, 1897. See also paper by Morrow,
“The Cutaneous Manifestations of Diabetes,” Med. Record, April 11, 1896. Other
references will be found under General Etiology.
Etiology and Pathology—Considering the number of cases of
diabetes, diabetic gangrene must be considered extremely rare. Three
factors are doubtless contributory or essential in its production: The
abnormal impregnation of the tissues and blood with sugar, making the
former favorable soil for microbic development; lessened resisting power,
superinduced by the diabetes; and microbic infection, probably taking
place through some break in the continuity of the skin. Gussenbauer1
inclines to the belief that the gangrene is not so much due to the sugar
in the tissues, as to the loss of resisting power and to the bad effects
following infective processes in such individuals. The spontaneous
form is possibly purely trophic in origin, but in these cases an unnoticed
insignificant injury or break in the skin may have preceded. Morrow
states that it mainly occurs in the old and obese, is usually of the moist
type, and that the blood-vessels are found to be pervious. Wallace2
found the arteries in 23 out of 24 cases decidedly atheromatous, the
patients averaging sixty-three years; and that the disease was relatively
more frequent in males.
Prognosis and Treatment.—The disease is a grave complication
or accident in the course of a serious disease, and the outlook is rendered
less favorable. The gangrene is apt to extend, and new areas may arise.
The patient may finally die from septic poisoning. Exceptionally
cases do recover, however, particularly those of spontaneous origin.
The diabetes itself must be carefully treated, both by dietetic and
medicinal means. The gangrenous spots or areas are to be managed
upon general principles, with applications of antiseptics, until the slough
separates; or, better still, as soon as the slough has formed it may be
removed by curetting, if necessary, and the parts treated antiseptically.
Gussenbauer points out that the best plan consists in thorough surgical
removal of the diseased tissue. Wallace believes the best treatment is
removal of the limb early, before sepsis has caused great depression.
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