Recent Literature Indigestion, Biliousness, and Gout in its Protean Aspects . Part I. Indigestion and Biliousness. By J. Milner Fothergill, M. D. New York: D. Appleton & Co. 1881

1881 Boston Medical and Surgical Journal  
periostitis reported within the past few years suggested the possibility that infective material might even be brought into the body without any obvious external wound. The hypothesis that the respiratory and intestinal tracts might serve as channels for absorption under such circumstances had been presented, and was not without evidence in its favor. It did not seem necessary to demand a common local origin for the abscesses in the case reported. Although the condition of the lungs indicated a
more » ... probable embolie affection, it was not equally probable that the mammary abscesses were of like origin. There was no sufficient evidence of a source for arterial embolism, and it seemed highly improbable that emholi of venous origin, of sufficient size to produce such disturbances, could have passed through the capillary plexus of the lungs. The axillary abscesses in turn were directly attributable to the suppuration in the mammae, through the medium of the lymph circulation, and did not demand an embolus as a cause. The case was an exceptional one in many respects, and as one of pyasmia could not be exclusively classified under any one of the sub-divisions usually recognized. Dr. Cheever said that he had seen cases in children which he had supposed to be pyaemia, though not proved by autopsies, caused by fractures and bruises. In these cases no cause of infection could be discovered, and the patients died after some weeks with symptoms of pyasmia. Dr. Cheever also referred to a case reported by Dr. Hodges some years ago, where a boy, while sliding down hill, received a blow on the nates, without any open wound or abrasion, and yet symptoms of pyaemia followed, and death ensued. In none of these cases was there any abscess at the seat of injury. Dr. Cheever supposed it possible that some change from injury to the veins, from the blow, might take place, followed by the formation of thrombi and their subsequent detachment. RecentLiterature. Co. 1881. Pp. xxvii., 500. This is a useful book, and one of a novel design. In brief the object has been to include in one volume the anatomy and physiology of the nervous system, at least so much of these as may be necessary to explain the clinical points depending upon these two departments. There is no complete description of diseases, pathology and treatment and aetiology are either entirely omitted, or only incidentally referred to when thereby the chief object of the book can be promoted. The author says in his preface that " it is not to be expected that many points stated in the physiology, symptomatology, or even in the anatomy will not be open to discussion, and, possibly, to contradiction." This might be said of almost any department of medicine. The question as to what the author has undertaken to do is already answered in part,more in detail,he gives first the anatomy of each portion of the nervous system beginning with the brain. This anatomical review is not exhaustive, that could not be expected, but it is sufficient for understanding the physiological and clinical sections which follow. The account of the functions of the different parts of the braiu is given with reasonable fullness, and is followed by a section upon the surgical bearings of cerebral topography. The part devoted to the brain closes with sections upon the clinical subdivisions of the brain and a summary of the physiology of the cortex, and the effects of disease located in that portion of the cerebrum. This will perhaps sufficiently indicate the plan of the work. The same general plan is followed in regard to the other divisions of the nervous system. There is very little to criticise in the execution of this plan, and the descriptions are reasonably good. Only a few minor errors are to be found, which are not worth mentioning. The illustrations are partly original and partly derived from a variety of sources, and are very important aids to understanding the text. The book is especially valuable as bringing together iu convenient relations facts and inferences which aid greatly in forming correct diagnoses in nervous disease. Co. 1881. Dr. Fothergill has produced a very readable, if not a very original, book on subjects concerning which the last words are very far from having been spoken. Advances in physiology and chemistry necessitate a frequent revision of theories concerning the digestive processes and the causes of mal-assimilation. The present volume, or part first of the subjects embraced by the title-page, offers a chapter on natural digestion; three chapters devoted to primary indigestión ; two chapters on secondary indigestion, under which head in the first are included neurosa!, reflex, cardiac, and toxaemic indigestion, the second considering indigestion as an intercurrent affection ; the next chapter treats of diet and drink ; and the remaining four of the functions of the liver, and the phenomena of liver disturbance with its medicinal and dietetic treatment. The volume closes with an appendix on the failure of the digestive organs at the present time which draws rather a gloomy picture of the future, if in truth there be any for the Anglo-Saxon race on both sides of the Atlantic unless some radical changes ensue in the nourishment and rearing of infants. The author's prophetic eye sees the disembodied spirits of Indian braves gloating over the summer mortality tables of our cities, and dancing a retributive war dance over the graves of the little victims of diarrhocal diseases. Dr. Fothergill's ready pen has served him well in setting forth what he has wished to sa)' about the subjects embraced in his book, and he has shown good judgment in selecting freely and with due acknowledgment from the materials of other writers. The chapter on suitable forms of food owes much to Dr. Win. Roberts, and those on the liver and its disturbances to Dr. Murchison. Lithaemia and the lithic acid diathesis receive attention in these chapters on the liver,
doi:10.1056/nejm188111241052106 fatcat:5h26h2ua7vgkffljrochdq6mmq