Basing his studies on the scientific advances of the last half century and on clinical experience and exact observations, the author attempts to lay down principles for the guidance of the young physician. He divides remedies into four classes: etiologic or nosocratic, organic and functional, symptomatic, and reparative.
In dealing with the action of medicines a most important distinction is made between toxic and utilizable actions, both of which are included by pharmacologists under the term "physiologic." The author defines toxic action as follows: "The action on the organism of any substance which, in a relatively small dose, is capable of producing reactional, material or functional disorders, remarkable by their intensity, duration or gravity, whether these disorders be immediately appreciable or secondary and more or less slow in development." He says, "It is now obvious how far we are from an equation between toxicity and death."
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