definition for syphilis, as given by the modem text-books, is that it is a
specific disease caused by the Spirochaeta pallida, and that it is
developed by infection. That is when it is acquired, or derived by
hereditary transmission--congenital syphilis.
Etiology.--This is a disease
which the medical world feels that it knows all about. Indeed, laymen
generally think they know positively that syphilis is a specific disease.
It would require volumes to hold the literature that has grown up around
this subject. The popular idea is that syphilis starts with an inoculation
or infection incurred by cohabiting with a person who has the disease, and
that, when it is once started, the ending is doubtful, notwithstanding the
fact that the medical profession has discovered many specific remedies.
The regular profession is quite positive that there is no such thing as a
specific remedy for a specific disease. The idea of specifics has been
denounced by the best-educated physicians throughout modern times. But
this one disease has been associated with mercury, arsenic, and iodide of
potassium as specific remedies. In the last decade a remedy has been
discovered that is recognized as more specific than the old remedies; yet,
in spite of this new synthetic remedy of specific fame, the old remedies
are still in use. Indeed, in institutions where the disease is treated the
synthetic remedy commonly known as "606" is used, and at the same time
mercury, arsenic, and iodide of potassium are given--probably on the
principle that, if one should fail, the other may be the thing needed.
This simply shows that, in spite of the so-called specific remedies, the
medical mind is not yet ready to accept the fact that there is a specific.
Syphilis, like everything that has a
bad reputation, must be the scapegoat for every smaller or minor
disreputable thing of its class. If people of pronounced diathesis, and
who live in such a way as to create derangements of all
kinds--derangements of the blood, nervous system, glandular system, and
circulatory system--consult a modern physician, there is a strong
probability that most of these symptoms will be charged to syphilis. So
cocksure is the profession that this is true that it will not even believe
in the negative findings of a Wassermann test, notwithstanding it has as
much faith in this test as it has in syphilis itself.
To see a physician struggle with all
his might and main to force a blood-test to show a positive reaction is
pathetic, to say the least. I have many patients coming to me during the
year, from different parts of the world, bringing written examinations and
reports showing the results of many examinations; and if there should be
nine negative examinations and one positive, that one is sufficient to
settle the question that the patient has syphilis. Occasionally I have
patients who have been treated for syphillis, and whom the physicians have
positively declared to have syphilis, despite the fact that several
Wassermann tests have shown a negative reaction. The fact of the matter is
that the mind of the medical profession is positively settled on this
subject, and that there is no hope of anything contrary to the general
belief receiving any attention whatever.
As I am not at all in sympathy with
any part of the medical history of syphilis, or the present general
beliefs, I shall recommend those who want to know what the popular
opinions are on this subject to consult the leading text-books; for I have
no desire or inclination to write from that standpoint. Hence, what I have
to say in the following pages will be strictly my individual opinion, with
no apologies for differing with the whole world, if I do. I can very well
afford to stand alone, when I stand with as clear a conscience in the
matter as I do, and have as fine a list of cured subjects as I have.
Symptoms.--The disease begins
with a very small denuded surface. This may look like a speck of herpes;
and, indeed, that may be, and probably is, the initial stage in many
cases. After that, from this small denuded spot it will spread. There is a
hypersecretion about the foreskin or glans. If watched carefully, the
parts will be seen to be quite moist; they should be looked at every three
hours, and the secretions removed. In a day or two the spot begins to be a
defined ulcer in shape. If not treated properly, the ulcer grows quite
rapidly, swelling of the prepuce takes place, and a sensitive and swollen
condition of the glands in the groin appears. The lymphatics in the groins
take on enlargement. If the treatment is of an irritative character, such
as cauterizing or cleaning with peroxide of hydrogen, the parts become
quite sensitive, and the ulcer spreads with a thickened, indurated border.
If taken hold of by the fingers, there will be a sensation of hardness.
The thickened and indurated parts will present a ring of hardness standing
all around the ulcer. If the patient has quite an acid condition, shown in
a white tongue--one that is broad, pallid, and with prints of the teeth on
the edges--and if the case is treated with local applications of mercury,
the ulceration will take on a very active growth, because of the local
poisoning caused by the mercury coming in contact with the acid secretion.
Treatment.--In the beginning
of the treatment, Dr. Osler says in his work on practice--
That the later stages which come under the charge of the physician are
so common, results, in great part, from the carelessness of the patient,
who, wearied with treatment, cannot understand why he should continue to
take medicine after all the symptoms have disappeared; but, in part, the
profession also is to blame for not insisting more urgently that acquired
syphilis is not cured in a few months, but takes at least three years,
during which time the patient should be under careful supervision.
Knowing, as I do, that syphilis is as
easily cured as any infection--knowing, as I do, that without
gastrointestinal decomposition, no disease, not even syphilis, can put up
a winning fight against real health and normal elimination--I am surprised
at what the leading English teacher of medicine has to say on the subject.
On the treatment of syphilis is where
I part company with modern medical science. I have been in the profession
many years; I have treated many cases of syphilis; and, where I have been
favored with an early call, about two to four months is as long as I have
ever kept a case under my supervision. No wonder there is a universal
taint, when a patient is kept under treatment for three years! He will
certainly have a medicine disease built in that time which probably will
last for the remainder of his life. Every symptom developed during those
three years will be attributed to the disease, when, in reality, it comes
from a ridiculous manner of living on the part of the patient and the
drugs be has been given.
The chancre should be treated the
same as any ulcer. It must be kept clean. What I mean by keeping the
chancre clean is that it should be washed with a very mild soap two or
three times a day, and rinsed with warm soda water--a heaping teaspoonful
of the soda to a pint of warm water. The parts should be bathed thoroughly
with this alkaline water, so as to remove any soap. Then a little white
vaseline may be used, and a light dressing of cotton, retained by a
T-bandage. Under no circumstances should a dressing be put on that is
retained by a cord, or, what is worse, a rubber band. Anything that
constricts the organ will cause a puffiness in the foreskin. The more the
circulation is interfered with, the slower the ulceration will be in
getting well, and the more absorption and systemic infection will take
place. If the primary disease is taken care of in a sensible, rational
way, it will heal just the same as any ordinary sore; and if this can be
carried through, and at the same time the inguinal glands prevented from
becoming involved, there will be no constitutional derangement to be
The general care of the patient
should be the same as would be given to overcome or prevent the spread of
any disease; namely, a five-to-ten-minute warm bath, followed with a cold
sponge-bath; and the cold sponge-bath should be followed with ten minutes'
dry towel-rubbing before retiring. If the bathroom is warm of a morning,
the bath should be taken at that time, and a dry rubbing given at night.
Until the disease is thoroughly under
control, the patient should have nothing at all to eat except
fruit--fresh, uncooked fruit morning, noon, and night, and at no other
time. Water should not be taken. It is a mistake to drink freely of water;
for the kidneys are forced to do vicarious work for the bowels, and this
leaves the bowels constipated, causing infection.
The bowels should be moved every day.
If the bowels do not move during the day, before retiring a small enema--a
pint of water--may be put into the rectum and held for five minutes, and
then a movement solicited.
The above treatment is so simple and
so effective that it is hard for some patients, and many doctors, to
believe that it can be trusted.
Sometimes I am not consulted until
the ulceration is very great and the glandular involvement is pronounced.
This means that infection has taken place, Now the question is, what kind
of infection has taken place? Septic infection. I insist that syphilis is
nothing more nor less than a badly treated septic infection, coming from
maltreatment of a common ulcer. We do not believe in the doctrine that,
unless patients are fed, the disease will master them; indeed, we know
positively that feeding patients only feeds disease. The chancre or ulcer
should be taken care of, it matters not how large it is, just as an
ordinary ulcer would be managed. There is nothing in specific medication.
The fact of the matter is that nature is fully capable of throwing off any
and all diseases, if they have not advanced to such organic destruction
that there can be no hope; and if nature cannot effect a cure--if nature
cannot throw off disease--it will be because she is prevented by treatment
Those who would have no further
symptoms, no nervous diseases--tabes, or any of the diseases said to be
due to syphillis--twenty-five to fifty years after, should live correctly.
is a septic infection of the mucous membrane of the urethra. I have some
views that are not strictly orthodox in regard to this disease as well as
to syphilis; and all I have to offer as proof that my particular views are
well founded is that my plan of treatment works, and works better than any
other plan of treatment of which I know. If my ideas are wrong in regard
to the cause of syphilis and gonorrhea, or any other disease, I want
someone to prove to me that I am wrong, by producing a treatment that is
as good as mine, or better.
Etiology.--It is generally
understood that this disease is caused by a germ, gonococcus. As I have
stated all specific infections are at the base septic or toxic. Septic
inflammation of the urethra is accompanied by the gonococcus. A septic
inflammation of Peyer's glands in the bowels develops a typhoid fever, and
the character of the septic material is that it is accompanied by the
typhoid bacillus. A septic inflammation in the lungs is accompanied by the
tuberculous bacillus; etc. etc. The stock-in-trade toxin that accompanies
all suppurative inflammations is septic. The location of the disease in
the body determines the character of the germ that is found in the
necrosed or broken-down tissues and in the excretion and it will never be
found in the early stages of any disease.
with a feeling of uneasiness at the meatus, or the mouth of the urethra;
perhaps a feeling of itching--just enough to call the attention of the
patient to it; and perhaps, on examination, he finds a little discharge.
Certainly by the next day the disease will have developed to such an
extent that there will be no question about its existence; for, on getting
up in the morning, there will be a feeling of discomfort, and, on
examination, there will be quite a copious discharge. The patient
experiences considerable discomfort in urinating, such as burning or
smarting. This discomfort seemingly grows worse every time urine is
passed, until the patient is very uncomfortable. Much, however, depends
upon the constitutional state of the patient. If he has been living in
such a way as to cause a decidedly acid urine, then the smarting, burning,
and discomfort in urinating will be more pronounced.
Some cases develop an edematous state
of the prepuce or foreskin. It sometimes swells to such an extent that the
glans is completely covered, making it very difficult to keep the parts
clean. This complication, however, is unnecessary; it is brought about by
maltreatment. Any irritating treatment aggravates the symptoms and causes
what would be a very light inflammation to develop into a very intense
inflammation. Where the swelling is very great, sometimes the circulation
is so cut off that there is danger of gangrene.
Treatment--As soon as the
disease is discovered, the patient should stop eating, and clear out the
bowels by enemas or mineral water. He should put on a belt next to the
body; then double a towel and pin it to the belt in front. This is for the
purpose of cleanliness, and will prevent any discharge from coming in
contact with the underclothing. As soon as the towel is soiled it should
be replaced by a clean one. The penis should be bathed in hot water--as
hot as can be borne--for from ten to fifteen minutes three times a day.
The parts must be kept absolutely clean, even if bathing in hot water is
necessary every three hours.
The patient should not eat anything
until absolutely comfortable. Then, for the first three days after eating
is started, a pint of buttermilk may be given morning, noon, and night.
The patient should be instructed to retire early, and the mind must be
free from irritations--certainly from lascivious thoughts. A general bath
may be taken before retiring at night. Have the water as hot as the body
will bear. The patient may stay in this bath for five minutes. Then follow
with a quick cold sponge-bath. Follow this with dry rubbing. Where it is
possible for the patient to stay in bed, a disease of this kind can
usually be gotten rid of in from one to four weeks. If it is impossible to
go to bed, the disease will last from three to six weeks. If the patient
has hard work to do, this has a tendency to prolong the disease. Riding
horseback--any kind of jolting of the body--increases the trouble and has
a tendency to prolong the disease. But where the patient can take proper
care of himself, there is very little discomfort, and the disease is
brought to a successful termination in from four to six weeks. Many cases
that I have treated have considered themselves well in two weeks--but not
so; they must be cautious about taking the proper care of themselves, for
if they indulge in overeating, or indulge sensually in any way, the
disease will be reestablished, and a chronic state may develop. The longer
any disease runs on, the more difficult it is to cure.
All the time during the treatment of
this disease the bowels should be kept open, by enemas, if necessary.
After three days of buttermilk as suggested, light eating of fruit and
vegetables may be taken for three days more. If there is no irritation
developing and perfect comfort is experienced, light regulation eating can
This treatment is so very simple that
those who believe in doing something--believe in copious douches, passing
gallons of water through the urethra into the bladder--will really think
that it is almost no treatment at all; but in the course of a year I see
many cases hunting cures who have been treated with copious douches of hot
water and permanganate of potash, and the use of other drugs.
Systemic Infection.--I have
seen gonorrheal rheumatism that was very intractable. This is a disease
that resists treatment. I do not know but that this should be a diagnostic
symptom. It often follows gonorrheal infection of the testes. Abscesses
frequently form, and burrow in such a manner as to make their way into the
bladder. I remember a case that I had thirty years ago, where pus would
sometimes amount to fifty per cent of the urine passed , and no urine was
passed that did not show ten to twenty-five per cent pus. The case had
been diagnosed as gonorrheal infection of the left kidney, and an
operation for the removal of that organ was recommended when the young man
came into my hands. I gave it as my opinion that there was, no need of
kidney extirpation. I based that opinion on his general systemic
condition, which was altogether too good to have anything seriously wrong
with a kidney. I told him that the proper thing for him to do was to be
careful about his eating; in fact, I put him on a strict diet. In the
course of three years he ceased to have pus in the urine.
This disease is most liable to take
on this intense form in those who are most dissipated--alcohol and tobacco
users--and those with sensual minds and a disposition to be as lascivious
In women this disease cannot develop
to such an intensity as, in men, because the drainage can be so much more
efficient through copious vaginal douches. These douches should free the
patient of the disease in half the time necessary in men, but those
unfortunate enough to get the disease should be very willing to be extra
careful. Sex life certainly should be given up absolutely until perfect
health is established. While the disease is at its most acute stage,
copious alkaline douches can be used--a dessert spoonful of baking soda in
a quart of hot water--two to four times a day, depending upon the amount
The suggestions for eating should be
the same as for such cases in men. If there is a chronic catarrhal
inflammation of the womb, great care should be used in using the douche to
keep from forcing the infection into the mouth of the womb. Where this
complication is established, there is no telling how far it will go.
Intra-uterine infection may pass to the fallopian tubes and bring on
infection of the tubes. These cases often have to go to the surgeon or go
to bed for about four months.
definition, according to modern medical science, is an infectious disease
caused by the bacillus tuberculosis. The lesions are characterized by
nodular bodies, called tubercles. These tubercles undergo cheesy
degeneration, sometimes a hardening or fibrous degeneration, and again
they become limy. This is the ending in spontaneous recoveries.
Etiology.--The disease is
universal. It is found in animals. Cattle are supposed to be afflicted
with the disease a very great deal. Forty to forty-five years ago Koch
declared that bovine tuberculosis was similar to human tuberculosis, and
that man could contract tuberculosis from cattle. The last years of his
life he recanted, but I think his followers persisted in advocating his
first declaration in this matter. Those who wish to be thoroughly informed
on this subject from a bacteriological standpoint should get special works
on the subject. I recognize the disease as coming from perverted nutrition
brought on from crowded digestion, in those who are predisposed to take
Such people are very imprudent. Young
men and young women, at the time when they are enjoying the best of
health, practice gross imprudence, such as dancing until very warm, then
standing in a draft or sitting in a draft; also persisting in eating wrong
combinations, overeating, and taxing the nervous system in every kind of
way. Young men use tobacco, and abuse, the stomach by eating all kinds of
trash between meals; in fact, it seems that young people who are
predisposed to this disease are born with a lack of judgment. Self-abuse
enters largely into the cause of this disease by breaking down digestive
power, enervating the subject, and forcing indigestion, decomposition, and
the generation of toxins in the intestine, which are absorbed and poison
the system. Besides the causes that I have mentioned, there is no question
but that vaccination, inoculation, and serum injections have much to do
with starting up a glandular derangement. A morbid process set up by
vaccination in just the right individual--one with a dyscrasia--may be the
beginning of the development of tuberculosis. Infection in childhood may
run on, and show itself, or its evil influence, at forty-five or fifty
years, of age. Instead of the cause of disease being unitary, it is,
decidedly multiple; and this is especially true in tuberculosis. No two
persons will be broken down in exactly the same way. All, however, must
have their resistance brought to a very low ebb before the disease will
The Beginning of TubercuIosis.--Indigestion,
characterized by frequent symptoms of derangement of the stomach, brought
on from overeating or imprudent eating. These patients will be troubled
with cough. After they have gotten over one attack of indigestion, they
have a period of comparative health. Then they will have another spell of
indigestion, developing a similar derangement that may be diagnosed as
bronchitis. The coughing may be quite persistent, but after running on for
some time there may be a complete respite, the patient having quite good
health; but there is always a little inclination for coughing and
expectorating that will be recognized as perhaps a little bronchial
irritation. At last there may be an attack of bronchitis, so-called. There
will be a hacking cough with some temperature. The temperature may run up
to 102 degrees in the morning or evening, but the temperature will not
last twenty-four hours. However, it will return in the form of a periodic
fever. Some cases may be treated for malaria. Particularly will this be
true in malarial countries. In sections of the country where there is no
malaria, the present day diagnosis will be an infection from streptococci.
Such cases will have fits of
indigestion, perhaps sore throat, and it will be diagnosed streptococcus
infection. The cough and expectoration becomes continuous, and a little
fever will show every day-not much-perhaps less than one hundred, with an
increase to 102 degrees. By this time the doctors will be diagnosing
tuberculosis. They will begin the regulation treatment for that disease.
The patient suffers psychologically from this diagnosis, He will be
inclined to be despondent and hopeless, and will require a great deal of
encouragement from family and friends. There are a few temperaments which
will always be looking on the optimistic side-they expect to be cured, but
they are not cured.
If the lungs are watched, there will
be found a growing dullness in one or both lungs--perhaps only the left
lung. This means an accumulation of phlegm in the bronchial tubes.
Treatment.--lf taken to be
treated at this stage, an effort should be made to empty the lungs of the
accumulation. This can be accomplished more or less by having the patient
lie in a position that will allow the accumulation to gravitate to the
throat. Every day the patient should get into that position, and he will
soon learn from experience that he can unload his lungs or get a freer
breathing because of being able to expectorate a great deal of the
This will not benefit the patient at
all unless a rigid dietary is introduced. That means cutting out the dairy
products and the starch; living largely on raw fruit and raw vegetables.
The proteins should be watched. If a small amount can be taken care of
without an increase in the cough and expectoration, it can be continued.
There is no need for experimenting with starch for it will increase cough
and expectoration from the bronchial tubes. From this point on the patient
should improve until completely recovered, if the rigid dietary is adhered
to. Some cases, if taken at quite an advanced stage, can be relieved
within a month, and a very great deal of the dullness in the lungs
Scrupulous cleanliness is, necessary.
A sponge bath of a morning, after a certain amount of exercise, and a tub
bath at least every other night. That means a hot water bath and it should
be continued for twenty to thirty minutes. If the patient is a female,
vaginal douches should be used every day--if the patient be a virgin or a
married woman, the douche should be used just the same. There is sometimes
prejudice against young women being treated in this manner, but it is due
It is not a good thing to have the
patient kept too warm. Bed clothing should be just enough to keep the
patient comfortable, with the addition of a foot warmer, and the foot
warmer is not to be used continuously. It should be kept to one side of
the foot of the bed and as soon as the feet begin to show a coolness, the
warmer can be brought to the feet. The feet should not be against the foot
warmer. In other words, keep the feet warm, but do not allow them to sweat
The patient should be encouraged to
read and even study. The mind must be kept off himself by being interested
in something outside of himself.
This line of treatment ought to save
every patient, and if this care is begun early in the beginning of the
development of symptoms, few would ever get far enough along to have to go
to bed. It is curable in its beginning, one hundred per cent. Tuberculosis
is doctored to death.
If this treatment is adopted early,
there will be no tubercular bacilli, hence those who believe that there is
no tuberculosis except in cases where the bacilli are to be found, will
not believe that the disease can be jugulated as I have described. If it
is any gratification to the profession and the people to believe in the
present diagnosis and treatment, it is up to them to enjoy it. Those who
will follow me will not need to develop that kind of tuberculosis.
ROCKY MOUNTAIN FEVER--TICK
hear occasionally of this disease in the mountains of Idaho, Nevada, and
Wyoming. It is supposed to be produced by the bite of a tick. The disease
begins with chill, fever, and severe pain in the limbs. A rash appears
from the second to the seventh day. Sometimes there is bleeding. Those who
have seen the disease declare the rash to be not unlike that of typhus
fever. Some patients have hemorrhage from the mucous membrane. The
temperature ranges from 103° to 105° F. When the fever runs very high,
there is delirium and stupor. The death-rate in this disease is very
great. It is said to run as high as seventy per cent in Montana, but in
Idaho not more than two or three per cent. The discrepancy is so great
that there must be a very decided difference in the types of the disease
found in the two states.
The disease should yield to the
ordinary treatment of fasting, bathing, washing the bowels every day, and
absolute quiet. When the temperature runs high, give a warm bath, reduced
by cooling the water to 40°. The patient should be kept in the bath long
enough to reduce his temperature to, 101° or 102° F. This should be done
twice a day until the temperature stays below 102°. There is no question
but that there must be a septic state. A hyperpyrexia, or high grade of
fever, must be overcome to prevent the disease from becoming intense.
We have given this as you will find
it in books on the subject, but our belief is, that it is psychological.
Doctors scare the patients to death. As soon as people in the Rocky
Mountain country find a tick on them, they get the jitters. After a doctor
has been called and gives his treatment, the patient is certainly sick. We
must not forget that we can kill people by building a psychological
pathology. If it were possible for people to call a physician who would
make fun of the tick fever, and encourage the patient to understand there
is nothing to it further than what follows the bite of the ticks of the
middle states, we would bear very little of the mountain fever in a short
time. We still believe in the mad dog insanity. This is tick insanity, and
if we can keep insanity out of our disease the mortality will drop
exceedingly low in a very short time.