Letter from William Osler to F. C. Shattuck [Transcript]
Osler writes of Typho-malarial fever and his opinion that the two diseases, typhoid and malaria, coexist but do not form a
separate, hybrid disease. He asks Shattuck what he thinks of Durham's views about relapse. Osler is very interested in
these views and is sorry that he did not get a chance to incorporate them into the last edition of his text book. He thanks
Shattuck for his suggestions about gas poisoning, a highly mortal and common problem in Baltimore.
[Description courtesy of McGill University.]
About this transcript: Soon after Osler's death in 1919, Lady Osler asked their good friend Dr. Harvey Cushing to write
a biography. For this project, Cushing gathered a wide variety of material, including a substantial amount of Osler correspondence
and other memorabilia borrowed from Osler's family, friends, and colleagues. He employed three secretaries to transcribe
these documents, and later donated the transcripts (along with his other working materials) to the Osler Library. Because
many of the original documents were returned to the owners, the Cushing transcripts constitute the largest and most accessible
collection of Osler's correspondence.
Harvey Cushing's "Life of Sir William Osler" was published by Oxford University Press in 1925, and was awarded
a Pulitzer Prize in 1926.
Number of Image Pages:
1 (700,782 Bytes)
1902-01-02 (January 2, 1902)
[Shattuck, F. C.]
Transcriber: [Cushing, Harvey]
Original Repository: Osler Library of the History of Medicine, McGill University. Osler Library Archive Collections, P417: Harvey Cushing Fonds
This item is in the public domain. It may be used without permission.
"Father of Modern Medicine": The Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, 1889-1905
Dr. William Osler,
No. 1 W. Franklin Street.
Baltimore, Md., Jan. 2nd, 1902.
Dear Shattuck: -
I do not know how in the dickens that note was left out on the high mortality among teetotalers. It must have been shoved
out to make room for some other things.
With reference to typho-malarial fever, the coexistence of the two diseases of course must be recognized, but I think the
statement is true that there is no hybrid malady -- no true separate disease typho-malarial fever, and I think the stronger
such a statement can be made the better for the g.p.'s of the country.
Whether only post hoc or propter hoc, certainly an indiscretion in diet may be followed directly by a relapse, and it is possible,
too, that it may be an association as Chiari suggests, with the flooding of the intestines with bacilli from the gallbladder.
What you think of Durham's views about relapse? I was so interested in them, and sorry I did not see them in time to incorporate
them in the new edition.
Thanks for your suggestions about illuminating gas poisoning. Of course there should be a chapter on it, particularly as this
is the centre of the greatest mortality. We kill more here from illuminating gas in a year I believe then all the other large
cities put together.
With many thanks and best wishes for the New Year.