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passes but I see patients who have been wearing these or similar plasters for months, but with no benefit; indeed, in the majority of cases, with absolute harm.

In the same Charity in which carrots are so freely used, they attempt to produce absorption by means of some of the preparations of lead mixed with oil. This mixture softens the tissues, making more room for the cancerous deposits, which, instead of being absorbed, increase with greater rapidity.

Blistering has also been highly spoken of. It is, however, an agent that I should have much hesitation in using in cancerous affections.

Iodine, from the powerful influence it exerts upon non-malignant tumours of the breast, has been extensively used in scirrhus. Mr. Walshe says:-" A trial of iodine externally, provided the part be indolent, and its use excites no irritative action, is certainly advisable; the length of the trial should be regulated by the apparent influence produced on the tumour. Since I wrote these words, in 1840, my confidence in the powers of iodine-friction, especially when combined with the use of iodide of arsenic internally, has increased. Nor does my present experience allow me to conceive a single doubt that tumours, actually and truly scirrhous in structure-tumours which would have run the common course of cancer

-may be arrested in their progress by early and judicious use of these agents."

Mr. G. N. Hill, Mr. Travers, Sir Benjamin Brodie, and many other eminent men regard the external use of iodine with the same favour as Mr. Walshe. From what I have seen of the use of iodine, even in the earliest stage, and in the most favourable cases, I must confess that I am not nearly so sanguine as to its specific power in cancer as these gentlemen seem to be.

Mr. Samuel Young, in the year 1809, conceived and acted upon the idea, that the continued nutrition of cancerous tumours might be completely prevented, and their absorption insured, by continued pressure. Dr. A. L. J. Bayle has given us the results of his practice.†

"The number of the cases given is nineteen; of these, seventeen related to cancer of the breast, two to ulcers of the cheek and upper lip. Twelve cases terminated by cure; five were considerably benefited; the two cutaneous ulcers improved somewhat. The majority of the tumours were hard, irregular, tuberculated, and the seat of lancinating pain; six of them were ulcerated, and discharged ichorous pus. Even

*Walshe On Cancer, p. 206.

+ Bibliothèque de Thérapeutique, tom. iv. p. 202. 1837.

in the worst cases the tumours diminished in size; but the patients fell victims to the diathesis."

When Mr. Young announced these results, it was tried in the Middlesex Hospital, under the supervision of a committee. Sir Charles Bell drew up the report, which concluded by saying, "that compression could not be regarded as a specific cure, and had no claims to notice except for its power of alleviating pain." This method of treating cancer has been highly approved of by Mr. Travers, M. Recamier, and others, who say they have effected cures by its means. Dr. Arnott is, however, probably the first who invented an instrument to make an equable pressure upon all parts of the tumour. He has published many interesting cases treated with this instrument, and seemingly with success.

I have seen positive mischief arising from its persevering use, and fully coincide with the views entertained by Velpeau upon the subject, who says:"I was led to try the effects of compression for myself in the treatment of cancer of the breast. Unfortunately, I was not long in finding that all was still error and deception. In whatever way it was applied, -whether with dossils of agaric or amadou superimposed on each other, or with graduated compresses properly adjusted, or with padded plates of metal, or

with bands of linen, or peculiar bandages, or with strips of diachylon-compression, however useful in other cases, had no effect in curing cancer of the breast. It may flatten or depress the tumours into the midst of the tissues, or into the intercostal spaces, and thus, in some instances, mask their existencewhich has no doubt imposed upon some persons-but it never leads to their resolution. I am quite unable to explain the success which M. Maisonneuve is said to have obtained; and I am compelled to ask whether, notwithstanding his well-known abilities, this surgeon has not committed an error in diagnosis in the particular case of which he speaks? On reflection, we may even imagine that compression is not always destitute of danger. Without taking into account the embarrassment to respiration, and the pain which it causes, or the excoriations to which it sometimes gives rise, what must it do, if ever, by its purely mechanical action, it succeeds in causing a genuine cancer of the breast to disappear? It must be that the molecules of the tumour are repelled into the circulation, and that we have a general infection instead of a local malady. On this supposition alone, ought we not à priori to discountenance its employment? In cases of cancer, ought not the object of the practitioner to be, to bring the disease towards

the external parts, instead of to drive it into the interior? I have seen cancerous tumours disappear to some extent under compression, and the surgeon and the patient both exclaim, victory; but, on looking minutely into the case, there was no difficulty in ascertaining that, in becoming flattened, the tumour had simply depressed the tissues, and got hidden between two of the ribs; consequently, a few days after the removal of the bandage, it will, in such instances, reappear still larger and better developed than at first. I have consequently no hesitation in stating that we ought not to count upon the efficacy of this measure in the treatment of cancer; if it sometimes be successful, we may feel sure that it is only in cases of innocent engorgement, or of non-cancerous tumours."*

He

Dr. James Arnott was the first who introduced the plan of freezing cancerous tumours, so as to destroy their vitality. He applies intense cold, either by means of bladders filled with a freezing mixture, or metallic balls reduced to a low temperature. gives a number of cases in his work, which, he says, have proved completely successful. I have never tried it myself; but I have seen a number of cases in which it has been tried, and I am sorry to say they all were

*Henry's Velpeau on Diseases of the Breast, p. 460.

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