By Attia, A.; Buisson. G. (ed.)
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Extra resources for Advances in Mesopotamian Medicine from Hammurabi to Hippocrates
Worse still, some physicians predict danger and death in order to increase proﬁts from their prescriptions. This mode of acting is sometimes due to a physician’s overconﬁdence. ” For patients “struggling between life and death,” physicians should also utilize “the powers of the mind” by the use of placebo treatments. 11 Fortunately, many dying patients under Rush’s care were not subjected to heroic treatments until they were nearly dead. He weighed the probable effects of his commonly used remedies in light of the recuperative powers of the mind.
But if I am not mistaken in my idea, there are few professional temptations to which medical men are more liable, and frequently from the very best principles, than that of unintentionally using language to the patient and his friends, more encouraging than sincerity would vindicate, on cool reﬂection. 49 That’s about as verbose, nice, and indirect as a clergy friend could ever sound. We will soon see what Percival did with Gisborne’s counsel. In the meantime, nine years before Percival published his Code of Ethics, Thomas Gisborne published On the Duties of Physicians, in which he is far more pointed about what he so mildly suggested to Percival.
This piece of cruelty is often practiced when the attendants are left to themselves. A still more hazardous practice has been very prevalent in France and Germany, and, I am afraid, is not unknown in this country. 37 He refers to an essay by a German lawyer to prove that this practice was still occurring in his time, which the lawyer said was being done for the purpose of putting the patient out of pain. Ferriar counters that the practice suffocates dying persons because they can no longer breathe without the aid of pillows propping up their heads.