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Page:New observations on inoculation - Angelo Gatti.djvu/16

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INTRODUCTION.

books remains what it was fifty years ago; and every where we find nearly the same directions with regard to the preparation, the manner of inserting the variolous matter, and the treatment of the artificial small-pox. I say the same, for it seems of no great consequence, whether the preparation is a little more or less rigorous; the insertion effected by an incision or a blister; the incision somewhat slighter or deeper; whether it is made in the legs or arms; whether the matter is used alone, or dried and powdered, or imbibed in a thread; and lastly, whether the purging is more or less repeated: these differences are too inconsiderable to make any essential distinction between the methods hitherto taught, or to occasion much variety in the success.

The apology of inoculation ought, however, to be attended with, if not preceded by, researches on the best method of inoculating: for if it is a salutary practice, when carried on in a certain way, but becomes fatal to many patients when differently managed, this defence will not be properly supported, unless the particular mode of the operation is previously determined and exactly pointed out.

From the inattention of those who have written upon the subject, might it not be concluded, that there really is but one method of inoculating; or if more, that they are equally good? that, provided the variolous matter be inserted, and the small-pox conveyed, all the rest is of no consequence; and if the operation should be more or less successful, or even if fa-