It is (?) Better to to do Something than Nothing

Dr.Harold Morowitz wrote an essay reviewing the first edition of the Merck Manual, which was published in 1899. He was most struck by the extraordinary number of worthless treatments for many of the conditions. He noticed there were over 95 ineffective gonorrhea treatments, and he commented "it is a natural feeling to something than to do nothing." I'm not sure what all these were, but some no doubt had significant risk as well as being non-therapeutic! Since the fields of bacteriology and biochemistry were brand new sciences, it's not surprising that the effectiveness of therapies was questionable and had not been honed. But as we sit at our next gyno appointment with a condition that may not yet have been fully diagnosed, remember what the forefathers of physicians today realized, sometimes treatment for treatment's sake alone is not always the best course of action. 


 
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