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Page 5 of Account of spasmodic cholera as it appeared in the city of Lexington in June 1833 / by Lunsford P. Yandell, M.D.

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YANDELL on Spasmodic Cholera. ; ic, when all had been deemed so safe, was as great as could easily be conceived. Many of the citizens fled from their homes. Some believed it contagious, and kept aloof from their neighbors. During the gloomiest period of the epidemic, the streets seemed deserted. Even the market house, on market days, presented a picture of desolation, and but for the energy of the City Authorities, and the en- terprize of some philanthropic citizens, famine must have been added to the sufferings of many poor families. In this state of things, when there were in the city pro- bably a thousand sick, dispersed in all directions, and when the greater number of attacks came on at night, many persons were inevitably neglected. At one period, when the disease was most violent, and time, consequently, most precious, it was almost impossible to End a physician after night. Many were therefore obliged to wait until morning, when too often they had reached a hopeless con- dition. If to those who suffered in this way, we add the ig- norant who were little acquainted with the early symptoms or the danger of the disease, and the indigent who could command neither nurses, nor messengers to send for a physi- cian in time, we have a very large class for whom it may be said the resources of the profession were as nothing. In looking over the list of the victims of cholera, it is impossible to resist the conclusion that this was one of the chief causes ofits mortality; and I may add, that, with a hospital, where the poor might have received prompt medi- cal aid, and suitable nursing, and if the panic had been less, and citizens had always stood by, and encouraged, and assist- ed each other, the issue of many cases, perhaps the gene- ral issue of the epidemic itself, might have been different from what it was. Nevertheless, the influence of such causes may be exagger- ated. The mortality of the disease probably depends more after all upon its intrinsic virulence, than upon any such ad- ventitious circumstances.