A Tribute to Doctor James B. Herrick

Cardiotonic drugs (digitalis, strophantus, etc) were firstly used in the acute myocardial infarction by Doctor James Bryan Herrick who developed the Thrombogenic Theory to explain the origin of the MI, what happened in 1912.

Our aim with this article is to pay tribute to Doctor James Herrick reproducing his therapeutic conduct.

 

 "-CLINICAL FEATURES OF SUDDEN OBSTRUCTION OF THE CORONARY ARTERIES- (JAMA, 59: 2015-2020, 1912) JAMES B. HERRICK, MD

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If these cases are recognized, the importance of absolute rest in bed for several days is clear. It would seem to be far wiser to use Digitalis, Strophantus or their congeners than to follow the routine practice of giving Nitroglycerin or allied drugs.

The hope for the damaged Myocardium lies in the direction of securing a supply of blood through friendly neighboring vessels, so as to restore so far as possible its functional integrity.

Digitalis or Strophantus by increasing the force of the heartís beat, would tend to help in the direction more than the Nitrites. The prejudice against Digitalis in cases in which the Myocardium is weak is only partially grounded in fact.

Clinical experience shows this remedy of great value in Angina, and especially in cases of angina with low blood pressure, and these obstructive cases come under this head. The timely use this remedy may occasionaly in such cases save life.

Quick results should also be sought by using it hypodermically or intravenously. Other quickly acting heart remedies would also be of service."

 

While the Thrombogenic Theory was accepted worldwide until today, the treatment by cardiotonics for Acute Myocardial Infarction was forgotten by the well established and dominant Medical Science, causing a delay of almost a century about the therapeutic solution.

 

Quintiliano H. de Mesquita, M.D.

 

 

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