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In Norman Gevitzs compilation Other Healers nine authors including Gevitz analyze alternative medical practices compare and contrast theses alternatives to mainstream or orthodox medicine and present both the unorthodox practitioners and the mainstream advocates responses to the others profession Gevitz being the editor and a contributing writer serves a dual function in his historical account of alternative medicine The first selection of the book deals with the definition understanding and reaction that orthodox medicine takes in response four infamous unorthodox healers Among these John Tennent who advocated along with many of the unorthodox healers the notion of self-cure in his book Every Man His Own Doctor Elisha Perkins who innovated the practice of applying metal rods known as tractors to surgical patients and is alleged to have given a pair of these tractors to George Washington William Radam who believed that microbes were the cause of all diseases Gevitz 6 invented what he called Microbe Killer which was found to contain over ninety-nine percent water And finally Albert Adams who wrote the book Spondylotherapy and in 1916 created what he called his electronic theory In the preface is mainstream medicines reaction to the alternative practitioners Gevitz viii and their methods along with current perspectives on alternative medicine The most significant according to Gevitz of the actions that the orthodox practitioners took was the Pure Food and Drug Act in 1906 of which mainstream medicine lobbied heavily for Gevitz goes on to cite such famous critics of the alternative medical movements Oliver Wendell Holmes is one such critic who delivered two speeches that belittled the alternative philosophies Holmes along with others charged that the unorthodox healers were guilty of lying and failing to properly credit their sources Yet the unorthodox counterattacked mainstream medicines claim to being the only true medicine by bringing forth the practices of Heroic Medicine More detailed descriptions of several of the alternative movements are described in later chapters although Gevitz
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