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3 These then are the things to be done by those, who, being in health, have cause merely to be apprehensive. Now there follows the treatment of fevers, a class of disease which both affects the body as a whole, and is exceedingly common. Of fevers, one is quotidian, another tertian, a third quartan. At times certain fevers recur in even longer cycles, but that is seldom. In the former varieties both the diseases and their medicines are of various kinds. Now quartan fevers have the simpler characteristics. Nearly always they begin with shivering, then heat breaks out, and the fever having ended, there are two days free; this on the fourth day it recurs. But of tertian fevers there are two classes. The one, beginning and desisting in the same way as a quartan, has merely this distinction, that it affords one day free, and recurs on the third day. The other is far more pernicious; and it does indeed recur on the third day, yet out of forty-eight hours, about thirty-six, sometimes less, sometimes more, are in fact occupied by the paroxysm, nor does the fever entirely cease in the remission, but it only becomes less violent. This class most practitioners term hemitritaion. Quotidian fevers, however, vary and have many[p. 229] forms. For some begin straightaway with a feeling of heat, others of chill, others with shivering. I call it a chill when the extremities become cold, shivering when the whole body shakes. Again, some desist so that complete freedom follows, others so that there is some diminution of the fever, yet none the less some remnants persist until the onset of the next paroxysm; and others often run together so that there is little or no remission, but the attacks are continuous. Again, some have a vehement hot stage, others a bearable one; some are every day equal, others unequal, and the paroxysm in turn slighter one day, more severe another: some recur at the same time the day following, some either earlier or later; some take up a day and a night with the paroxysm and the remission, some less, others more; some set up sweating as they remit, others do not; and in some, freedom is arrived at through sweating, in others the body is only made the weaker. But the paroxysms also occur sometimes once on any one day, sometimes twice or more often. Hence it often comes about that daily there are several paroxysms and remissions, yet so that each corresponds to one which has preceded it. But at times the paroxysms also become so confused together, that neither their durations nor intermissions can be observed. It is not true, as some say, that no fever is irregular unless as the outcome either of an abscess or of inflammation or of ulceration; for if this were true, the treatment always would be the easier, but what evident causes bring about, hidden ones can bring about also. And men are not arguing about facts but about words[p. 231] if, when during the same illness fevers come on in different ways, they say that these are not irregular returns of the same fever, but other different ones arising in succession; even though it were true, it would have nothing to do with the mode of treatment. The duration of remissions also is at times considerable, at other times scarcely of any length.
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