PUBLIC H E A L T H .
The Literature of Preventive The Cancer Problem and its Solution.
By HASTINGS GILFORD, F.R.C.S. L o n d o n : H. K. Lewis & Co., Ltd., 1934. pp. 59. Price Is. 6d. (paper), 2s. 6d. (cloth), net. For some 30 years or m o r e the writer of this brochure claims to have approached this p r o b l e m of the genesis of cancer f r o m the point of view of one who is convinced that no m o r e facts are needed, and that the truth lies buried under this m o u n t a i n of information. Subtraction, he thinks, rather than addition is required, and he begins b y discarding all that vast mass of material which has been t h r o w n up so laboriously by those who explore this subject by experimenting on lower animals in laboratories. H e maintains that the p r o b l e m has been complicated and obscured by these experiments rather than simplified and clarified. His own contribution he no d o u b t regards as of an astonishing clarity. Even so, however, at the end he still leaves the reader without definite information as to what he or those who assist h i m in looking after his health are to do in the case of cancer.
Legal Medical Dictionary. By ERSKINE POLLOCK, LL.B., Solicitor of the S u p r e m e C o u r t ; and E. RAYMOND CLUTTERBUCK, M.B., CH.m L o n d o n : Butterworth & Co. (Publishers) Ltd., 1935. pp. 126. Price Ss. 6d. net. T h o u g h it is d i f f c u h for a m e m b e r of the medical profession to see why, there can be no d o u b t that there is a very real need for a b o o k of this sort. T h e difficulty is to get s o m e o n e to undertake the labour of preparing it, and Mr. Pollock and Dr. Clutterbuck having done so, they deserve every credit. Also they merit praise for having done it so well, while the book deserves very strongly to be c o m m e n d e d and r e c o m m e n d e d to those for w h o m it is intended.
Swimming Bath Water Purification.
WILKINSON, M.INST.C.E., M.I.MECH.E., Borough Engineer, Willesden ; and F. J. FORTY, B.SC., A.M.INST.C.~., Borough Engineer, Ealing. L o n d o n : T h e Contractors' Record Ltd., 1934. pp. 262. Price 12s. 6d. net. I t is only five years since the first edition of this volume appeared, but in these years extraordinary changes have taken place, not only in relation to bath construction, etc., but in the
outlook of the public on the subject. The o p p o r t u n i t y for preparing the new edition has been well taken advantage of by the authors, who have completely re-written the book and m a d e it more definitely than ever the standard publication on the subject.
In the Annual Reports WHY IS ALL THIS DENTAL WORK NECESSARY ? T h e great majority of our elementary school children
are physically well developed, apparently well nourished and defects of a serious character are conspicuous by their absence. Similarly, maternity and child welfare centres are very well attended, and the expectant and nursing mothers, many of whom are recommended for dental inspection by the medical officers in attendance, appear physically well fitted for their immediate responsibilities, and are likewise apparently well nourished. Factors to which brief reference might be made in answer to this important question concern, filst, the water supply; second, feeding ; third, cleanliness ; and fourth, mal-development of the jaws, resulting in irregularities in the position of the teeth. In Cambridge, we are fortunate in having a liberal water supply containing a large proportion "of lime salts. It is questionable, however, whether these salts are actually in an assimilable form. There can be no doubt that our elementary school children are fed chiefly by means of carbohydrate food. Food, that is to say, which is soft, sticky, and starchy, and therefore adheres to the teeth, ferments with the production of harmful bacteria. The teeth of the great majority of our elementary school children are not kept clean, a fact which in itself does more probably to raise the incidence of dental caries than any other. To inculcate habits of cleanliness is essential and must be practised if we arc to offer any means of prevention and stimulate progress. Accordingly, I will offer two suggestions in the hope that those in authority will grant the necessary facilities whenever and wherever practicable. First, time should be allotted and materials provided to permit the cleaning of the teeth of all our children attending nursery classes and infant departments once daily; and secondly, similar provisions so that older children can brush their teeth carefully under the supervision of teachers of physical training and teachers of hygiene who should be invited to co-operate. Irregularity of the teeth (another predisposing cause of dental caries) is much too frequent ; indeed, more than 50 per cent. of our elementary school children show irregularities of the teeth to a greater or lesser degree, and this problem is certainly one which can only be handled by the dentists. It will be necessary to devote more time and thought to this problem, and two solutions are worthy of attention--0) in children of not more than ten years of age, aid the development of the jaws by means of apparatus, and so prevent future irregularity ; and (2) in older children consider the advisability of removing one or more permanent teeth to relieve overcrowding.--Mr. W. Baird Grandison, Public Dental Officer, Cambridge.