Case Number 4
This case is one of the few that reveal the working conditions of a doctor such as Xu Shuwei. Following his diagnosis, Xu Shuwei prepared a medication and administered it to the patient. However, members of the patient’s family were impatient with the effects of the medication. They strongly requested that Xu apply a more radical treatment strategy, namely sweating. This case suggests that even laymen were likely to have some medical knowledge, and were apt to insist that doctors alter their treatments. A physician’s only resort was to take the complainers’ logic seriously and to persuade them that his strategy was correct. Unlike most of Xu’s cases, the course of treatment took almost 2 weeks.
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