( Originally Published 1934 )
October 12, 1918, the writer published a thesis on what he considered were some of the fundamental principles for the prevention, alleviation and cure of tuberculosis, in the New York Medical Journal under the title "The Real Value of Fresh Air in Tuberculosis and Many Infectious Diseases." This represented a rather early exposition of the present therapy and principles of common foundationing; it was more or less skeptic-ally received at that time. However, today the fact is evident that to a considerable extent, tuberculosis has decreased in proportion to the increase in the proficiency of our nose and throat science. The further the "nasal window" is opened in a normal way, the more air can be obtained; that is, the freer the nasal breathing, the more oxygen will the individual inhale and the less nasal sinus infection can that person have. Such nasal normality is particularly necessary in tuberculosis ; in this disease the fundamental principles of common foundationing are invaluable, and must be carried out to the greatest extent. This first principle of common foundationing maintains that the oxygen supply to the body must be of the largest possible amount, and secondly, in enabling the body to inhale the largest percentage of air, simultaneously the nasal sinuses are cleared of all sinusitis. Without a great deal of either evident or latent sinusitis, tuberculosis is impossible. All this is obtained by bestowing on the body the ability to inhale oxygen in the greatest possible amounts by opening the nasal fossae (nose) to the utmost without destroying any necessary normal parts. If this principle were carried out in its entirety, there would be no cases of tuberculosis. And the antithesis of this is equally true. Any person who is properly common foundationed is not in danger of developing tuberculosis in any form whatsoever.
Undoubtedly, the greater improvement in hygienic living conditions of the average person, and other improvements such as standards of living, increased and better distribution of the knowledge of the laws of contagion and infection, etc., have all helped towards decreasing the number of cases of tuberculosis.
The fact remains that people who are situated in the best environments frequently develop tuberculosis, and almost as many of this class are affected by this disease as those people who live in apparently much poorer surroundings and localities. As in the case of most dire crimes, the explanation is usually the same it is an inside job. That is, the individual's deranged nasal structure is the principal fault. In the case of tuberculosis and most all other diseases, we will find that the inside of the individual's head the poorly constructed nose, and the person's common foundation of disease is the explanation.
For disease prevention purposes it is not so much the quality of the air one lives in that counts, as the quantity one is capable of absorbing. Any ordinary or average atmosphere is air of sufficient purity. Fresh air is most desirable and windows should be kept open as much as possible. One ingredient which is only too often present in the air of many homes should be carefully guarded against, and that dangerous ingredient is carbon monoxide which often escapes from stoves, furnaces, gas ranges, etc. There is nothing which will lower the resistance as rapidly as carbon monoxide poisoning. Carbon dioxide is not a dangerous ingredient of the air.
Tuberculosis of the lungs and all pulmonary diseases are due principally to the intake of deficient amounts of oxygen the absorption of too little oxygen. On careful investigation it will be found that the principal explanation for this deficient oxygen intake is due to interference with the proper functioning of the lung nerves, that is, the vagus or pneumogastric nerves. The person's common foundation of disease causes this vagus nerve trouble and as a result, the person does not breathe as deeply and properly as is necessary for the prevention of lung diseases.
The amount of air every one's nose is capable of preparing for absorption by the lungs is of prime importance. The mere presence of fresh air is no guarantee against tuberculosis. There must be present within the body (the nose and throat division) a well constructed nasal mechanism ; only such a nasal arrangement is capable of preparing the air properly and in large enough quantities so that it can be absorbed by the lungs in sufficient amounts to keep the body well. Thus the first factor is that good health is not so much dependent on the fact that the body must be surrounded by the best quality of fresh air at all times, as that the body must be capable of absorbing the oxygen from the air in sufficient quantities to maintain good health, and the constant passing of such a large or normal quantity of air through the nose will prevent sinusitis ; without the presence of sinusitis, tuberculosis is impossible. Of prime importance for the prevention or cure of consumption is the necessity for the person or patient to be able to breathe in air at all times easily and in the largest possible quantities. All tuberculous or consumptive patients have small, narrow, crowded nasal interiors which interfere with the easy inhalation of the natural (large and proper) amounts of air; this unusual narrowness of the nasal interior is especially true of the upper respiratory passages of these sufferers of tuberculosis.
It must be constantly remembered that the keynote of this system is particularly borne out in tuberculosis the common foundation of disease depresses the activity of the vagus or lung nerve, and as a result, the patient does not breathe as deeply as he should. The antisepticizing treatments quickly relieve this depression of vagus activity and the patient is enabled immediately to breathe deeply.
All those people who possess a common foundation of good health are not in danger of contracting tuberculosis. The possession of a common foundation of good health is the best safeguard against tuberculosis. Only in the presence of a rather decided common foundation of disease is it possible for tuberculosis to develop. Hence, to prevent people from contracting tuberculosis, all that is necessary is to remove the patient's common foundation of disease and turn it into a common foundation of good health.
The underlying reason for all this is similar to that in pneumonia cases. Placing the patient in oxygen tents or mountain atmosphere is undoubtedly a great help, but the patient's body can unconsciously do much more for itself when his organism or body is so arranged that he will be compelled automatically to inhale the normal (largest) quantities of air. He will then obtain much more oxygen than when placed in the best mountain resorts or in the best oxygen tents. All this can be accomplished by common foundationing the patient.
To effectually and permanently cure a tuberculous patient, it is therefore necessary to remove this common foundation of disease and replace it by a common foundation of good health. Such a change completely reorganizes the patient. It is the first and most important step towards a permanent cure. Without this correction of the patient's common foundation of disease and changing it to a common foundation of good health, no permanent cure can be assured the patient, nor can the patient be properly cured. This does not imply that the doctor must rush in and perform surgical operations on the patient's nose and throat. In most cases all surgery on the nose and throat can be safely delayed until the patient is in a safe physical condition to undergo such a strain. Aside from general care, the proper use of the antisepticizing treatments and dietary rules of this system are all that is necessary. Gradually the patient will improve under these treatments and diet and then the nose can be opened up to enable the patient to breathe in more air much more easily and with much less effort.
In most cases, if taken in time, common foundationing the patient will offer the patient the arrest of the disease and finally a cure.
The antisepticizing treatments, as in all other lung inflammations, control and relieve the cough. The expectoration is greatly lessened and in reasonable time stopped entirely; the patient is benefited in every way. There is decided improvement in strength, ability to sleep, color, appetite and bowels. The rales and other signs of the lungs and chest walls clear up and disappear.