In Reply.—I would like to thank Drs Raffensperger and Cuono and Mr Barese for their interest in our work. They bring up the dilemma of the applicability of animal and in vitro models to clinical surgery. To this issue, Claude Bernard, the father of experimental medicine, said the following:
I not only conclude that experiments made on animals from the physiological, pathological and therapeutic points of view have results that are applicable to theoretical medicine, but I think that without such comparative study of animals, practical medicine can never acquire scientific character.1
The fact that a practice or ritual has been used in surgery for decades does not diminish the value of further scientific evaluation of that practice.
Mr Barese and Dr Cuono point out that organic matter in wounds consumes the hypochlorites. Nobel Prize winner Alexander Fleming addressed this very issue about Dakin's solution and commented that