Most of us use bleach quite often to either clean and sanitize our homes or to whiten our whites. Household bleach is actually sodium hypochlorite but the basis is chlorine.
Chlorine is a bactericidal AND a virucide. In other words, it will effectively kill many bacteria and viruses. So, can you blame the patent medicine industry for thinking that chlorine should be effective at fighting and preventing colds, whooping cough, and all sorts of other ailments?
Well, yes, you can blame them since real science is based on experimentation and evidence, not assumption. Yet, sure enough, there were patent medicines based on chlorine that claimed to prevent colds and cure and prevent all sorts of diseases and conditions. Undoubtedly, chlorine would effectively kill some pathogens in the body. Household bleach kills HIV, for instance. The problem is, of course, it would poison your body in large enough amounts to actually be effective. Some even say that the small amount of chlorine used to sanitize our water supply is killing us.
The advertisement above reads:
“New CHLORINE Discovery Brings INSTANT Relief. Discovered during the war, the curative value of Chlorine has been thoroughly tested by U.S. Military Medical Authorities. In 4,491 army cases of colds and other respiratory diseases, it proved 94 percent effective!
Chlorine is pleasant, safe, and tremendously helpful in preventing as well as healing. It actually destroys the germs that produce the cold–thus banishing ailments which, if unchecked, often lead to serious diseases and large medical bills.
There is no mystery about the new Chlorine treatment, but it must be administered by registered physicians who have the finely adjusted apparatus necessary to assure quick benefits.
Write for FREE book, “Cold Facts,” giving the complete story of new Chlorine Treatment as dispensed by registered physicians in New York at 136 W. 42d St., daily from 10 A.M. to 6.30 P.M. and Sundays 10 to 12…”
This is a bit of a departure from the usual advertisement. Here, a group of “physicians” is claiming to dispense this chlorine “with finely tuned apparatus.” Chances are, no actual chlorine was being dispensed, or it was a solution with such a small amount of chlorine as to be completely useless. Any large amount, of course, would not be ‘pleasant.’ This is not to say that chlorine was not used as a medicine.
As far as the U.S. military testing chlorine, well this is true. Chlorine was tested and is still used today, to disinfect water in the field. Today, this is done with chlorine dioxide tablets.