This section is from the book "Shampooing Or Benefits Resulting From The Use Of The Indian Medicated Vapour Bath", by Sake Dene Mahomed. Also available from Amazon: Shampooing: Or Benefits Resulting From The Use Of The Indian Medicated Vapor Bath.
Sir, - Before I leave Brighton it is my wish, (and indeed I might add my duty) to give my testimony of the efficacy of your incomparable Vapour Bath. I came down from town to try the effect of the tepid sea bath for a rheumatic complaint chiefly felt in the feet, under which I had laboured nearly four months, my left, arm from the wrist to the fingers being first attacked, and shortly afterwards rendered by swelling and pain entirely useless and obliged to be carried in a sling. On my arrival in Brighton however, I soon heard from some of my own friends such extraordinary instances of cures effected by the power of the Medicated Vapour Bath upon the human frame, that I determined upon giving that a trial instead of the sea water bath, as advised by my medical attendants in town. I could at this time scarcely walk, and even with the assistance of my servant found great difficulty and pain in hobbling a few steps before the door; after the fifth or sixth Vapour Bath I could walk without my servant's arm; and from listening to invalids in the room appropriated for their use, going into the baths or returning from them, I was astonished to hear from their own lips such miraculous accounts of cures performed upon themselves in cases so much worse than mine, that though I was gradually getting better, I felt impatient, and expected that I should more speedily recover the use of my limbs after a few months' confinement, when I saw before me objects perfectly restored, who had been victims of the most obstinate disease Jot as many years.
I mention this as a caution to others not to be too sanguine; it is so natural to desire to be relieved from the only impediment to one's comfort (at least to those who are in perfect health of body) the free use of one's feet, and in a place where there are so many attractive inducements for their service. But I am convinced a great deal depends upon constitution, as well perhaps as the age of the the patient; persons of 50 must not expect that remedies can act as vigorously upon their frames, as upon those of 25; patience and perseverance I believe to be all that is required to effect a perfect restoration to health in gouty and rheumatic subjects; of this I offer undoubted authority in the person of
Sir, yours sincerely,
Rose Mountain. Mighell-street, Dorset-gardens, Oct. 1, 1824.
I had intended before I had left Brighton, to have given my thanks to you personally and a hearty shake of the hand you have enabled me to put into motion, but I was prevented, and the only thing that I can now do is to bestow upon you its first efforts at penmanship.
You will be happy to hear that I bore my journey without inconvenience, though the day was damp and chilly. I could not help recalling to my mind the different state of my health at the time of my last travelling the road, the favourable change in which, under a higher power, I attribute to the trial and use of your bath.
It was about three months since that I arrived at Brighton, having for several previous months, and indeed then, suffering under a severe attack of acute rheumatism. I tried Brighton for change of air, but unfortunately, very shortly became worse, so much so, that my limbs, the use of which I had regained partially, became totally useless - with pain in every movement, and completely sleepless, I only purchased a temporary rest by the strongest opiates. In this state, about six weeks back, I proposed to my father (who is himself of the medical profession) the trial of your baths - I had heard of their success, and I wished to try them.
You may remember how I came to you helpless, hardly able to stand, dragging with pain my limbs by the help of two sticks; my general health injured, and indeed, almost worn out. I tried one Vapour Bath, and that night, for the first time for many months, enjoyed a refreshing sleep, and I awoke with agreeable ease and freedom in my limbs, and from that time to the present, I have never had occasion to use my accustomed opiates. Were it only that your bath produced so great a blessing as sleep, it would be of itself a sufficient recommendation to all invalids to make use of it to regain so desirable an object. But it did more; in a few more baths my spirits recovered; my movements became easier- I soon walked, and I may now, after nine baths, confidently hope, as I gather fresh strength every day, that though late in the season, the relief that you afforded me will be permanent, and that I shall be completely restored to my former health and strength.
So assured am I of the efficacy of your Vapour Bath in the rheumatism, even in the worst form, by my own case, that
I shall feel happy if any representations of mine in this letter, if you think proper to make use of it, will induce any afflicted with it, to use so speedy, and simple, and, as I have found, so effectual a remedy to their sufferings. I am, dear Mahomed,
W. Bodham Wright. 3, Grenville-street, Brunswick-square.
P. S. - Please to thank your son for me, for his kind attention when I was helpless.