Dr. Rush believed in purging the sickness from the body by making the person vomit and drawing blood from them. He thought that this would release the illness from them and help heal them. Mattie's mother is bled by Dr. Kerr during the novel. He also leaves her herbs to make her vomit and use the bathroom more, in hopes of draining the illness from her.
This was the American method of treating Yellow Fever. Most doctors didn't have experience with it and believed that purging the body was the only solution. However, their methods didn't actually cure Yellow Fever.
Dr. Deveze is a French doctor who works with patients at Bush Hill. Unlike Dr. Rush, he doesn't believe in bloodletting. He wants to leave patients in their beds to rest, drink fluids, and improve naturally.
Dr. Rush's treatment was aggressive and overt. It appeared to be something that would convince people they were being treated. Dr. Deveze's treatment was more hands-off and relied on the body to heal itself.
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