Medicine: Gloomy Dane

Is it worth while trying to cure alcoholics? At least 60% of U.S. doctors don't bother (TIME, Jan. 20, 1947). Some psychiatrists are more hopeful. They think that most alcoholics can be cured if both doctors and patients try hard; alcoholics, they think, are apt to be sensitive people, well worth saving.

Not so, says Denmark's Modens Ellermann, after examining the records of 231 drunks (all men) in Saint Hans Mental Hospital in Copenhagen. He found that 72 were insane, another 55 were "constitutional psychopaths" with deformed personalities and a lack of moral responsibility. The Saint Hans alcoholics, he reported last week...