26 JANUARY 1945, Page 14

LITHIUM siR,—If I have guessed right, the learned composer of

your crossword No. 304 has helped to perpetuate a danger8us Victorian superstition. He seems to assert that lithium "helps to put the out in gout." At a large store I was told recently that for lumbago they sold more Effervescent Lithium Citrate than anything else. I looked the substance up in the current Materia Medica and learnt that "there is no justification for the use of these salts." Apparently, lithium is about as useful for the gout as the stick of insoluble sulphur which our grandfathers always put in the dog's water for III: good of his health.—Your obedient servant,