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November 1946

NEUROLOGIC DISEASE FOLLOWING INFECTIONS OF THROAT AND SKIN AND INCIDENCE OF DIPHTHERITIC INFECTIONS

Author Affiliations

MEDICAL CORPS, ARMY OF THE UNITED STATES

Arch NeurPsych. 1946;56(5):558-566. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1946.02300220071005
Abstract

A NEUROLOGIC syndrome apparently infectious in origin has been reported among the members of the armed forces of the United States in the recent war. These patients have shown varying degrees of neurologic disturbance, ranging from mild peripheral neuritis to severe debility involving the central nervous system as well as the peripheral nerves, similar to the Guillain-Barré syndrome.1 The great majority of these patients had, or had previously had, cutaneous disease. Those with no history of cutaneous disease gave a history of a severe sore throat during the period of approximately one month prior to the onset of neurologic symptoms.

It has been assumed by some investigators2 that the disorder in these patients was the result of infection with Corynebacterium diphtheriae. In support of this view, virulent diphtheria organisms have been isolated from the throat, nose and lesions of the skin of some of the patients. In the

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