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March 1950

SODIUM CONCENTRATION OF THERMAL SWEAT IN TREATED AND UNTREATED PATIENTS WITH MENTAL DISEASE

Author Affiliations

BOSTON

From the Laboratory of Clinical Physiology, McLean Hospital, Waverley, Mass., and the Department of Medicine, Harvard Medical School.

Arch NeurPsych. 1950;63(3):444-452. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1950.02310210090007
Abstract

THERE is evidence that treatment of mental disease results in strong stimulation of the adrenal gland; increased secretion of steroid hormones is suggested by studies on the change in lymphocytes and eosinophils in the blood, the uric acid—creatinine ratio and changes in the extracellular fluid volume after shock therapy.1 In an attempt to gain insight into the activity of the adrenal gland in relation to salt and water metabolism in mental disease and during the course of treatment, it was decided to study the sodium concentration of sweat in patients.

MATERIAL AND METHODS  Studies were made on 7 nonpsychotic men, 9 nonpsychotic women, 16 psychotic men and 19 psychotic women. The ages ranged from 20 to 76, and the diagnoses were varied (tables 1 and 2). Some of the patients had been ill for long periods, but none was severely deteriorated (table 2).The method of sweat collection was

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