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JAMA 100 Years Ago
September 13, 2000

"OLD AGE WITHOUT DOCTORS."

Author Affiliations
 

JenniferReiling, Editorial Assistant

JAMA. 2000;284(10):1214. doi:10.1001/jama.284.10.1214

Recently a lady died in Chicago who had attained the distinction of having lived over a hundred years. As is usual in such cases, the lay press proceeded to give the reasons why she had lived so long. Among these, the one given most prominence was the alleged fact that she had taken no medicine nor consulted a physician since she was 18 years old. This was twisted and enlarged on by other journals until it has appeared in a majority of the newspapers of the country, and has made a text for many an editorial against the doctors. An investigation, however, spoils the whole story, for it shows that the old lady had been under the care of the same physician for twenty-seven years, that for the past fifteen he had attended her for illness at least every three months, and all this time her life had been regulated by his advice. Verily, the evolutions of the inner consciousness of the average reporter evolve strange things, and his imagination beholdeth many things that are not!

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