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JAMA 100 Years Ago
April 11, 2001

SUGGESTIONS FOR THE RECONSTRUCTION OF SYPHILITIC NOSES.*

Author Affiliations
 

JAMA 100 Years Ago Section Editor: Jennifer Reiling, Assistant Editor.

JAMA. 2001;285(14):1816. doi:10.1001/jama.285.14.1816

JOHN B. ROBERTS, M.D.
PHILADELPHIA, PA.

Nasal deformity from syphilitic destruction of bone and cartilage is a very frequent result of the tertiary stage of the disease. This disfigurement varies in extent and character, but is always very noticeable because of the importance of the nose in facial contour. The mental distress of the patient is usually acute, because the disfigurement is associated in the public mind with a loathesome and disgraceful disease. The fact that syphilis may be inherited or be acquired in an innocent manner avails little in the public's estimate of a person carrying ever upon his countenance the well-known mark of sexual impurity. Nearly every other lesion of syphilis may be concealed from public observation, or may at least be attributable to diseases of a less dishonorable nature. The patient with the sunken or distorted nose of syphilis has, however, scarcely any shield to protect him from impertinent scrutiny and the innuendo that his tissues are contaminated with the scourge usually due to unchastity.

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