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JAMA 100 Years Ago
November 22/29, 2006

THE MIGRATORY NEEDLE STORY.

Author Affiliations
 

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

JAMA. 2006;296(20):2497. doi:10.1001/jama.296.20.2497-a

Every now and then in the newspapers there is a wonderful story of a needle that entered the body of a person many years ago and, after remaining there, giving absolutely no sign of its presence, makes its appearance at a more or less distant point and is removed. The favorite newspaper item is that it entered a finger of one hand and came out of one of the fingers of the other. When a really talented correspondent reports the story the needle always comes out of the finger corresponding to the one which it entered on the other side. Occasionally, as was recently the case in the New York Herald, a correspondent suggests that such migrations deserve careful study, because they may point to some law of circulation within the tissues as yet imperfectly understood or perhaps not even guessed at in present-day medicine.

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