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April 10, 1920


JAMA. 1920;74(15):1026-1027. doi:10.1001/jama.1920.02620150034015

One of the striking differences between cancer and infectious processes is exhibited in their opposite modification by conditions of nutrition, either local or general. Ligation of the lingual artery is a classical procedure for reducing the rate of growth of an inoperable carcinoma of the tongue, but no one would recommend such a procedure in the treatment of any sort of infectious process in this location. Old age, deficient nutrition, loss of blood, chronic diseases, and intercurrent infections are all recognized as commonly reducing the rate of growth of tumors, and it is axiomatic that carcinoma in the young and well nourished is commonly characterized by rapid development to a fatal termination. Equally certain it is that the effects of these conditions on most if not all known infections is exactly the opposite of what it is in cancer. While with human cancer occasional exceptions to the foregoing general rules

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