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May 3, 1930


Author Affiliations

From the Allergy Department of the North End Clinic.

JAMA. 1930;94(18):1390-1392. doi:10.1001/jama.1930.02710440028009

Analysis of the vast amount of literature accumulated on the subject of essential hypertension makes it evident that many investigators share the opinion of Bell and Clawson,1 who think that a uniform explanation of this clinical syndrome cannot be upheld at the present stage of our knowledge. Regardless of the cause, however, the mechanism is generally considered to be a vascular contraction, with some exciting agent producing the spasm. Some2 assume a "hypothetic pressure substance" to be present in the blood, which contracts the wall of the arterioles. Others3 are inclined to believe in a disturbance of the sympathetic nervous system as the main etiologic factor.

While capillary spasm has thus been identified with hypertension, a number of clinicians working in the field of allergy hold that a similar mechanism is responsible for certain manifestations of allergy. Vaughan4 states that "angiospasm is the characteristic phenomen of

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