Reports of the alleged beneficial effects of febrile diseases on various psychoses have been current since the days of hippocratic medicine. Several methods of producing fever in patients suffering from general paralysis had already been tried when von Jauregg1 introduced the malarial method in 1917. This usually consists in inoculating a patient with malarial blood, which leads to the development of malarial paroxysms. The patient is generally allowed to have from eight to fifteen paroxysms, after which the malaria is cured by quinine. According to the recorded observations in a considerable number of general paralysis patients treated in this manner, very good remissions have been obtained shortly after the course of the malarial infection.
There are numerous disadvantages or limitations of the malarial method as a therapeutic measure. Foremost is the circumstance that the disease must be transmitted from patient to patient, as it is not practical to keep
THE TREATMENT OF GENERAL PARALYSIS BY FEVER-PRODUCING METHODS. JAMA. 1926;87(17):1394. doi:10.1001/jama.1926.02680170048016