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December 20, 1930


JAMA. 1930;95(25):1914. doi:10.1001/jama.1930.02720250036013

There can no longer be any doubt of the close interrelationship between the occurrence of an abnormally low content of protein in the blood serum and the possible development of edema. The latter phenomenon may become manifest under a variety of pathologic conditions, notably when certain types of cardiovascular disorders arise and they are attended with renal disorder. The studies of recent years have demonstrated, however, that generalized edema may occur in the absence of detectable primary disease in the cardiovascular and renal systems. An illustration is afforded by the so-called malnutritional edema. This was prevalent during and just after the World War in central Europe, where people were forced to subsist largely on turnips and other root vegetables for long periods. Schittenhelm and Schlecht1 studied the condition in prison camps and decided that rest and increased protein and fat in the diet relieved the edema. They estimated serum

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