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October 6, 1934

Current Comment

JAMA. 1934;103(14):1072. doi:10.1001/jama.1934.02750400040018

INTENSIVE TREATMENT OF DEMENTIA PARALYTICA  The clinical picture of dementia paralytica of thirty years ago seems to be losing some of its easily recognizable features. The expansive, euphoric psychosis or the pronounced neurologic symptoms that formerly were so common are not now so frequently observed. This change may be due to the fact that the present group of patients in the early period of their syphilitic infection were treated with such effective remedies as arsphenamine and other modern arsenicals. The patient today may show behavior changes without pronounced psychoses and at the same time laboratory changes indicative of cerebral invasion by the spirochetes. Carlisle and O'Neil1 have reported ninety-nine cases of dementia paralytica, all of which presented behavior disorders and the usual neurologic and laboratory signs. These patients, mostly world war veterans, were followed up month after month for a long period, during which the changes in the clinical and

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