The application of heat in various ways for the production of an artificial fever has been employed since very early times, and by many races, for the treatment of human disease. However, it has only been during the past fifteen years that hyperpyrexia as a therapeutic measure has been critically studied. Its use in the treatment of syphilis of the central nervous system has become an established practice, and in many instances strikingly beneficial results have been obtained in which chemotherapy alone had failed to arrest the disease. Increasing experience has eliminated much of the danger of the procedure, and the introduction of simple methods of elevating body temperature has increased its availability.
Since Wagner von Jauregg's1 original report in 1918 on the use of malaria in the treatment of dementia paralytica, a number of other methods of inducing hyperpyrexia have been introduced. Among these are inoculation with the
EPSTEIN NN, COHEN M. THE EFFECTS OF HYPERPYREXIA PRODUCED BY RADIANT HEAT IN EARLY SYPHILISWITH A DESCRIPTION OF A SIMPLE METHOD OF PRODUCING HYPERPYREXIA. JAMA. 1935;104(11):883–891. doi:10.1001/jama.1935.02760110011003