Experimental and clinical investigations during the past few years have definitely established the value of studies of the cevitamic acid level in blood and urine in appraisal of the vitamin C balance. While determination of the cevitamic acid level in the plasma and the urine is not technically difficult, it seemed desirable to have a simple procedure that would enable the physician in his office to confirm a diagnosis of vitamin C deficiency before it became clinically manifest (subclinical scurvy).
The values for cevitamic acid in the urine and the plasma have been shown to have a definite correlation with the degree of tissue saturation. Since the determination of cevitamic acid is dependent on the reduction of a blue dye, 2:6-dichlorphenolinclophenol, to its leuko form, the possibility of studying the reduction of the dye directly in the tissues suggested itself. While this was under consideration Rotter1 of Budapest published
PONCHER HG, STUBENRAUCH CH. INTRADERMAL DYE TEST FOR VITAMIN C DEFICIENCY. JAMA. 1938;111(4):302-304. doi:10.1001/jama.1938.02790300012004