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October 29, 1938

THE TREATMENT OF RHEUMATOID ARTHRITIS WITH LARGE DOSES OF VITAMIN DA CRITICAL EVALUATION

Author Affiliations

BOSTON

From the Medical Clinic of the Massachusetts General Hospital, the Department of Medicine, Harvard Medical School, and the Massachusetts Department of Public Health.

Dr. Abrams was Dalton Scholar, Massachusetts General Hospital, 1935-1937.

JAMA. 1938;111(18):1632-1639. doi:10.1001/jama.1938.02790440026006
Abstract

In 1935 Dreyer and Reed1 reported that they had previously observed2 marked clinical improvement in the rheumatoid arthritis of two patients during the time they were receiving massive doses of vitamin D for hay fever. This original report and other reports by the same authors3 have resulted in an increasing interest in the value of vitamin D in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis as shown by subsequent reports.4

Knowing that generalized decalcification is a common and at times an early manifestation of rheumatoid arthritis, one might be led to suspect that the chance observation of Dreyer and his co-workers5 indicated that certain patients with rheumatoid arthritis suffer from some type of disease of calcium and phosphorus deficiency. If such were the case, then this chance observation might be of etiologic as well as of therapeutic significance. However, detailed studies of the calcium and phosphorus metabolism

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