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July 6, 1946


Author Affiliations

Medical Corps, Army of the United States

JAMA. 1946;131(10):822-823. doi:10.1001/jama.1946.02870270022008b

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The patient under discussion was kept alive for fifty-two days by manual artificial respiration, which as far as I know is a record, as well as a tribute to the courage and resourcefulness of the physician, the patient and her family, all Rumanians and having their first contact with poliomyelitis. Furthermore no literature or other physicians experienced in this malady were available for assistance, as poliomyelitis has not been common in Rumania.

The report also will illustrate some of the difficulties the uninitiated may have in introducing and caring for a totally paralyzed patient in an "iron lung," and the improvements made by trial and error to overcome those difficulties until success was obtained. Likewise a modification will be suggested for future models of artificial respirators.

S. N., a schoolgirl aged 17 years, was taken ill on Sept. 10, 1945. The onset was sudden, with headache, vomiting and a temperature

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