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November 12, 1932

DISEASE, MEDICINE AND SURGERY AMONG THE AMERICAN ABORIGINES

Author Affiliations

Curator, Division of Physical Anthropology, U. S. National Museum, Smithsonian Institution WASHINGTON, D. C.

JAMA. 1932;99(20):1661-1666. doi:10.1001/jama.1932.02740720015005
Abstract

The subject of disease, medicine and surgery among the American aborigines is one of a peculiar interest, not merely to the medical profession but also to wider circles. The reasons for this are both numerous and important. The American aborigines are in a large measure a race of their own. They have lived long in extensive isolation from the rest of the human family, their only connections with the Old World, aside from a possible incidental advent at long intervals of a few stray sailors, being by the very narrow and far distant Bering Strait, which marks the closest approach of Asia and America. And they had been subject for a long time to environmental and other conditions which differed both from those of their ancestors and from those of other peoples. These rare factors must naturally have tended to produce, in both pathology and medicine, more or less different

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