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October 21, 1950


Author Affiliations


From the Department of Medicine, University of Chicago.; Dr. McCullough is with the Microbiological Institute of the National Institutes of Health, Public Health Service.

JAMA. 1950;144(8):621-622. doi:10.1001/jama.1950.62920080007006f

Cases of rat bite fever due to Streptobacillus moniliformis have been extensively reported in recent years, and this disease has been distinguished from that due to Spirillum minus.1 Bacterial endocarditis due to S. moniliformis has been reported rarely, a survey of the literature revealing but four cases of this complication.2 An additional unpublished case has come to our knowledge.3 All these cases have ended fatally. Three of them occurred in the prepenicillin era, and two occurred soon after the use of penicillin was begun and prior to the recognition of the importance of massive doses of the drug in the treatment of endocarditis. The value of penicillin in S. moniliformis infections was experimentally demonstrated by Heilman,4 and this drug has been shown to be clinically effective by many workers.5 The present case is reported because it is the first apparent cure of subacute bacterial endocarditis

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