September 18, 1948

Current Comment

JAMA. 1948;138(3):216. doi:10.1001/jama.1948.02900030048011

INTERRELATIONS OF CANCER AND ARTERIOSCLEROSIS  Cancer and arteriosclerosis together account for about one half of all deaths. An examination of the general characteristics and of the factors contributing to the development of the two diseases yields evidence suggesting the possible existence of certain connections between them. Cancer as well as arteriosclerosis affects most often persons of middle or advanced age. Thus, a long preparatory or latent period seems to precede the manifestation of both conditions. Clinical and experimental evidence indicates that tissue anoxia may be involved in the production of cancer as well as of arteriosclerosis. Among the various causative agents known or suspected for both diseases cholesterol and its oxidation products assume a special place. For many years hypercholesterolemia and disturbances of the lipoid metabolism associated with diabetes mellitus and hypothyroidism have been related to the development of atherosclerosis. It is known, on the other hand, that endemic nontoxic

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