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August 10, 1940


JAMA. 1940;115(6):450-454. doi:10.1001/jama.1940.72810320006010

THE THERAPY OF SUBVITAMINOSIS B1  In Collaboration with Drs. Eugene F. Traut and Regina Stolz GreenebaumSubvitaminosis B1, beriberi and thiamine deficiency are synonymous terms. "Dry beriberi," a peripheral neuropathy produced by vitamin B1 deficiency, occurs in all economic classes in Chicago. It is especially common at Cook County Hospital because of the poverty of its patients. "Wet beriberi," characterized by peripheral neuropathy and edema, is much less common. It may be overlooked because in this form the peripheral neuropathy "is so often only mild or minimal."1 Since the term "beriberi" is associated by many with "wet beriberi" of the Orient, the term "subvitaminosis B1" seems preferable for the condition as we commonly see it. Crystalline vitamin B1 hydrochloride has been named thiamin chloride or, preferably, "thiamine hydrochloride."

DIAGNOSIS  In the successful use of vitamins, as in all other therapy, correct diagnosis is essential. Vitamins are

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