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To the Editor:
—The article by R. H. Overholt, J. H. Walker, and F. M. Woods entitled "Hidden or Unsuspected Bronchiectasis in the Asthmatic Patient" in The Journal, Oct. 4, 1952, page 438, implies that bronchiectasis in asthma is not uncommon. The lack of distinction between true allergic asthma and other pulmonary diseases manifesting asthmatic wheezing has caused confusion in this, as well as in many other, publications on the subject of asthma.If we restrict the term asthma—as I believe we should—to cases of allergic asthma, the authors' conclusion does not hold true. It has been clearly shown (Waldbott, Kaufman, and Merkle: Bronchiectasis in Asthma, J. Allergy21:339-343 [July] 1950) that irreversible bronchiectasis in allergic asthma is very rare. The patients reported on by Overholt and associates had pulmonary diseases other than asthma. "Asthma" developed "following a severe respiratory infection" requiring several months' bed rest, "following the aspiration
Waldbott GL. BRONCHIECTASIS IN THE ASTHMATIC PATIENT. JAMA. 1952;150(15):1512. doi:10.1001/jama.1952.03680150066030