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To the Editor:—
In the article "Where Are the Cases of Radium Poisoning," by S. D. Clark (J. A. M. A.168:761-762 [Oct 11] 1958), spontaneous fractures, osteogenic sarcoma, and neoplasms of the paranasal sinuses are mentioned as signs of radium poisoning. Although brief mention is also made of roentgenological changes and trouble with teeth, the characteristic production of radiation osteitis and focal necrosis of teeth is of more than passing importance. Radiation osteitis has been found to affect the bone of the mandible and maxilla in a large proportion of the radium-dial workers I have examined. The findings on roentgenograms are similar to those of osteitis deformans (closely distributed areas of osteosclerosis interspersed with areas of osteoporosis). The alveolar processes of the jaw bones are affected more often than other bone because of their metabolic activity. Focal necrosis of the teeth also seen on roentgenological examination resembles dental
Dalitsch WW. RADIUM POISONING. JAMA. 1958;168(14):1929. doi:10.1001/jama.1958.03000140091023