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March 3, 1975

Polyvinyl Chloride

Author Affiliations

University Hospital San Diego, Calif

JAMA. 1975;231(9):914. doi:10.1001/jama.1975.03240210010002

To the Editor.—  The recent discovery of the association of polyvinyl chloride with primary hemangiosarcomas of the liver has received much publicity.1-3 The systematic detection program as outlined by Makk et al4 is certainly a step in the right direction in identifying the population at risk; however, as mentioned, there is as yet no specific chemical abnormality that could be used as an indicator in screening tests. Carcinoembryonic antigen and α-fetoprotein determinations have been negative in all cases of hemangiosarcomas, as opposed to hepatocellular carcinomas where they have been quite useful.5Recently, we performed an autopsy in a case of proved primary hemangiosarcoma of the liver. (The case was referred to the Center for Disease Control.) We would like to report a finding that we think could perhaps be used in an early detection system.The production of sulfated acid mucopolysaccharides is characteristic of malignant vascular tumors