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December 21, 1907


JAMA. 1907;XLIX(25):2087. doi:10.1001/jama.1907.02530250039003

One of the ways in which a malignant tumor may arise is through the acquirement of malignant characteristics by a previously benign growth. The formation of melanosarcoma from a pigmented mole, of an endothelioma from a nevus, of sarcoma from fibromyoma of the uterus, of sarcoma from chondroma, and of carcinoma from adenoma of the breast, are among the best-known examples of this transition from benignancy to malignancy.1 Although examples such as the above are by no means uncommon, the reverse process, that is, reversion of a malignant tumor to a benign form, seems to be practically unknown in human pathology. In a previous number2 the topic of the spontaneous healing of cancer was discussed, and in the reports gone over at that time the healing processes described were never of this type; such instances of spontaneous healing as have been observed consist in a gradual replacement of

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