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September 2, 1905


JAMA. 1905;XLV(10):720. doi:10.1001/jama.1905.02510100054008

The relations which exist between the breasts and the internal sexual organs, the uterus and ovaries, while apparent to every observant practitioner, so far as their modus operandi is concerned, are as obscure as ever. Aside from the gross changes in the breasts incident to childbearing, more subtle ones are present in many women at each menstrual period. The idea that such a physiologic condition might have a bearing on pathologic processes, and particularly on new growths in the breast, was first, we believe, suggested by the English surgeon, Beatson. Reasoning from analogy that if an ovarian injury in a cow would cause suppression of the milk, ovariotomy in a woman might also affect the mammary glands, he suggested castration in inoperable cases of mammary carcinoma. While the logic of Beatson's reasoning may not appeal to every one, his belief led him to carry into effect the natural deduction to

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