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June 10, 1899


JAMA. 1899;XXXII(23):1326-1327. doi:10.1001/jama.1899.02450500056006

The question whether acute anterior poliomyelitis is a primary degenerative parenchymatous process, or an interstitial inflammatory change connected with the vessels, has remained a disputed question since the time of Charcot. Bulow-Hansen and Harbitz1 had occasion to study two cases of acute anterior poliomyelitis, in which death occurred in one case on the seventh, in the other on the fifth day. The cases concerned young brothers, one 5 years old, the other 4; the third brother, 2½ years old, was also attacked at the same time but recovered.

Nothing definite could be found in regard to the external etiology of this small group of cases. The changes in the two fatal cases were quite alike; there was quite marked hyperemia of the cerebrospinal membranes, with some perivascular invasion, especially in the bottom of the anterior commissure. The hyperemia has spread to all the vessels in the spinal cord, and

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