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August 10, 1963

Protective Role of Fever

Author Affiliations

Winston-Salem, N.C.

JAMA. 1963;185(6):545. doi:10.1001/jama.1963.03060060143033

To the Editor:—  I would like to question Dr. Barry Wood's statement in the Questions and Answers section of The Journal (184:433 [May 4] 1963): "Except in a very few situations... there is no conclusive evidence that fever plays a protective role."Some years ago Dr. Charles H. Reid, Jr., and I published report of patients admitted to the North Carolina Baptist Hospital with influenza, during an epidemic in the winter of 1943-1944.1 Our study was summarized thus:Exactly one half of the cases were sudden in onset (group A), while the remaining half began insidiously (group B).In group A an average maximum temperature of 102 F was encountered, while in group B the maximum was only 100 F. The postinfluenzal asthenic state was apparently more pronounced in group B, and at least 2 of the 25 patients

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