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January 10, 1903


Author Affiliations

Professor of Clinical Medicine in the Philadelphia Polyclinic; Physician to the Philadelphia Hospital; Assistant Physician to the Philadelphia Orthopedic Hospital and Infirmary for Nervous Diseases; Physician to the Hospital for Diseases of the Lungs at Chestnut Hill. PHILADELPHIA.

JAMA. 1903;XL(2):88-90. doi:10.1001/jama.1903.92490020020001f

Our knowledge of neuritis is of but comparatively recent date. In fact, one of the earliest systematic studies of the subject was made by three American physicians, namely, Mitchell, Morehouse and Keen, whose observations on traumatic neuritis during and following the Civil War have become classical. Isolated cases of neuritis due to other causes had been reported previously, but their nature was not clearly understood and many of them were considered examples of anterior poliomyelitis or spinal muscular atrophy. It was not, however, until 1880 that, largely as a result of the labors of Leyden and others, the clinical and anatomic picture of polyneuritis was established. The etiologic diversity was at the same time recognized and the clinical variability later pointed out. Still more recently the conception of the neuron, comprising the ganglion-cell and its peripheral processes as one continuous whole, has helped to explain on the one

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