The final test of the value of diphtheria antitoxin in diphtheria is the results derived from its use. The difficulty, however, of knowing what would have been the course of a case, if antitoxin had not been used or had been used, is so great that it is well to gather proofs from other possible sources, as well as from personal experience. Therefore, I will consider certain facts derived from laboratory experience and from statistics.
Is the diphtheria bacillus capable of growing in the human throat and there producing poisons, which when absorbed and brought in contact with the cells of the body excite processes which we call diphtheria? The truth of this is established. Personally I know of three instances in which the virulent bacillus we use in our laboratory was sucked into the mouth by mistake. In two severe diphtheria developed within sixty hours, and in the third
PARK WH. USE OF DIPHTHERIA ANTITOXIN IN THE TREATMENT AND PREVENTION OF DIPHTHERIA.. JAMA. 1900;XXXIV(15):902–904. doi:10.1001/jama.1900.24610150008001d