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Article
September 1921

BETELNUT CHEWING AND ITS EFFECTS, INCLUDING CANCER OF THE MOUTH

Author Affiliations

BANGKOK, SIAM

Arch Intern Med (Chic). 1921;28(3):252-267. doi:10.1001/archinte.1921.00100150015002
Abstract

Medical literature contains many references to cancer of the mouth in betelnut chewers. This sequence of events is cited in illustration of malignant growth developing as a result of chronic irritation (injury) of tissue. Statements regarding this subject are based largely on observations made in India, Africa and some of the islands in the Pacific Ocean. The receipt in the pathological laboratory of Siriraj Hospital of specimens of cancer of the lip from persons using betelnut, suggested an investigation of this question in Siam where the habit is exceedingly prevalent. It was soon found that the scarcity of systematic records in this country makes an extended statistical study of cancer impossible, but, as in other countries, very much that cannot be reduced to exact figures may be learned. The subject was accordingly taken up in a somewhat broader way, and this promptly led to the realization that another of its

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