February 1956

Cough Syncope.

Author Affiliations

By Vincent J. Derbes, M.D., and Andrew Kerr, Jr., M.D. Price, $4.75. Pp. 182, with illustrations. Charles C Thomas, Publisher, 301-327 E. Lawrence Ave., Springfield, Ill., 1955.

AMA Arch Intern Med. 1956;97(2):266. doi:10.1001/archinte.1956.00250200142024

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Cough syncope is a relatively uncommon but by no means rare reaction which occurs in association with coughing. Hitherto it has been largely the private property of European physicians. Only recently has there been much interest in it in America. Derbes and Kerr set forth in scholarly fashion and delightful style the historic background, the vast clinical confusion, the multiplex theories used to explain the phenomenon, and the few and frequently discordant physiologic studies devoted to cough syncope. From their thoughtful study a clinical pattern emerges of a robust middle-aged Rabelaisian character, given lavishly to eat and drink, raucous in mirth and merriment, exaggerating even in coughing. Beyond the fact that such a person has a particular liability to knocking himself out with cough syncope which he tends to shrug off as a mere nothing we have had very little to go on. That little they have gathered together skillfully,

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