From the time of the original description of the shaking palsy by James Parkinson1 up to the epidemic of encephalitis in 1918, paralysis agitans appeared to fall into two groups, the juvenile and the senile. The latter group was subject to some variation as to age, but its chronicity made the largest number of patients fall definitely in the later decades of life. Some of the early writers were struggling to probe further into the problem of its etiology, and in the pre-Wassermann days its concurrence with syphilis was noted. Eshner2 concluded that there is little connection etiologically between paralysis agitans and locomotor ataxia. Wassermann tests and examinations of the spinal fluid were not made in his cases, but he cites a case of tabes in which six months later a parkinsonian syndrome developed, the patient dying two years later of a cerebral hemorrhage. He cites eleven patients
PARDEE I. THE RÔLE OF SYPHILIS IN THE PARKINSONIAN SYNDROME. Arch NeurPsych. 1927;17(5):662–669. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1927.02200350093005
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