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November 1956

Malignant Tumors in Psychotic Patients: I. Studies of Incidence

Author Affiliations

Bedford, Mass.

From the Medical Service, Veterans Administration Hospital, Bedford, Mass., and the Department of Medicine, Tufts University Medical School, Boston. Physician, Medical Service, Veterans Administration Hospital; Clinical Instructor in Medicine, Tufts University Medical School.

AMA Arch NeurPsych. 1956;76(5):529-535. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1956.02330290073011

The observation that malignant tumors are rare among patients in psychiatric hospitals has been reported frequently.* More recently, however, it has been contended that the frequency of malignant tumors is just as high among psychotics as in the general population and that the previous notion was based on a misleading statistical method.† However, the observations reported in both these groups of papers were based on mortality records, and it appears necessary to check the validity of the published opinions and conclusions by studying, in the setting of a large psychiatric hospital, the annual incidence of malignant tumors, that is, the number of cases first diagnosed during the study year. The present study is, as far as it could be ascertained, the first dealing with this aspect of the problem.

Present Investigation  During a three-year period from Dec. 31, 1951, to Dec. 31, 1954, a total of 46 cases of malignant

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