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October 3, 1936


Author Affiliations

Magee Professor of Practice of Medicine and Clinical Medicine, Jefferson Medical College PHILADELPHIA

From the Department of Medicine, University of Minnesota Hospital.

JAMA. 1936;107(14):1089-1094. doi:10.1001/jama.1936.02770400001001

The problem of diagnosis in patients with long continued, low grade fever occurs far more commonly than one would be led to believe by the few studies that have been reported dealing exclusively with the subject. Controversy exists regarding the range of body temperature found in normal persons and the limits beyond which disease may be suspected. The present study deals with persons whose maximal or whose average oral temperature is higher than the accepted norm.

Since the time of Wunderlich, sixty-five years ago, many have shown that a certain proportion of normal persons may have temperatures regulated at levels slightly higher than 37 C. (98.6 F.).1 There are, on the other hand, clinicians who are skeptical of this view and believe that any rise above this level should be regarded as evidence of actual disease.2 They are correct in pointing out the danger of regarding normal hyperthermia