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April 13, 1940


JAMA. 1940;114(15):1486. doi:10.1001/jama.1940.02810150072031

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The reader who chooses this monograph with the hope that it is a thorough, complete treatise on asthma will be disappointed. Much of the essential material is treated too briefly, anaphylaxis and atopy in eighteen pages, the anatomy and physiology of the lung in another eighteen pages. Some of the material included is either obsolete, for example Vaughan's hypothesis of toxic split protein products as the cause of asthma attacks, or controversial. A typical example of the latter is the unequivocal statement (page 117) "It [the active material in pollen] is a polysaccharide." This is accepted by few authorities. No mention is made regarding the obsolete nature of some of the theories or that other opinions prevail on those questions which are not yet settled. As a result the bibliography is inadequate and limited to only a few papers covering each subject discussed. In discussing the methods of diagnosis, the

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