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To the Editor:—
In The Journal (181:295 [July 28] 1962), in "Five Years Experience with 5-Fluorouracil," the following observation is made by the authors: "With the added experience gained in the treatment of over 1,000 patients, we do not feel there is anything to be gained by discussing with good-risk patients the mortality rate from 5-FU therapy, for the same reason that the well-trained surgeon refrains from discussing mortality rates of cholecystectomy with patients with cholecystitis."The analogy is dangerous, unwise, and philosophically, medicolegally, and scientifically indefensible. Any well-trained surgeon will not refrain from discussing mortality rates of cholecystectomy with patients with cholecystitis. Furthermore, the analogy between cholecystitis, a curable disease, and incurable cancer is poorly drawn.The acceptance of such an observation causes me to wonder how careful editorial scanning may be.
H. R. Morris. 5-Fluorouracil. JAMA. 1962;182(9):969. doi:10.1001/jama.1962.03050480075019