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October 1, 1910


JAMA. 1910;55(14):1198-1200. doi:10.1001/jama.1910.04330140042013

The frequent (though not constant) association of chorea with acute inflammatory rheumatism is a well-established fact. Whether the infectious element of the latter (Micrococcus rheumaticus, streptococci) or the toxins elaborated by the suspected micro-organism are the same etiologic causes of the acute chorea it is impossible as yet to ascertain. That other infectious diseases may be followed by attacks of chorea is also well known. Whooping-cough, measles and influenza have been reported as immediately preceding the onset of chorea. All these facts are highly presumptive of the contention of some authors that chorea is infectious in nature. This presumption gains a still more solid ground if we recall the bacteriologic work of Pianese, who found in the spinal cord of a choreic individual a bacillus with the cultures of which he made successful inoculations. Micro-organisms in the brain have also been found by other authors.

While the view of infectious

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