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November 19, 1910


JAMA. 1910;55(21):1812-1813. doi:10.1001/jama.1910.04330210040014

FLIES AND TYPHOID FEVER  It is sometimes easier to implant a new idea in the human mind than to extract it or modify it when it has once taken firm root. The notion that bad smells from faulty sewers give rise to specific infections such as diphtheria and typhoid fever, or that piles of garbage "breed disease" are eases in point. In the public mind methods of garbage disposal and elaborate plumbing ordinances often loom large as the chief weapons of combating disease. Too often attention is diverted from really significant and tangible dangers to health by the cry that the garbage dump or the sewage manhole is emitting vile odors. It is of course well known to physicians that there is no evidence that disease can be spread by odors, although foul air may possibly impair health and render the body less resistant to disease.Many sanitarians are beginning

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