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July 7, 1923


JAMA. 1923;81(1):60. doi:10.1001/jama.1923.02650010064027

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To the Editor:  —In Queries and Minor Notes (The Journal, June 23, p. 1868), emetin was mentioned as a recent treatment for bilharziasis. I worked for five years with intravenous experiments against Bilharzia haematobia in the Greek Hospital at Cairo, Egypt, and in 1915-1916 I was first to inject emetin in the veins of infected patients. Since then my colleagues there have been using the injection freely with moderate success.My experience shows that emetin or the new treatment with antimony and potassium tartrate is useful, but neither drug kills the parasite (Distoma haematobium) because we cannot use large enough doses. The fact remains that the parasite dies in about five years, if no reinfection takes place and if the patient lives under good hygienic conditions.

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