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April 25, 1925


Author Affiliations

Nome, Alaska. Acting Assistant Surgeon, U. S. P. H. S.; U. S. Government Physician, Bureau of Education; Assistant Commissioner of Health, Territory of Alaska

JAMA. 1925;84(17):1290-1291. doi:10.1001/jama.1925.02660430048031

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[Note.—The following letter, written by Dr. Curtis Welch of Nome, Alaska, Feb. 16, 1925, was received, April 12. It affords an insight into the difficulties of medical practice under primitive conditions.—Ed.]

To the Editor:  —I submit the following report of the epidemic of diphtheria occurring in Nome, Alaska, and first reported, Jan. 21, 1925.After the close of navigation, about Nov. 1, 1924, I noticed that tonsillitis and inflammatory diseases of the throat were unusually prevalent. Some of the cases had the appearance of diphtheria. I have been practicing in the vicinity for eighteen years and in all that time I had not seen, nor has there been reported, a case of diphtheria in this division. Many cases were seen in this eighteen years that were suggestive of diphtheria, but time always proved that they were one of the various forms of inflammatory diseases of the throat.In

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