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May 21, 1927


Author Affiliations

Lieutenant Colonel, Medical Corps, United States Army MANILA, P. I.
From the U. S. Army Board for Medical Research, Manila, P. I.

JAMA. 1927;88(21):1627-1629. doi:10.1001/jama.1927.02680470013007

Hoffman, 1 as the result of a very extensive survey of the mortality statistics of cancer in all parts of the world, has drawn the conclusion that cancer is exceedingly rare in primitive races, and that it is a disease of civilized peoples and in a special sense is the result of present day conditions of life.

This conclusion differs radically from the statements of numerous observers among various Oriental races who have found malignant tumors to be fairly common. Thus Madden, 2 professor of surgery at the government school of medicine at Cairo, writes: "Malignant disease among tropical and semitropical peoples, even in the black races, is much more common than is generally believed, as figures prepared for the Cancer Research Committee show. With the Oriental and tropical precocity in development, malignant disease often appears at a very early age; epithelioma of the tongue for instance at the age