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February 8, 1941


JAMA. 1941;116(6):532. doi:10.1001/jama.1941.02820060080027

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To the Editor:—  In Queries and Minor Notes (The Journal, Dec. 28, 1940) your correspondent conveys a misapprehension of practices at Bellevue Hospital in the treatment of Negroes with tuberculosis. In the Tuberculosis Service of this institution uniform criteria are followed in all cases in the use of collapse therapy. Among these criteria is an estimate of the patient's natural resistance, and it sometimes happens on this account that collapse therapy is used earlier for a Negro than it would be for a white patient with a similar lesion. On the other hand, the proportion of cases of acute pneumonic tuberculosis admitted to this service is higher among Negroes than among white patients. It is generally understood that the indiscriminate employment of collapse therapy for such forms of the disease may be harmful rather than helpful; therefore artificial pneumothorax and other mechanical procedures, when indicated, are used with extraordinary caution;

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