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August 2, 1941


JAMA. 1941;117(5):368-369. doi:10.1001/jama.1941.02820310040013

Previous to 1936, reports on the use of gold salts in the treatment of arthritis had appeared mainly in European and British journals. In 1935 an editorial appeared in The Journal1 surveying some of these reports and warning of the attendant dangers of gold therapy. Since that date communications have appeared not infrequently in domestic scientific literature. At a meeting of the American Rheumatism Association2 a physician stated that 976 out of 3,229 articles on arthritis listed in the Quarterly Cumulative Index Medicus from 1932 through 1936 dealt solely with treatment; 80 of the 976 discussed aurotherapy. The majority of communications pointedly draw attention to toxic possibilities. The more enthusiastic investigators are convinced that clinical results offset the untoward reactions; the more conservative advise caution and further experimentation and clinical investigation before deciding on the efficacy of gold therapy in arthritis.

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