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August 23, 1941


JAMA. 1941;117(8):636. doi:10.1001/jama.1941.02820340058021

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To the Editor:—  In an article entitled "A Simple Hemoglobin-Red Blood Cell Ratio to Replace the Color Index" (The Journal, May 17, p. 2258) Isaacs criticizes the value of the color index figure of the blood. He states: "However, the lack of single 'normal' figures for the percentage of hemoglobin and red blood cell counts, as well as the differences in males and females, has always made the number somewhat arbitrary. With the advent of hemoglobinometers in which 100 per cent corresponds to 13.5, 14, 15.6 or 17 Gm., the problem is further complicated by the difference in readings of the percentages."These statements indicate that Isaacs' method of determining the color index does not conform to that commonly employed, and because it may lead to further confusion the statements should be corrected. The color index is determined by dividing the percentage of the normal hemoglobin value calculated from the

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