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August 23, 1941

A Manual of Maladies Influenced by Oxalic Acid Poisoning viz. Industrial Myositis Fibrosa, Occupational Schizophrenia and Experimental Wassermann and Kahn Tests

JAMA. 1941;117(8):657. doi:10.1001/jama.1941.02820340079030

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The temptation is to label this badly printed booklet both as confused and as confusing. These things this book is, but deep within its shortcomings there may be some fundamental disclosures warranting more careful inquiry. The book holds and claims to prove that oxalic acid is one cause of myositis fibrosa, is in some instances a specific cause of schizophrenia and that the presence of oxalic acid in the body upsets the diagnostic serologic reaction to the point that faulty diagnoses of syphilis are made. The author's material chiefly is derived from workers of a public carrier company in Chicago, where oxalic acid was one constituent of a cleaning fluid for toilet fixtures, cuspidors and wash basins. The author's arguments are colored by unveiled antipathy for the employer and the medical activities of the staff of an unnamed hospital designated as "carrier elected hospital." He provides no quantitative evidence as

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