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November 29, 1941

The Care of the Aged (Geriatrics)

JAMA. 1941;117(22):1923-1924. doi:10.1001/jama.1941.02820480089039

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Specialization in medicine proceeds at a swift pace. Not only has the human body been subdivided into anatomic regions and disease entities, but in pediatrics and geriatrics we find the development of specialties by segmentation of the life span. The specialty of pediatrics, which may be said to have started somewhere in the vicinity of 1860 through the inspiration of Jacobi, has thus far outstripped geriatrics in importance. Geriatrics, like old Rip Van Winkle, is just beginning to awaken from a long slumber. While the renewal of interest in this subject has been ascribed to the increase in the life span, it is more likely a direct expression of the fact that medicine as a science is growing up and getting older too.

Nascher was the first to write a textbook of geriatrics. His book appeared in 1914. The first edition of this book was published in 1919. The present

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