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May 15, 1943


Author Affiliations

Department of Pediatrics, Western Reserve University, and Division of Contagious Diseases City Hospital. Cleveland.

JAMA. 1943;122(3):194. doi:10.1001/jama.1943.02840200050024

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To the Editor:—  The editorial "Treatment of Cerebrospinal Fever" (The Journal, February 13, p. 516) may create an erroneous impression as regards the mortality from the disease in this country. For instance, since Jan. 1, 1937 all epidemic meningitis patients admitted to the Division of Contagious Diseases, City Hospital, Cleveland, have been treated according to the method described by Hoyne, i. e. with a continuous intravenous drip of meningococcus antitoxin and at the same time massive doses of sulfanilamide by mouth, if possible. Lumbar punctures were made only for diagnosis. In 75 consecutive cases there were five deaths—a gross mortality rate of 6 2/3 per cent; only 1 patient had a complication—loss of hearing. Among 5 who succumbed was 1 who died fifty-five minutes after admission and a 50 year old woman with diabetes and gangrene who had recovered from the spinal meningitis and whose spinal fluid, at the time

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