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June 2, 1945


JAMA. 1945;128(5):352-356. doi:10.1001/jama.1945.02860220034009

The relationship of gastrointestinal disorders to cardiovascular disease is an old problem, and much has been written in regard to the confusion of symptoms. Dr. Paul White in the Alvarez Lecture before the Gastro-Enterological Association in 1937 spoke of "the differential diagnosis being of never ceasing importance and interest." He in turn quoted from Liddell and Scott's Greek Lexicon, giving the following definitions: "Kardia, heart, stomach" and "Kardiakos, of the heart or stomach, dyspepsia." He goes on to say "It is no wonder we have been confused ever since."

I have reviewed a great many cases from my practice in the last ten years and have endeavored to develop if possible some practical plan to separate those with some abnormality of the digestive system from those with actual cardiovascular disease. In many cases this can be done with a careful history and physical examination. In other cases it seems plain