Acute anterior poliomyelitis occurs endemically in Illinois and with greatest frequency in the late summer months. Because of the favorable reports of the results from convalescent serum therapy, the Samuel Deutsch Convalescent Serum Center1 was founded in Chicago, with the primary purpose of supplying convalescent serum for patients suffering from anterior poliomyelitis in the preparalytic or early paralytic stages. Blood for serum preparation was collected in the usual manner,2 pools of from 2 to 3 liters being prepared from 15 to 40 samples of blood.3
Because of the limited supply of convalescent serum, an attempt was made to supervise its distribution through physicians on the staff of the serum center. Cases of poliomyelitis, or suspect poliomyelitis, were reported to the serum center by the private physician or the city health department. The staff physician, equipped with the necessary materials for performing a spinal puncture and fluid examination
LEVINSON SO, McDOUGALL C, THALHIMER W. ACUTE ANTERIOR POLIOMYELITIS IN THE CHICAGO AREA IN 1931: SYMPTOMATOLOGY, CLINICAL OBSERVATIONS AND CONVALESCENT SERUM THERAPY. JAMA. 1932;99(13):1058–1062. doi:10.1001/jama.1932.02740650016005
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