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March 11, 1939


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JAMA. 1939;112(10):1010. doi:10.1001/jama.1939.02800100120021

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To the Editor:—  In The Journal January 21, page 261, appears a letter from Dr. J. G. Downing of Boston with a note of warning against the use of ammoniated mercury in the treatment of impetigo in the newborn and of its possible effect of causing diarrhea. Without attempting to discuss the latter factor, I should like to suggest the use of a 1 or 2 per cent alcoholic solution of gentian violet in the treatment of impetigo. Some fifteen years ago it occurred to my associates and me that any gram-positive organism should be killed by the use of gentian violet. It was also found that the Sacharomyces albicans causing thrush was gram positive. For use in the mouth we employed a 1 or 2 per cent aqueous solution of gentian violet. Since adopting these procedures we have had practically no difficulty in curing either thrush or impetigo with

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