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April 8, 1939


Author Affiliations

Assistant Physician and Assistant Pathologist, Respectively, White Haven Sanatorium White Haven, Pa.

JAMA. 1939;112(14):1333-1334. doi:10.1001/jama.1939.62800140003009a

No organ of the body is safe from infection by tuberculosis, but the relative immunity of muscle tissue in general and heart muscle in particular excites interest and speculation. Although reports of myocardial tuberculosis have appeared in the literature with increasing frequency in recent years, positive proof of the causation is often lacking and the pathologic appearance varies greatly. In the case reported, tubercle bacilli were demonstrated in sufficient numbers to identify the lesion beyond question and the mode of entrance into the heart muscle was clearly not extension from the pericardium in the usual manner. The gross and histologic characteristics were definitely those of tuberculosis.

J. M., a white youth aged 19, was admitted March 3, 1937, to the White Haven Sanatorium in the service of Dr. Edward Bixby of Wilkes-Barre, Pa. Examination revealed extensive bilateral pulmonary tuberculosis complicated by laryngeal tuberculosis. The patient's clinical course was one of