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April 15, 1939

THE INFLUENCE OF MALARIAL INFECTIONS ON THE WASSERMANN AND KAHN REACTIONS

Author Affiliations

TALLAHASSEE, FLA.; ATLANTA, GA.; CHATTAHOOCHEE, FLA.

From the Station for Malaria Research, Tallahassee, Fla. (Dr. Kitchen); the laboratory of the Georgia State Department of Health, Atlanta, Ga. (E. L. Webb) and the Florida State Hospital, Chattahoochee, Fla. (Dr. Kupper).

JAMA. 1939;112(15):1443-1449. doi:10.1001/jama.1939.02800150015005
Abstract

Many contradictory opinions and results regarding the ability of malaria to provoke nonspecific, positive reactions with both the complement fixation and the flocculation test for syphilis have found their way into the literature. Lloyd and Mitra1 summarized the reports on the question of falsely positive reactions which had been published up to the time they wrote, and they added data on eighty-five cases of their own. They believe that there is no evidence that malaria causes positive serologic reactions with modern technics. In a subsequent publication the senior author2 of the former paper expressed the opinion that "the occurrence of positive reactions in malaria is partly a question of technic and partly a question of concomitant syphilis... it is only with very sensitive technics that a positive Wassermann will be obtained in malaria and even then the reaction is weak..." Kolmer3 stated that in his experience malaria,

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