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Article
November 6, 1954

TONSILLECTOMY AND POLIOMYELITIS

JAMA. 1954;156(10):1010. doi:10.1001/jama.1954.02950100086023

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Abstract

To the Editor:—  The appearance of another article (Anderson, G. W., and Rondeau, J. L.: J. A. M. A.155:1123 [July 24] 1954) condemning tonsillectomy as a factor in the development of bulbar poliomyelitis still leaves open to discussion this question. In my opinion the data collected in all such surveys do not lead to the conclusion obtained. The surveys have never really utilized a control group. Invariably, the person who has had a tonsillectomy has been contrasted with the untouched patient. The tonsils and adenoids are but a part of the exposed or unexposed lymphoid tissue. They present an obvious and relatively easily eradicable reservoir of infected material in the nose and throat. If healthy tissue presents more resistance to disease or contagion than diseased tissue, persons who have lymphoid inflammation may well be expected to be more susceptible to bulbar poliomyelitis whether part of their lymphoid tissue

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