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December 4, 1954


JAMA. 1954;156(14):1350-1351. doi:10.1001/jama.1954.02950140050020

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To the Editor:—  "Emotional Aspects of Respiratory Disorders in Coal Miners," by Ross, Miller, Leet, and Princi, in The Journal for Oct. 2, 1954, page 484, is the subject of this correspondence. Their careful psychiatric evaluation of 40 coal miners is commendable but certainly should not be considered typical or applicable to coal miners as an industrial class. The conclusions reached by these authors following analysis of this limited group are misleading and not consistent with our own observations, which are based on a study of more than 3,000 coal workers who have been carefully observed for periods of time ranging from three months to five years. Lest some physicians erroneously apply these conclusions to coal workers as a group, we feel compelled to comment on and examine their data more critically.Ross and his colleagues report a 15% incidence of bronchial asthma in these 40 patients. This is about

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