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May 15, 1948

Current Comment

JAMA. 1948;137(3):245-246. doi:10.1001/jama.1948.02890370027011

EARLIER DISCOVERY AND TREATMENT OF DIABETES MELLITUS  The number of latent and undiscovered cases of diabetes in the United States is much larger than formerly supposed. The United States Public Health Service about two years ago established a Diabetes Office in Boston; their survey of 3,500 citizens of Oxford, Mass., in 1946 disclosed that 40 cases of diabetes were known to the physicians in the town but that there were 30 more entirely unrecognized cases. In this country there are at least 1,000,000 undiscovered cases of diabetes and also a large number of others in persons whose diabetes is labeled mild and who therefore are under little careful treatment. The result of the lack of treatment during several years in this middle-aged group of persons with mild cases of the disease is that later they appear with gangrene and retinitis but too late for remedy. The American Diabetes Association, composed