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December 19, 1980

The Final Diagnosis of President Cleveland's Lesion

Author Affiliations

Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania Philadelphia

JAMA. 1980;244(24):2729. doi:10.1001/jama.1980.03310240021011

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To the Editor.—  We would like to announce that we have recently reexamined President Grover Cleveland's tumor that was removed during his secret operation in 1893. As many have been aware, a controversy has surrounded the diagnosis of Cleveland's tumor for the past 80 years. The source of this controversy lies in the fact that the President survived his tumor completely disease free until his death 15 years later, a situation that would be extremely unusual if the tumor had been a sarcoma or even an ordinary oral carcinoma. For this reason, the malignant nature of the President's tumor was questioned by many over the past years, even to the point of suggesting various benign diagnoses, ranging from inflammatory conditions like a gumma to a slow-growing salivary gland tumor. To end this controversy, we obtained tissue from the Mutter Museum of the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Philadelphia.After