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September 17, 1982

Dimethyl Sulfoxide: Controversy and Current Status—1981

JAMA. 1982;248(11):1369-1371. doi:10.1001/jama.1982.03330110061032

AT THE suggestion of its Advisory Panel on Medical Aspects of Sports, the Council on Scientific Affairs requested a staff report on the current status of and controversy about the use of dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO). In recent years, much controversy has been generated over the question of the safety and efficacy of DMSO; DMSO has been proclaimed in the media as a wonder drug, a miracle drug, and a medical panacea. However, it also has been suggested that it is a hoax.

The published information on the properties, actions, and uses of DMSO is abundant. It includes thousands of scientific articles from all over the world; several books; proceedings of at least four international conferences, two of which were convened by the New York Academy of Sciences; and the report of an ad hoc committee of the National Academy of Sciences. In addition, hearings of two congressional committees, innumerable articles