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October 5, 1912


JAMA. 1912;LIX(14):1290. doi:10.1001/jama.1912.04270100058024

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The patient, R. G., was a healthy boy of 5 years. Parents were living and well. Patient had had mumps at 4 years and measles at 3 years; no other illness. This summer he had not slept well and the mother believed that the child might have worms. On the advice of a friend the mother decided to administer a salt enema. The suggestion had been to use one tablespoonful in a quart of water, but she misunderstood and used one pound of salt in a quart of water.

The enema was given at 5 p. m., July 13. In from five to ten minutes the child cried, with severe pains in head, became intensely thirsty, vomited violently, and soon began to purge violently; within thirty minutes he became unconscious and had one convulsion after another. I saw him at 6:30 p. m. and found him unconscious and unable to

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