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February 24, 1912


JAMA. 1912;LVIII(8):546-547. doi:10.1001/jama.1912.04260020230006

Much has been written concerning the cause of scarlet fever during the past two decades and a vast amount of research has been pursued in order to ascertain a possible etiologic agency for the disease.

In spite of the writings and the necessarily preceding researches our knowledge is essentially the same as when the studies were first undertaken. In practically all of the work one organism has sooner or later been encountered by all workers, the streptococcus. A few seem to consider this to be a sufficient cause, but the majority look on it as a secondary infecting organism. More are probably inclined to consider the peculiar bodies described by Mallory and named by him Cyclaster scarlatinale to be an adequate explanation of the various phenomena. However this may be, we must decide that at present the cause of the disease is not definitely known.

Recognizing the almost constant association

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