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It has been known for a long time that in exceptional cases an attack of erysipelas has exerted a curative effect on malignant tumors. A number of years ago Billroth reported a case of inoperable sarcoma of the pharynx cured by a severe attack of facial erysipelas. The tumor mass sloughed and the large defect healed rapidly by granulation, leaving a healthy scar upon the site occupied by the tumor. Isolated cases of this kind have been reported from time to time, but the diagnosis was not always established by sufficiently careful clinical observations and microscopic examination of the tumor tissue. The discovery of the microbe of erysipelas by Fehleisen, and the cultivation of the streptococcus upon artificial nutrient media outside of the body enabled investigators to produce erysipelas artificially in the uncomplicated form in man and the lower animals. As soon as it was demonstrated experimentally that simple uncomplicated
SENN N. THE TREATMENT OF MALIGNANT TUMORS BY THE TOXINS OF THE STREPTOCOCCUS OF ERYSIPELAS. JAMA. 1895;XXV(4):131–134. doi:10.1001/jama.1895.02430300003002
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