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August 17, 1895


Author Affiliations


JAMA. 1895;XXV(7):279-280. doi:10.1001/jama.1895.02430330021001g

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With every disease its etiology shows us the way for its treatment. Therefore it is necessary to recapitulate the etiology of every disease for which we wish to outline the therapeutics.

Pertussis or whooping cough is a contagious disease, which manifests itself in spasmodic cough. Although some bacteriologists have found in the sputum, bacilli, we are unable so far to determine their rôle, whether causing, accompanying or only accidental. It is a local disease of the larynx, acting upon the nerve supply, and causing spasms of this organ. The course of the disease shows three distinct phases: the catarrhal, paroxysmal and declining.

The first stage shows only symptoms of mild catarrh of the bronchi, nose or conjunctiva. Pathognostic for pertussis is only the excessive watery secretion from the affected regions. This phase lasts from two to seven weeks, with infants often a few days only.

The paroxysmal stage affirms the

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