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April 16, 1904


JAMA. 1904;XLII(16):1026-1027. doi:10.1001/jama.1904.02490610036011

Although lumbar puncture was originally introduced as a diagnostic rather than a therapeutic measure, cases have not been wanting to show that the proceeding is sometimes followed by improvement in symptoms. It has been frequently noted during the epidemics of cerebrospinal meningitis which have occurred in recent years, that a great improvement occurred in many cases following the removal of spinal fluid, and a similar improvement has also been noted in one or two cases of spinal hemorrhage. Seiffert1 has just reported some remarkable results from the use of lumbar puncture in uremia. His experience covers only cases of uremia occurring as a complication of scarlatinal nephritis. In several such cases he withdrew from five to thirty cubic centimeters of spinal fluid with excellent results. Cases are reported with cramps, loss of consciousness and stertorous breathing, which, under this treatment, recovered consciousness in half an hour, and subsequently recovered