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April 23, 1904


JAMA. 1904;XLII(17):1081. doi:10.1001/jama.1904.02490620023003

Cellular activity underlies all function, so that derangement of the latter necessarily implies alteration in structure. This alteration may be molecular, and thus not permanent or demonstrable, but it may be of any degree to the point of organic disease obvious to the naked eye. In the group of disorders designated functional, it is certain that changes occur which escape detection only because of the inadequacy of our best means of investigation, but even this group has gradually been reduced in number by the discovery of lesions with the aid of more refined modern methods. Thus some cases of epilepsy are obtrusively dependent on organic or structural alterations, and the view is gaining ground that other cases are due to changes of only a less coarse nature. It has been shown further that many toxic processes are attended with cellular changes, which, it may be conceived, if long continued or