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April 13, 1907


JAMA. 1907;XLVIII(15):1272-1273. doi:10.1001/jama.1907.02520410048003

Although several writers had previously suggested the possibility of edema being due, at least in certain conditions, to the presence of abnormal quantities of sodium chlorid in the tissues, yet general attention was first called to this possibility by the observations and writings of H. Strauss in Germany and of Widal in France in 1902 and 1903. These clinicians observed a striking correlation between the elimination of chlorids and the development of dropsy in certain cases of nephritis, and brought forward evidence to support the hypothesis that in nephritis the ability of the kidney to excrete sodium chlorid is decreased, and that the retention of this salt in the body causes a corresponding retention of water to dilute the salt to that degree of concentration which is compatible with the normal osmotic pressure of the blood and tissue fluids. Many clinicians adopted the suggestions of Strauss and Widal as to

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