[Skip to Content]
[Skip to Content Landing]
July 5, 1902


JAMA. 1902;XXXIX(1):21-22. doi:10.1001/jama.1902.02480270025004

Recent contributions to the subject of summer diarrheas in children show only unimportant additions to our knowledge, but they do serve good purpose in emphasizing the preventable and curable characteristics of this common ailment which so greatly raises in summer the mortality rate of young children. The etiology involves conditions of both the seed and the soil. As Heiman says,1 humidity and heat seem to directly favor gastric and intestinal putrefactions without any single bacterium being responsible. These same atmospheric conditions quite generally give rise to another factor, namely, a lowered resistance of the individual. Holt gives the most important predisposing cause as chronic indigestion arising from overfeeding, too frequent feeding, and habitual use of improper food.

Prophylaxis of the annual epidemic of children's diarrheas involves problems of state medicine, public charities and personal hygiene. Sanitary surroundings for the poor, summer outings for the sake of purer air, beneficent