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November 5, 1898


JAMA. 1898;XXXI(19):1081-1082. doi:10.1001/jama.1898.92450190005002a

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Syphilis is one of that small but happily increasing number of diseases in which special medication can be confidently expected to be followed by certain benefit; its prompt and intelligent treatment, therefore, is of more positive value than is the case in diseases in which the therapy is indefinite, and where remedial agents, especially drugs, are of uncertain action. For clinical purposes the classic division of the disease into three stages is most convenient, though it seems to me the belief of Hutchinson, that syphilis is a true exanthem, running a definite and limited course, is the proper conception of the disease. Under this hypothesis the interval between the initial sore and the appearance of the constitutional symptoms is the period of incubation, the secondary stage is the time of active manifestation of the disease, and the third or tertiary stage is in truth the appearance of sequelæ, and is

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