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April 7, 1900


JAMA. 1900;XXXIV(14):878-879. doi:10.1001/jama.1900.02460140050006

There is a growing belief that there are numerous varieties of acute arthritis dependent on different causes, although the most common and the best-defined of these is that which may perhaps be considered specific and alone entitled to the designation "acute rheumatism." It is probable, also, that some of the conditions included under the heading of subacute rheumatism are really not rheumatic at all in the sense in which this term is applied to the specific variety of acute polyarthritis. In the same way confusion exists in the classification of the several chronic diseases of the joints. Occasionally chronic arthritis is the sequel of acute rheumatism; at other times it may be wholly unrelated to previous articular disease and may set in insidiously and progress slowly. Although among this latter group so-called rheumatoid or deforming arthritis is a well-recognized condition, both clinically and pathologically, its essential nature yet remains unexplained,