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December 25, 1948


Author Affiliations


From the Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics, Graduate School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania.

JAMA. 1948;138(17):1216-1220. doi:10.1001/jama.1948.02900170010003

Our knowledge of the physiology of the ovary has passed beyond the original concept of a simple endocrine gland which might possibly produce symptoms by means of quantitative variations of its secretions. The advances of the last two decades have made available clinically useful preparations of the two hormones of the ovary, estrogen and progestogen. This paper deals with estrogen—the hormone of growth and preparation—the more widely employed of the two.

When estrogen first became available for clinical use, there was an understandable overenthusiasm for its application. The rational indications, however, of estrogen usage have contracted measurably following earlier empiric trials. Nevertheless, there is still much confusion concerning estrogenic dosage and the avoidance of undesirable side actions. If one depends on the beautifully embossed brochures which exhort the practitioner with every mail, one falls, unhappily, into the security of the illusion that there are neither contraindications nor side effects in

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