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Editor's Correspondence
April 22, 2002

Trichinellosis Is Unlikely to Be Responsible for Mozart's Death—Reply

Arch Intern Med. 2002;162(8):946-947. doi:

In reply

I appreciate Dr Dupouy-Camet's detecting my error in dating Paget's discovery of the parasite. I believe, however, that his other comments fail to consider the details of Mozart's illness and the diversity of the clinical findings in trichinosis. The accounts of Mozart's ailment describe not only swelling in the extremities, but inflammation and rheumatism, somewhat nonspecific terms that nevertheless clearly denote the presence of pain. It is impossible to know whether the discomfort was myalgia or whether the observers, many of them laymen, would even have distinguished among such sources of pain as muscle, bone, and joints. In any event, the combination of pain and swelling in the extremities is consistent with trichinosis.

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