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September 1928


Author Affiliations


From the Thomas Henry Simpson Memorial Institute for Medical Research, University of Michigan.

Arch Intern Med (Chic). 1928;42(3):313-321. doi:10.1001/archinte.1928.00020020001001

The cause of the anemia which appears in a small percentage of persons harboring Dibothryocephalus latus (Diphyllobothrium latum) has not received, as yet, an adequate explanation. Ehrström1 estimated that in Finland, where from 250,000 to 275,000 inhabitants are Dibothryocephalus hosts, only from 0.1 to 0.5 per cent of those infected with the tapeworm develop anemia. A correspondingly small percentage was noted in other countries. Ehrström pointed out that anemia may appear in a small, but relatively almost as frequent a, percentage of patients infected with Taenia saginata, T. solium and Ascaris lumbricoides. Piney,2 among others, noting its close resemblance to pernicious anemia, suggested that it may be a form of this type of anemia which has been elicited in susceptible persons by the toxins of the tapeworms. A constitutional predisposition plus the stimulus given by the tapeworm gives rise, in the host, to symptoms and signs which are

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