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Article
May 1935

PERSISTENT ABNORMALITIES (WASSERMANNFASTNESS) OF THE SPINAL FLUID IN TREATED NEUROSYPHILIS: THEIR PROGNOSTIC IMPORT

Author Affiliations

BALTIMORE

From the Syphilis Division of the Medical Clinic, the Johns Hopkins University and Hospital.

Arch Intern Med (Chic). 1935;55(5):826-833. doi:10.1001/archinte.1935.00160230119009
Abstract

A problem of great importance in the therapy of neurosyphilis is presented by the treatment of the patient who after prolonged and intensive treatment shows persistent abnormalities in the cerebrospinal fluid. The significance of such findings is of importance to the patient and to the physician. Is a persistently positive Wassermann reaction of the spinal fluid of innocent import as is a persistently positive Wassermann reaction of the blood in well treated patients with latent syphilis, or does such Wassermann-fastness of the spinal fluid indicate that the patient is in grave danger of progression or relapse and that he must be treated for years or for a lifetime?

It is necessary to point out, of course, that in the spinal fluid, as in the blood, persistent serologic abnormalities, especially a persistently positive Wassermann reaction, may be in large part an expression of the sensitivity of the serologic tests employed. This

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