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December 1942


Arch Intern Med (Chic). 1942;70(6):919-934. doi:10.1001/archinte.1942.00200240003001

In May 1783, when Harvard Medical School was in its infancy, Dr. Benjamin Waterhouse presented a paper before the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. This was the first communication to any scientific body from a member of the faculty of Harvard Medical School and therefore may be regarded as an important foundation stone on which have been superimposed all subsequent medical publications by graduates of this school. At that time he said in nearly these words:

I appeal to every practitioner who like me has anxiously turned over the observations of others in hopes of finding something to guide him in a case which puzzles him to commit to writing the observations which he makes in order that an exact account of a hitherto inexplicable disorder may be transmitted to his successors.

With this precept in mind the following account of a case of polycythaemia vera is recorded. The