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July 1960

Familial Sarcoidosis: A Report of Two Cases

Author Affiliations

Bethesda, Md.

From the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, U.S. Public Health Service, National Institutes of Health, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Laboratory of Clinical Investigation, Bethesda, Md.

Arch Intern Med. 1960;106(1):64-70. doi:10.1001/archinte.1960.03820010066011

During the half-century since Boeck's description of the disease, sarcoidosis has attracted wide interest, and much has been learned about its clinical course, protean manifestations, histopathology, and biochemical and immunological abnormalities.1 However, the etiology and pathogenesis of the disease remains a riddle.2 Among others, Jaques3 and Kass et al.4 have suggested that the production of granulomatous lesions in sarcoidosis is related to an altered capacity of the person to react to antigenic stimuli. The reports of sarcoidosis in two or more members of the same family also raise the question of the significance of constitutional as well as hereditary factors in the pathogenesis of the disease. On the other hand, this familial occurrence of sarcoidosis might be considered evidence of infection by personal contact or might suggest the presence of an etiological agent in the common family environment.

Seventy-three cases of sarcoidosis in more than one member of 32 families

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