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March 1978

Surgery as Cancer Cure

Arch Intern Med. 1978;138(3):496-497. doi:10.1001/archinte.1978.03630270100037

To the Editor.—  As Sadoff and Aronstam indicate,1 nonmetastatic (ie, operable) malignancies may appear with circumstantial evidence of metastatic spread, as manifested by constitutional symptomatology and/or abnormal laboratory, film or isotopic findings, which tend to dissuade the physician from definitive cancer surgery or to cause him/her to undertake same "with much reluctance."I have had occasion to review a case similar to one reported earlier,2 with identical long-term salubrious results.

Report of a Case.—  A 68-year-old woman was first seen in April 1974, with symptoms of anorexia, an 11.3-kg weight loss, and upper abdominal discomfort for the preceeding six months. Results of physical examination were essentially normal. Laboratory studies showed a mild anemia with a hemoglobin value of 11.2 gm and a hematocrit value of 34 vol%, treated elsewhere previously, without success, with oral iron. The disease was characteristic of the "anemia of chronic disease," and demonstrated normocytic,