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April 1942


Author Affiliations

From the Division of Nervous and Mental Diseases and the Department of Pathology, University of Minnesota Medical School.

Arch Ophthalmol. 1942;27(4):707-715. doi:10.1001/archopht.1942.00880040083008

Ophthalmoneuromyelitis, or Devic's disease, was first described by Devic1 as an entity in 1894. It is characterized by a disease process that is relatively afebrile and strictly limited to the spinal cord and optic nerves. Because of the distribution of the lesions, the reports of this syndrome have found their way into both the neurologic and the ophthalmologic literature, primarily the latter. In the more recent literature there has been a tendency to interpret the syndrome loosely, and cases of almost any type of involvement of the central nervous system associated with a disturbance of the optic nerves have been reported as instances of Devic's disease. Because of this loose interpretation, the clinical syndrome has gradually lost many of its original characteristics. An actual discussion would, therefore, require first a most careful sifting of the literature in an attempt to eliminate the less accurately defined and the less definite

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