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March 1965


Arch Otolaryngol. 1965;81(3):321. doi:10.1001/archotol.1965.00750050330027

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To the Editor.—In an article, "The Effect of Chlorine Bleach on the Esophagus" by G. Landau and W. Saunders in the Archives (vol 80:174 [Aug] 1964), the authors state that they have never seen a stricture of the esophagus caused by household bleach or have never read of a reported case. They further say that they treat such patients only symptomatically. From this, I presume, the authors do not scope such cases.

I would like to call their attention to an article, "Early Esophagoscopy for Diagnosis of Esophageal Burns," by Kaplan et al that appeared in the Archives of Otolaryngology (vol 73:52 [Jan] 1961) where we reported 75 cases of ingestion of chemical substances, 12 of which were household bleach. We subjected all cases to a diagnostic esophagoscopy to rule out a burn of the mucosa. We considered any lesion other than erythema a burn and treated such patients

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