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April 1967

Concerning References

Arch Otolaryngol. 1967;85(4):358. doi:10.1001/archotol.1967.00760040360002

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THE GREAT information explosion has created such a premium in space that the "Case Report with Review of the Literature" of yesteryear is rarely deemed worthy of space today in a national medical journal such as the Archives of Otolaryngology. The exception is an exceedingly rare case or one that teaches an unusual lesson. In preparing his report the author should survey the previous work on his topic, if only to give due credit for originality and to avoid the error of claiming to be first when a diligent or even a cursory review of the literature will reveal that here again there is "little really new under the sun" in medical experience. Rather than an exhaustive and space-consuming listing of the literature, he should digest, condense, and evaluate previous work, citing only those few references most useful and appropriate. John H. Talbott, MD, editor of JAMA, reminds us

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