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"WMS: Snow comments on scarlet fever"

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(4 November 1848)

PDF courtesy of Elsevier, via Emory University Libraries.

The minutes of the 4 November 1848 meeting of the Westminster Medical Society appeared in the Lancet 2 (18 November 1848): 556-57.

The main feature of the meeting was a paper on "Scarlatina" by Mr. I. B. Brown.

Snow was the second to comment:

"Dr. Snow considered that the kidney was liable, as well as the skin and tonsils, to partake of the primary affection of scarlet fever, and this was apt to be followed by secondary effects at the end of two or three weeks, probably analogous to the desquamation of the cuticle, which led to congestion of its vessels, and obstruction to its secreting functions. This diseased state of the kidneys caused dropsy, and often inflammation of the serous membranes, and sometimes renal convulsions. Dropsy, if confined to the cellular tissue, or to this and the peritonæum, was not so serious as the other results of the [556/557] renal affection, and was amenable to treatment. He had seen no case of dropsy after scarlet fever, except where there was evidence of interrupted function of the kidney, and the renal affection preceded the anasarca. It was then only seventeen days since the commencement of one of the cases Mr. Brown had related, and the most frequent time for the appearance of dropsy was about twenty-one days from the beginning of the fever, therefore it yet remained to be seen whether this patient was out of danger, and Mr. Brown might have dismissed other cases who might subsequently have had renal affections."

[The PDF contains the minutes, as published, in their entirety. But only the transcription of Snow's remarks are included in the data base for the Search Document function in KORA.]

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