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Tuberculosis: The Nature of the Diagnostic Problem

Ann Intern Med. 1930;3(12):1272-1278. doi:10.7326/0003-4819-3-12-1272
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It is now dawning on the rank and file of the medical profession that the diagnosis of pulmonary tuberculosis does not depend on the finding of the tubercle bacillus in the sputum. The days are over when one suspected tuberculosis, searched a few slides for bacilli, and finding none, decided to remove the patient's appendix. The realization is no longer rare that there are many cases, even for advanced ones, without bacilli in the sputum, and even without sputum.

It was comforting to have such a convenient diagnostic test as that to make our diagnosis for us and relieve us




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