CHARLES L. CHRISTIAN, M.D.
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Professor Jan WaldenstrÖm has recently commented on analogies between medical diagnostic terminology and botanical taxonomy (1). With both plants and diseases, a "spectrum of characters" often is common to several different entities in "man-made" classifications; in this regard, he refers to rheumatic syndromes (so-called collagenosis) as a "critical genus" within which individual species are often difficult to differentiate.
Professor Waldenström's thoughts are relevant to an article in this issue (2) concerning the coexistence of arthritis and systemic vasculitis in 18 patients seen at the Mayo Clinic over a 10-year period. Because synovitis and vasculitis are significant features of rheumatoid arthritis
CHRISTIAN CL. Vasculitis: Genus and Species. Ann Intern Med. ;101:862–863. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-101-6-862
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Published: Ann Intern Med. 1984;101(6):862-863.
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