Medicine: Twilight of the Germs

For the average American of 1900, there was some disease germ with his number on it. Now, said the U.S. Public Health Service last week, more Americans survive the bugs, die of degenerative diseases of middle or old age.

In 1900, with only ten states reporting, the ten leading causes of death were: 1) pneumonia and influenza; 2) tuberculosis; 3) diarrhea, enteritis and intestinal ulcers; 4) heart disease; 5) cerebral hemorrhage; 6) nephritis (kidney inflammation); 7) accidents; 8) cancer; 9) diphtheria; 10) premature birth.

Since then, said Dr. James Crabtree of the Public Health Service, immunization has laid diphtheria low. Better sanitation...

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