Medicine: 50,000,000 Hopeless Cases

Almost half of Latin America's 120,000,000 inhabitants are sick with diseases that are not incurable, but from most of which they will never recover. Smallpox has wiped out entire villages; tuberculosis, malaria, typhoid are always rampant. Hundreds of thousands suffer from exotic and mysterious home-grown ailments. Some, like ainhum or "barefoot leprosy," are lingeringly fatal.

To stimulate U.S. medical research in Latin America, Journalist Charles Morrow Wilson has published an account of its diseases, called Ambassadors in White (Henry Holt; $3.50). The book contains biographies of U.S. yellow-fever "ambassadors" (Gorgas, Reed, Finlay, Noguchi) and strange tales of native doctors. Its descriptions of...

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