Research Article| Volume 36, ISSUE 4, P555-569, October 1950

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The prophylaxis and treatment of acute respiratory diseases with anthistaminic drugs

I. Prophylactic treatment in Navy male recruits
  • The Personnel of United States Naval Medical Research Unit No. 4
    From Research Project NM 005 051.11 Research Division, Bureau of Medicine and Surgery, Navy Department, Washington, D. C., USA
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  • Author Footnotes
    ∗ United States Naval Training Center, Great Lakes. Ill. Participating in this study were CDR J. R. Seal, MC USN, Director; LT C. E. Curtis, MSC USN, Biometrician; LT L. E. Anthony, MC USN. Clinical Coordinator; LTJG H. E. K. Sweeny, MCR, Medical Officer. Male Recruits; WO R. T. Goerner, Jr., HC USN Field Laboratory; R. L. Woolridge, Immunologist; B. L. Johnpeter, Bacteriologist; and other civilian and enlisted personnel. Consultants were; Thomas G. Ward, M.D., Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore. Md.; Clayton G. Loosli, M.D., and William E. Lester, M.D., the Department of Medicine, University of Chicago, Chicago, Ill.
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      An antihistamine was used in prophylactic dosage in 352 male recruits throughout their training period. A group comparable in size and stages of training was treated with placebos, and a third similar group was given no treatment. A high incidence of acute respiratory diseases occurred in the population during the study between February and April, 1950, the majority of which were clinically classifiable as the common cold. An epidemic of influenza due to influenza virus, type A prime, complicated the study and it was not possible to effect a completely satisfactory clinical separation of all cases of influenza from other types of respiratory disease. No evidence was found that the antihistamine prevented these diseases or effected any important alteration in their symptomatology.
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