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THE EPIDEMIOLOGY OF COLDS

JAMA. 1924;83(24):1925. doi:10.1001/jama.1924.02660240039015.
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It is singular that until recently no systematic epidemiologic study has been made of the minor respiratory ailments known as common colds. In most parts of the temperate zone they are by far the most prevalent form of disease, and they are probably responsible for a larger loss of working time and efficiency than any other human disorder. It has not been known whether all types of cold are contagious, whether definite seasonal and geographic relations exist, or what the connection may be between colds and the more seriously regarded respiratory infections, such as influenza, tuberculosis and pneumonia. Bacteriology has thus far not made much advance in elucidating the problem of colds, and it is high time that other modes of attack were attempted. Jordan and his associates4 in 1920-1921 gathered data on the occurrence and nature of colds among more than 2,300 college students in the three widely

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