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Lester R. Tuchman, M.D.; Moses Swick, M.D.
JAMA. 1957;164(18):2034-2035. doi:10.1001/jama.1957.62980180002009a.
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While no laboratory test is pathognomonic of a single disease, the one regarded as most nearly approaching this aim is the determination of the serum acid phosphatase level. Since the work of Gutman and Gutman,1 a pronounced elevation of the serum acid phosphatase level has been considered indicative of metastasizing carcinoma of the prostate. One of us and co-workers2 have pointed out that the serum acid phosphatase level is elevated in Gaucher's disease (lipid histiocytosis of kerasin type) and described eight patients with values ranging from 4.0 to 11.7 units per 100 cc., of whom seven had values of 7 units or over. Elevation in one case of Niemann-Pick disease (lipid histiocytosis of phosphatide type) has been described in the Scandinavian literature.3

The following case of a 68-year-old man seen by one of us (M. S.) for classic symptoms of prostatism is reported. The finding of a


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