THE RELATIONSHIP OF ANEMIA and cancer has been a challenging problem for many years and has been reviewed in an excellent monograph by Price and Greenfield.1 in 1951, Shen and Homburger2 found that in only 33 of 113 anemic cancer patients could the anemia be explained completely on the basis of hemorrhage or blood loss. Moreover, in only 48 patients could the anemia be explained even partially on this basis. They concluded that no correlation could be established between the extent of metastasis and the degree of anemia.
Taylor and Pollack3 published evidence based on 155 tumor-implanted mice, which indicated that tumor tissue had an antagonistic effect on the blood hemoglobin of the host; the hemoglobin level was depressed by the time the tumor implants had grown to measurable size and became progressively lower until the death of the animal. These authors postulated an adverse action