Medicine And Books

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BMJ 1996; 312 doi: (Published 16 March 1996) Cite this as: BMJ 1996;312:717

“Senor, my poor girl is turning into a dog.”

Called in for the emergency, Abrenuncio refuted the popular superstition that the victims of rabies became identical to the animal that had bitten them. He confirmed that the girl had a slight fever, and although this was considered a disease in itself and not a symptom of other ailments, he did not disregard it. He warned the grief-stricken nobleman that the girl was not safe from any illness, for the bite of a dog, rabid or not, offered no protection against anything else. As always, the only recourse was to wait.

The Marquis asked him: “Is that all you can tell me?”

“Science has not …

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