Endemic Goiter in Guatemala

Isidor GreenwaldNew York University School of Medicine, Department of Biochemistry, 550 First Avenue, New York, N. Y. 10016

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This paper is the result of an analysis of a publication by Muñoz, Pérez, and Scrimshaw in this Journal and of another by the same authors. The former lists the findings in 22 entire departments in Guatemala; the latter, the observations in each of the 105 localities in which the survey was conducted. It notes several inconsistencies and errors in the first paper and concludes that the statement (p. 966): “The incidence of endemic goiter in Guatemala does show a definite correlation with altitude” is contradicted by the facts.

The third paragraph opens with: “A total of 39,484 persons of all 22 departments of the country were examined of whom 70 per cent were school children, 2 per cent pre-school children and 28 per cent adults.”

The total examined, as arranged by sex and age on page 965 is not 39,484 but 39,777 (Table 1) or 39,767 (Table 2), of whom 65.4% were from 0 to 12 years old, 23.3% from 13 to 18, and 11.3% of 19 years or more.