Since von Hösslin and the Russian investigators made their studies on the assimilation of foods in fever twenty to thirty years ago, very little work has been done on the subject. In the meantime, the methods of analysis have been improved and the diet in typhoid has in some clinics been increased so much that patients in the height of their fever are given more food than was formerly given in the second week of convalescence. The question naturally arises as to whether the patients are absorbing the food or are passing it undigested through the intestines.
At the suggestion of Dr. Warren Coleman who has for five years been using a very liberal diet in his service at Bellevue Hospital, I undertook a study of the question in his wards. Six patients with typhoid were studied over periods lasting from five to twenty-one days. They were fed the so-called