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COMMITTEE ON INTERSTATE AND FOREIGN COMMERCE

CHARLES A. WOLVERTON, New Jersey, Chairman CARL HINSHAW, California

ROBERT CROSSER, Ohio JOSEPH P. O'HARA, Minnesota

J. PERCY PRIEST, Tennessee ROBERT HALE, Maine

OREN HARRIS, Arkansas JAMES I. DOLLIVER, Iowa

DWIGHT L. ROGERS, Florida JOHN W. HESELTON, Massachusetts ARTHUR G. KLEIN, New York JOHN B. BENNETT, Michigan

WILLIAM T. GRANAHAN, Pennsylvania RICHARD W. HOFFMAN, Illinois

F. ERTEL CARLYLE, North Carolina JOHN V. BEAMER, Indiana

JOHN BELL WILLIAMS, Mississippi WILLIAM L. SPRINGER, Illinois

PETER F. MACK, JR., Illinois ALVIN R. BUSH, Pennsylvania

HOMER THORNBERRY, Texas PAUL F. SCHENCK, Ohio

LOUIS B. HELLER, New York JOSEPH L. (ARRIGG, Pennsylvania KENNETH A. ROBERTS, Alabama HERBERT B. WARBURTON, Delaware MORGAN M. MOULDER, Missouri STEVEN B. DEROUNIAX, New York HARLEY 0. STAGGERS, West Virginia THOMAS M. PELLY, Washington J. ARTHU'R YOUNGER, California

ELTON J. LAYTOX, Clerk

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HEARING DEECTS

HEALTH INQUIRY
(Nearological Diseases, Blindness)

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 7, 1953

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,
COMMITTEE ON INTERSTATE AND FOREIGN COMMERCE,

Washington, D. C. The committee met, pursuant to adjournment, at 10 a. m., in the committee room of the House Committee on Interstate and Foreign Commerce, Hon. James I. Dolliver (the acting chairman) presiding.

Mr. DOLLIVER. The committee will come to order.

I hope it will be understood that the present occupant of the chairman's chair is not the chairman of this committee. Mr. Wolverton

. was called back to Camden, N. J., yesterday, but will be back before this hearing has proceeded very far. He asked me to get started this morning, so that we would be under way by the time he arrived.

Today, our hearings are to be concerned with the problems of the neurological disorders, with those disturbances causing blindnessand later—with diabetes. The various neurological diseases are closely linked, a fact which is symbolized by the existence of the National Institute of Neurological Diseases and Blindness. We shall hear something of this interrelationship, but the hearings for each group we shall take up separately.

This morning we are to concern ourselves with the neurological disorders. Up to very recently, these medical disturbances were not conceived of as a single problem, and it may be inevitable that for some time people will continue to consider such conditions as cerebral palsy, epilepsy, multiple sclerosis and muscular dystrophy as single, independent entities. Because these are disorders of the nervous system, however, most often of the brain and spinal cord, they are intimately related to each other. As the various types of cancer or heart disease have been considered here at these hearings as either cancer or heart disease, we shall try to consider the neurological disorders together in this hearing.

These disorders (of which, I understand, there are more than 150) constitute a major health problem for the Nation. They are a leading cause of death and the most common cause of permanent crippling. Because they are such cripplers and their victims, thereby, must frequently retreat from both the economic and social scene, it is probably inevitable that none of us has really understood the full burden of these disorders as they are felt by the individual sufferer and by the community which must aid in their care and welfare. I hope we shall reach that understanding today, and I am looking to the witnesses, who have so kindly agreed to some here, to help illuminate more specifically the nature of these disorders, their costs to the coun

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try in both humanitarian and economic terms, and finally what we are and should be doing about them.

I would like to enter the agenda which will be used as a general guide for this morning's discussion, together with a list of participants.

(The statements above referred to are as follows:)

a

NEUROLOGICAL DISORDERS-AGENDA

1. Purpose of the inquiry-statement by committee chairman.
2. The status of the neurological disorders :

What are the neurological disorders ?
Mortality, morbidity figures?
Costs of neurological disorders to the Nation in terms of lost produc-

tivity, wages, tax revenue, welfare services provided by community, State

or Federal Government? Cost of neurological disorders to the individual and family in terms of

medical expenses and personal tragedy? 3. The attack on the neurological disorders :

What do we know today concerning methods of prevention, diagnosis, and

cure of the neurological disorders? In terms of the knowledge available, what medical, educational, and other

facilities and what medical manpower is presently available to deal

with these problems? What research has been achieved in the past decade to successfully combat

the neurological disorders; to what degree is new knowledge being applied; how profound is the research attack on these problems; to what

degree is manpower being available to combat these disturbances? 4. The needs of the future:

How much must medical, paramedical facilities and services be extended

to meet the problems in various neurological disorders; what is needed and what are the present and probable financial handicaps in securing

them? Promising areas of research which must be pursued, new areas of research

to be opened up in this field vitally necessary. 5. What can we do organizationally or by legislation about strengthening the

Nation's attack on the neurological disorders?

In research, research facilities, and training?
In medical, paramedical, and other services?
In education, scientific, and public?

PARTICIPANTS

Dr. Cornelius Traeger, National Multiple Sclerosis Society.
Dr. F. M. Forster, professor of neurology, and dean, Georgetown Medical School.
Mrs. Ruth McCormick Tankersley, president, the National Epilepsy League.
Dr. A. T. Milhorat, chairman, Medical Advisory Board, Muscular Dystrophy

Association.
Dr. Glidden L. Brooks, medical director, United Cerebral Palsy Association.
Mr. Karl K. Van Meter, executive director, United Cerebral Palsy Association.
Dr. Pearce Bailey, director, the National Institute of Neurological Diseases and

Blindness. Dr. Harry Sands, executive director, Epilepsy Association of New York. Mr. Carl Owen, executive committee, National Multiple Sclerosis Society. Dr. G. Milton Shy, clinical director, National Institute of Neurological Diseases

and Blindness. Dr. Frederick L. Stone, chief, extramural programs, National Institute of Neuro

logical Diseases and Blindness. Dr. Seymour Kety, Associate Director-in-Charge of Research, National Institute of Neurological Diseases and Blindness,

It is my understanding that Dr. Cornelius Traeger will serve as discussion leader for the group of witnesses. It will be appreciated, Dr. Traeger, if you will stand and introduce yourself for the record, and if the other witnesses will do the same, please. After that, Dr. Traeger, will you please proceed to develop the agenda in anyway which seems most apropriate to you?

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