Saturday, October 02, 2010

Experiments in Guatemala

The political crisis in Ecuador has distracted from the story about U.S. medical experiments in Guatemala in 1946-48.  Here is the research paper (ungated at her website) the news stories are based on:

Susan M. Reverby, "'Normal Exposure' and Inoculation Syphilis: A PHS 'Tuskegee' Doctor in Guatemala, 1946-48." Forthcoming (January 2011) in Journal of Policy History.

She requests very specifically that she does not want anyone quoting the paper without permission, which is unfortunate because there are some interesting (and disturbing) quotes.  The basic idea was to infect people and then treat them with penicillin to test its effectiveness.

The U.S. government immediately and categorically apologized.  It makes you wonder how many other similar occurrences still remain unearthed.


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