London's Pulse: Medical Officer of Health reports 1848-1972

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Islington 1861

[Report of the Medical Officer of Health for Islington, Parish of St Mary]

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on the
No. LV.
Two hundred and twenty-three deaths were registered during the
four weeks of October, an excess of 19 over the corrected mean
mortality of the month in the previous five years. The cause of this
excess has been mainly in certain chronic forms of disease—consumption,
cancer, and diseases of the heart.
The zymotic mortality, speaking in general terms, has been below
the average, and also altogether lower than it was in September. One
disease however shows a remarkable increase, both in cases and in
mortality; this is scarlet fever—the number of cases in which it
has been fatal during the month is 28, the weekly numbers being
6-3-11-8. On referring to tables of former years, it will be found that
in October 1858, the number of fatal cases was 25; in 1857, 27; and
again, 27 last year. In one family, in a highly respectable street,
where five children were from a most trivial exposure simultaneously
attacked, two died within the first two days from the primary shock of
the malady. In another family, in a neighbouring house, there have
also been two deaths. Two deaths have occurred at a house in Milton's
Yard, and one from subsequent dropsy at the Infant Poor-house. No
fresh cases have occurred in this establishment.
The weekly cases of scarlatina in the practice of the parochial
medical officers and dispensaries have been 13-9-14-12. The dropsy,

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