Furuta-san had been coughing for about two months,
and lately after working heavily he would tire easily, and his throat
bothered him very much. He went to Dr. Hodges, who had his lungs
examined by X-ray. The conclusion is bad. The report says
that it is active tuberculosis in both upper lobes of his lungs and has
had much headway into the lung structure. It may be cured and it
may not be cured. I have not told the worst to Furuta-san, and neither
has the doctor, but Dr. Pierce told him that the report would require
the patient to be relaxed from any work and told him that the tuberculosis
has begun. Furuta-san himself would not tell his own family he says, but
I think you should know.
If you can see any way to raise the money for
him, we are going to send him to Kerrville, and in the meantime I shall
try my best, too.
Dr. Pierce thinks that the patient should be isolated
away from the Kishi family, but it is impossible to do that right away.
Fortunately, mother and Toki-chan do not have colds or throat trouble
at the present time. I have only a head cold, though I did just
get over Laryngitis before I caught the cold. However, I think,
that since I am strong I can overcome catching Tuberculosis.
I would like to assure you of the great improvement
that Furuta-san has made. One month and a half after his first discovery
of T. B., he had another X-ray made, but this time at Orange. The
result showed that his case is the kind usually curable if the patient
takes usual care. The scars heal over by fibrosis, Dr. Barr explained
Under good dieting, rest, and tonics according
to Dr. Wynne Pierce’s instructions, Furuta-san soon began to gain
weight; that is, about two pounds a week. At this writing, he weighs
119 pounds. He is constantly thanking mother for feeding him and
giving him milk and eggs together with regular doses of medicine (tonic)
in order for him to reach his weight.
March 28, 1932, RE: Furuta-san
I wished to write you regarding Furuta-san, and
it is just as my mother wishes. He is feeling very good, and has
continued to gain in weight. Therefore, he thinks he is well, or
almost well. Since the doctor cautioned him that he would not be
able to exert himself for a long time without injury, he keeps from exercise,
but he does go around all over the house as if he did not have active
We try to keep him in his room (without hurting
his feelings) whenever an excuse offers to keep him there. But usually
he insists on staying in the kitchen during preparation of the meals,
because he is lonely, and later at meals he insists on eating in the same
dining room. However, he eats at another table away from us.
It is a recognized fact that when a room is occupied
by a T.B. patient, about the only safe thing for other people is to replaster
or repaint the walls, ceiling and floor. Probably strong fumigation
Since the time the laboratory tested the sputum
(white) and pronounced it free from tubercular germs, he had been using
the living room, and any other place freely in the home. I believe
that if his yellow sputum had been sent he would have been told that germ
is still present, because he still has a disagreeable cough and coughs
up “tan” at regular intervals.
We have not been strict with him, though individually
we use great caution about disinfecting everything that comes in close
contact like the telephone mouthpiece, etc., and the only reason we have
not told him to isolate himself in his room is that his feelings are easily
hurt, and the least bit of strictness makes him feel wounded in spirit.
However, when you return, I hope that you will
remember that some provision must be made for him. The children of the
other families often visit here, and furthermore, if Nasuko-san comes
here she might be susceptible to T.B. because I know that her near relative
has died from this disease. If we have children born to us, we would
dislike living in the same house with a T.B. patient for the sake of the
child, also. Perhaps, there might be some way in which Furuta-san
can visit the dry west, because I leave that for idea for you to give
some thought, because there might be other ideas or better development
in this case.