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Georges Widal (1862-1929), French physician and bacteriologist. Widal was born in Algeria and studied medicine in Paris. He graduated as a doctor in 1889 and remained in Paris to work. He was appointed professor of internal pathology in 1911, and of clinical medicine in 1918. Widal's greatest contribution to medicine was the development of a procedure for diagnosing typhoid fever (the Widal reaction), and during World War I he developed an anti-typhoid/paratyphoid vaccine that reduced typhoid contagion among the allied forces. Widal also recognised the action of sodium chloride in nephritis and cardiac oedema, and recommended reducing salt intake as treatment.
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