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JAMA 100 Years Ago
April 6, 2005


Author Affiliations

JAMA 100 Years Ago Section Editor: Jennifer Reiling, Assistant Editor.

JAMA. 2005;293(13):1566. doi:10.1001/jama.293.13.1566-b

Such surgical accidents as the leaving of a forceps or a sponge in the abdomen during laparotomy are by no means unknown and every careful surgeon is alert to avoid them. The most remarkable accidental inclusion, however, is reported from Paris, where a young woman has started legal proceedings on account of the finding of a pair of noseglasses in her abdomen. It appears that a laparotomy was performed on her in America and, her condition not being improved, a second one was performed in Germany. Still later the French physicians had the last innings and removed the eyeglasses from their peculiar position. The question is, who left them there? The natural presumption is that if they were left there at the first operation they should have been found at the second. There would seem to be a good chance for determining the question by testing the respective operators’ eyes. While we comment on the matter, we do not vouch for the occurrence, as we have only the newspapers for our authority; no mention is made of it in our foreign exchanges.

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