JAMA 100 Years Ago Section Editor: Jennifer
Reiling, Assistant Editor.
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.
A QUEER SURGICAL OVERSIGHT.. JAMA. 2005;293(13):1566. doi:10.1001/jama.293.13.1566-b