October 6, 1934


JAMA. 1934;103(14):1066-1067. doi:10.1001/jama.1934.72750400008011

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THERAPY OF CARBUNCLE  Carbuncle is a deep seated intradermal staphylococcic infection, which differs from furuncle (q. v.) in being characterized by multiple foci of necrosis and terminating in gangrene. Because of radical difference of treatment, malignant pustule, or anthrax (q. v.), must be differentiated from carbuncle. Anthrax is characterized by the early formation of a blister and of a hard, black, painless and insensitive slough that becomes surrounded by a halo of vesicles, in the fluid of which smears show anthrax bacilli. History of exposure to infected animals or animal products may lead to suspicion of anthrax.

LOCAL TREATMENT OF CARBUNCLE  There is no use in wasting time with hot moist dressings. Possibly roentgen irradiation (300 roentgens, 140 kilovolts, with a filter of 0.25 mm. of copper and 1 mm. of aluminum) may be of value if the case does not seem ripe for radical treatment.

Surgical Treatment.  Crucial incisions

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