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Article
July 22, 1944

THE EFFECT OF DIGITALIS ON THE CLOTTING MECHANISM

Author Affiliations

CHICAGO

From the Laboratory of Surgical Research, St. Luke's Hospital, and the Department of Experimental Medicine, Northwestern University Medical School.

JAMA. 1944;125(12):840-845. doi:10.1001/jama.1944.02850300020006
Abstract

It has always been a source of speculation why patients whose auricles have fibrillated for many years suddenly begin to throw emboli into the circulation. There must be some other factor than the presence of stasis. Stasis may exist indefinitely without thrombus formation, and there is no reason why stasis of itself should favor thrombus formation. It is known that superimposed infection is one factor in the production of multiple emboli. However, no attention has been paid in the past to a sudden change in the coagulation system of the blood, which in the presence of auricular stasis may lead to the formation of fresh thrombi. Some of these patients have received digitalis. It is our purpose in this communication to present data on the effect of digitalis on the clotting mechanism; animal experiments were employed to confirm the impressions gained by clinical observations.

While these studies were under way,

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