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April 10, 1954


Author Affiliations

205 Medical Center Bldg., Medford, Ore.

JAMA. 1954;154(15):1302. doi:10.1001/jama.1954.02940490066023

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To the Editor:—  This concerns Dr. Max Thorek's paper on electrosurgical obliteration of the gallbladder appearing in the Feb. 27 issue of The Journal. I would like to take exception to several statements and point out several inaccuracies.First the mortality following classic cholecystectomy does not remain high, "around 10%." It is probably less than 1%, and even in early surgery for acute cholecystitis it is reported to be about 1.5% for patients under 50 and between 5 and 6% in patients over 50 (Mustard, R. I., and Custer, H. R.: Surg., Gynec. & Obst.95:59, 1952). Second, I believe any tissue whether killed by cautery or coagulation will slough and will increase rather than decrease chances of secondary bleeding and infection. Certainly these gallbladders should be drained. Third, Dr. Thorek points out that it is first necessary in his technique to ligate the cystic duct and artery; therefore,

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