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June 26, 1972

Fatal Embolism Following Abortion and Surgery

Author Affiliations

Woodbury, NJ

JAMA. 1972;220(13):1745-1746. doi:10.1001/jama.1972.03200130073026

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To the Editor.—  The following report is made to warn against elective surgery too soon after abortion.

Report of a Case.—  A 32-year-old woman was admitted to the hospital for cholecystectomy. There had been episodes in the previous several months of right upper quadrant abdominal pain, especially after eating fatty foods. A cholecystogram showed no sign of gall bladder function. There had been no previous significant illnesses except for two abortions for unwanted pregnancies. These had been done in another state, the last a few weeks prior to this admission.Physical examination showed a somewhat obese but well-developed white woman of the stated aged. No other abnormalities were found and results of routine preoperative laboratory studies were within normal limits.Two days after admission cholecystectomy and appendectomy were done. Slight lymphoid hyperplasia of the appendix accompanied fibrous obliteration of the lumen in the tip. The gall bladder was swollen and