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May 19, 1906


JAMA. 1906;XLVI(20):1529-1530. doi:10.1001/jama.1906.02510470043007

In a certain proportion of cases of extensive but superficial burns, death follows after an interval of from six hours to a few days, apparently because of a profound intoxication. As evidence of intoxication, we have not only clinical manifestations, such as delirium, hemoglobinuria and albuminuria, vomiting, bloody diarrhea, etc., but, more convincingly, the anatomic findings at autopsy, which are strikingly similar to those resulting from acute intoxication with bacterial products. Thus Bardeen found quite consistently cloudy swelling and focal and parenchymatous degeneration in the liver and kidneys; softening and enlargement of the spleen, with focal degeneration in the Malpighian bodies; and particularly degenerative changes in the lymph glands and intestinal follicles resembling those observed in diphtheria, which McCrae considers due to proliferation and phagocytosis by the endothelial cells of the lymphatic structures. Marked changes are usually present in the blood, consisting of fragmentation and distortion of the red corpuscles,

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