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June 1928


Author Affiliations


From the Department of Pathology of the College of Medicine, University of Illinois, Laboratory of Dr. W. F. Petersen.

Arch Intern Med (Chic). 1928;41(6):913-923. doi:10.1001/archinte.1928.00130180146009

For a long time it has been known that there is a definite correlation between the peripheral leukocyte count and the various phases of digestion. During recent years, this subject has been investigated with greater interest in relation to functional pathology of the liver (Widal's hemoclastic crisis).

In a series of leukocyte counts on eighty normal persons, Feinblatt1 has shown conclusively that following the ingestion of even a small quantity of food a distinct increase in the peripheral leukocyte count resulted within from one to one and one-half hours. Bien and Variekamp,2 taking counts at more frequent intervals, have shown the details of this postprandial curve. Immediately after ingestion there is a fall in the count; within from ten to twenty minutes, this is followed by a slight rise back to normal or slightly above it. For the next thirty to fifty minutes, the leukocyte count is low-below the starting

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