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February 1954


Author Affiliations


AMA Arch Surg. 1954;68(2):241-251. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1954.01260050243012

BLUNT nonpenetrating trauma to the abdomen, mild or severe, may eventuate in a serious emergency. Associated injuries, usually fractures, are commonplace. The likelihood of a concealed viscus rupture always presents a challenging problem. The sudden acquisition of such a case initiates a great responsibility, is almost certain to dislocate routine practice, and will demand maximum attendance with repeated observations. In reaching a prompt diagnosis, a preconceived composite picture of the potential lesions should be in a surgeon's mind; to accomplish early treatment an orderly program of complete investigation should immediately be instituted. Delayed therapy rapidly accelerates morbidity and mortality.

Modern motorization makes each of us a potential victim, giving this matter more than academic interest. Motor vehicles lead as the source of injury, as seen from the following tabulation:

Aviation accidents are not reported, since the majority are immediately fatal. Since half the traumas producing viscus rupture are automotive in

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