March 1954


Author Affiliations

Instructor in Gross Anatomy, University of Illinois College of Medicine.

AMA Arch Surg. 1954;68(3):329-336. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1954.01260050331008

THE DISEASED vermiform appendix is a common but deadly acute surgical entity. Meyer, Requarth, and Kozoll1 found an over-all mortality which had been reduced from 7.6 to only 4.3% in 5,543 cases reviewed. Collins,2 in his review of 12,813 consecutive appendectomies, reports a similar mortality. The mortality and morbidity of appendicitis persists in spite of better diagnostic acumen and therapeutic measures, including intragastric suction, intravenous fluids, and whole blood and plasma transfusions; and chemoantibiotic therapy, which have been vigorously applied in the treatment of this disease.

Justifiably, this "microcosm in which all the various diseases to which its component anatomical elements are liable in other parts of the body may occur,"3 is the subject of recent intensified study and research.4 Appendiceal disease is not to be held lightly, nor in contempt. Collins stresses that only the uninitiated views an appendectomy as mere "routine"; "the experienced surgeon

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