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October 1955

Investigations of Serum Protein Changes in Combat CasualtiesThe Systemic Response to Injury

Author Affiliations

U. S. Army; U. S. Army
The U. S. Army's Surgical Research Team in Korea of the Army Medical Service Graduate School.

AMA Arch Surg. 1955;71(4):605-611. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1955.01270160131016

Previous studies in the disturbance of protein equilibrium following surgery and injury in man and experimental animals have shown a catabolic phase, or period of negative nitrogen balance, followed by an anabolic phase, or period of positive nitrogen balance.* The serum protein changes during the catabolic phase were described by Cuthbertson and Tompsett4 primarily as a loss of albumin and an increase in globulin. However, the procedure used was a salt precipitation technique that did not separate the a1 and a2 globulin fractions from the albumin. More recently, Hoch-Ligeti, Irvine, and Sprinkle,5 using paper-strip electrophoresis, studied the serum protein changes in a group of 45 surgical patients. Their results indicated a significant decrease in the albumin fraction and an increase in a1 and a2 globulin fractions in 80% of patients within four days following operation.

PURPOSE  The massive trauma and extensive surgical procedures experienced

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