For a number of years one of us has been interested in studies on the capillaries with particular reference to capillary fragility and capillary leakage by diapedesis. It is felt that both these processes might occur as a result of an acute injury to the capillary vessels, as in scarlet fever, from long standing cardiovascular disease, or as a result of a constitutional weakness of the vessels such as occurs in certain of the blood dyscrasias.
Two types of instruments have been used to obtain an objective index of the capillary injury:
1. The positive pressure method in which a cuff is placed around the upper arm and pressure applied. In certain diseases, such as scarlet fever, petechiae occur below the cuff; this is known as the Rumpel-Leede phenomenon.
2. The suction method by which negative pressure is applied to a small area and the amount of
Cutter IS, Johnson CA. STUDIES ON CAPILLARY FRAGILITY: A DEVICE FOR THE STUDY OF CAPILLARY HEMORRHAGE. JAMA. 1935;105(7):505–506. doi:10.1001/jama.1935.92760330001009a
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