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May 25, 1940


JAMA. 1940;114(21):2140. doi:10.1001/jama.1940.02810210071029

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To the Editor:—  At the time my paper on pediatric emergencies was written, to my knowledge no child with congenital atresia had ever lived, and the duration of life was usually shortened by operation. On a recent trip to Minneapolis I saw, however, a baby that had been operated on three months before and was still living. In that case a gastrostomy had been done and a catheter had been passed some little distance beyond the pylorus, followed by a tying off of the lower end of the esophagus near the bifurcation of the trachea. I quite agree with Dr. Brescia that "our task as physicians is to strive to maintain life against all odds and to aim at perfection in our work and nothing short of perfection." Since the child on whom the operation I have just spoken of was performed may live for years and since an artificial

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