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March 26, 1927


JAMA. 1927;88(13):1017-1018. doi:10.1001/jama.1927.02680390045021

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Postoperative Pulmonary Complications  Drs. Perrier and Charles Saloz recently discussed postoperative pulmonary complications at a meeting of the Geneva Medical Society. The frequency of pulmonary complications is about 7 per cent after abdominal operations, and there is a mortality of 30 per cent. Pulmonary embolus is rare in operations on the neck and limbs, but occurs frequently in operations undertaken between the diaphragm and the perineum. The lungs react by an area of congestion, infarct, gangrene, pneumonia or bronchopneumonia, processes that may be slight or very serious.Many factors have been invoked in the etiology of these complication: first of all, ether narcosis and aspiration pneumonia; yet the same percentage is to be found following local anesthesia. Lesions of the abdominal vagus are supposed to cause neuritis, which in turn reacts on the pulmonary branches of this nerve. Both causes are certain, but they are simply adjuvant; the primal factor

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