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August 21, 1948


Author Affiliations

New York

From the Pediatric Service of Lebanon Hospital and the Pediatric Service of Harlem Hospital, Dr. Morris Gleich, Director.

JAMA. 1948;137(17):1531. doi:10.1001/jama.1948.82890510007007

Incision and drainage is an accepted and fundamental surgical principle in the treatment of abscesses and of purulent collections in the body cavities. The introduction of penicillin has modified this, so that at present drainage of the purulent material by aspiration and replacement with penicillin in isotonic sodium chloride solution has cured the condition in many instances and obviated the need for surgical intervention.

The procedure was first employed in this series at Harlem Hospital, August 1944, in the treatment of a newborn infant in whom numerous discreet nodular infections developed secondary to an infected scalp wound. Although sulfonamide drugs were administered orally for eleven days, the infant's temperature remained elevated, up to 102 F., and new nodules continued to appear. There were many nodules, and they were distributed on the entire back, buttocks, abdomen, thighs and legs. Blood cultures were negative on two occasions. As there was no response