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[Read before the Section on Diseases of Children at Washington Meeting, etc.]
Septic jaundice is, fortunately, of rare occurrence among children, for its appearance usually betokens so profound a saturation of the system with septic materials that only the gloomiest prognosis can be given.
It is, therefore, a symptom rather than a distinct disease (though sometimes discussed as such under the title of malignant or pernicious icterus), and deserves careful study as one of the gravest symptoms of toxæmia, concerning whose exact pathology we really know as yet but little.
Schiff's experiments, unfortunately not concluded, seem to prove conclusively that the liver acts as the great depurating organ of the body, forming a definite chemical antidote, or chemically neutralizing many of the organic poisons, such as conium when taken into the blood. Malarial and septic poisons are doubtless chemically closely allied to these volatile alkaloids and similarly disposed of in
HATFIELD MP. ON SEPTIC JAUNDICE OF CHILDHOOD, WITH REPORT OF A CASE AND RECOVERY IN CHILD AGED FOUR YEARS. JAMA. 1885;IV(8):201–203. doi:10.1001/jama.1885.02390830005001b
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