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March 28, 1908


JAMA. 1908;L(13):1041-1042. doi:10.1001/jama.1908.02530390039009

The relation of the liver to metabolism is a problem important to both the physiologist and the pathologist. For a long time it has been recognized that one of the functions of the liver is connected in some way with the destruction or removal of poisons from the blood, especially such poisons as are produced in or absorbed from the alimentary canal. It was early recognized that destruction of the liver cells leads to serious poisoning, and this was experimentally demonstrated by Eck, who excluded the liver from the circulation by making a direct communication between the portal vein and the inferior vena cava, an operation known as an Eck fistula. The results of this operation were the production of toxic symptoms which bore a more or less close resemblance to the symptoms of uremia, and it has been hoped that the study of the metabolism under such conditions would