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February 22, 1890

DRAINAGE IN ABDOMINAL SURGERY.Read in the Section of Surgery and Anatomy, at the Fortieth Annual Meeting of the American Medical Association, June, 1889.

JAMA. 1890;XIV(8):264-268. doi:10.1001/jama.1890.02410080012001b

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Abstract

Drainage of the peritoneum, though one of the most important subjects in abdominal surgery, is yet one which still stands in a most uncertain position. The reason of this uncertain position is primarily a dread of evil consequences from the tube; a fear that the tube will act as a source of septic infection and death. Other less important reasons militate against the use of the drainage tube, but collectively they have but little weight when compared with the terror, which most surgeons feel, of introducing a dangerous element of septic infection in any case where a drainage tube is employed.

As long as this fear exists the abdominal drainage tube can never be viewed in a proper light. And it is one of my chief objects in presenting this paper, to attempt to place the subject in a more scientific position, by showing how groundless all such fears are, if

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