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While the surgical principle, "Ubipus, ibi evacua," is nowadays held up more than ever before even in those parts of the human body that are accessible only under great difficulties, there seems to be some exception in regard to pus accumulations in the lungs, although they are by no means of rare occurrence. This lack of enthusiasm in attacking lung abscesses by the surgical knife is apparently caused by the widespread prejudice that they are all of a tubercular character and could consequently not be cured by simple evacuation. But while there is no doubt that the presence of one tubercular abscess necessarily presupposes the affection of a more or less extensive area of lung tissue, the nature of which would certainly be but little influenced by the opening of the single abscess, still there are many abscesses which are caused by preceding inflammatory processes, by suppurative bronchitis, bronchiectasy, etc.
BECK C. ON THE TECHNIQUE OF PNEUMOTOMY. JAMA. 1897;XXIX(14):675–677. doi:10.1001/jama.1897.02440400011002c
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