The experiments of Niebergall upon the circulatory system have shown that the upper and lower extremities have many times been needlessly sacrificed. It was shown by him that the resistance of the valves of the veins could be overcome by moderate arterial pressure, thus making it unnecessary to ligate the artery in cases of venous occlusion. Branne taught that the presence of these valves precluded the possibility of collateral circulation, and that ligation of the vein alone would render gangrene inevitable.
The modern methods of dealing with blood-vessels have proved beyond peradventure that many teachings concerning them are fallacious, but, like the progress in all other departments of science, many erratic steps must be taken before the goal is reached.
RICKETTS BM. FEMORAL ARTERY AND VEIN. THEIR DESTRUCTION WITHOUT LOSS OF LEG. JAMA. 1899;XXXIII(7):381–382. doi:10.1001/jama.1899.92450590011001c
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