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November 1925


Author Affiliations


From the medical division of the Montefiore Hospital.

Arch Intern Med (Chic). 1925;36(5):667-681. doi:10.1001/archinte.1925.00120170076006

The old blood letters were well aware that under certain pathologic conditions, notably severe diabetes mellitus, the blood may contain an excess of fat so great that, on being left to stand, a thick, creamy layer separates at the top, and that at necropsy creamy masses are found above the clots in the cavities of the heart and in the large vessels throughout the body. It was thought that the presence of such large amounts of fat in the blood stream must of necessity mechanically impede the circulation and perhaps give rise to fat emboli. Best known and most persistent of these hypotheses was the one that attributed diabetic coma to fat embolism of the brain. The untenability of this view was shown by the fact that diabetic coma often occurs in the absence of any considerable lipemia and vice versa. Though the quantity of fat in the blood may

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