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December 1935


Arch Intern Med (Chic). 1935;56(6):1171-1188. doi:10.1001/archinte.1935.00170040105007

Previous studies of the flora of diseased gallbladders have revealed the presence of a wide variety of micro-organisms. One school has placed the blame for cholecystitis on organisms of the colon bacillus group, which grow so rapidly in bile. Most writers of the older literature take this attitude. On the other hand modern observers and especially experimenters are inclined to implicate the streptococcus, which is also a common inhabitant of the gallbladder. Rosenow,1 Wilkie2 and Magner and Hutcheson3 have reviewed the recent literature on this subject and made significant contributions. It seems undoubtedly true that experimental cholecystitis is best produced by the streptococcus.

However, since the time of Osler4 a significant point has received but little attention, namely, the fact that even in the presence of severe pathologic damage to the gallbladder the bile or fluid contents are sterile in a large majority of cases. Osler

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