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June 1962

Effect of Splenic Irradiation on Systemic Hematopoiesis

Author Affiliations


University of Colorado Medical Center.; U.S. Public Health Service Trainee; at present: Associate in Medicine, Hunterdon Medical Center, Flemington, N.J., and Clinical Instructor in Medicine, New York University-Bellevue Medical Center, New York (Dr. Hotchkiss); Associate Professor of Medicine, University of Colorado Medical Center,- Denver (Dr. Block).

Arch Intern Med. 1962;109(6):695-711. doi:10.1001/archinte.1962.03620180057007

Introduction  It has been known since 19031 that clinical and hematologic remissions in chronic myelogenous leukemia, a generalized disease, follow irradiation therapy localized to the spleen.2,3 The white count will fall and the hemoglobin rises. It has also been apparent that the beneficial effects of irradiation persist for some time after the cessation of therapy.4-5In an attempt to understand this phenomenon, studies of the sternal bone marrow have been made in these patients following splenic irradiation. Early observers reported contradictory results.5-9 In more recent work, a decrease in marrow granulocytic tissue10 and a decrease in the number of mitotic figures in the marrow11 were observed following splenic irradiation. All of these studies, however, have short-comings in that (1) reliance was placed upon study of bone marrow smears which do not portray accurately the structure of the marrow,12,13 and (2) patients were not

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