The question of the existence of a so-called primary or hematogenous form of peritonitis has long been debated. Up to the present time, no definite conclusions have been reached. During the past year several children were admitted to the Sarah Morris Hospital who subsequently came to autopsy with the clinical diagnosis of hematogenous peritonitis. In every case the postmortem examination revealed a definite origin for the inflammation of the peritoneum within the peritoneal cavity. In reality, the peritonitis was secondary to such a focus. The discrepancy in each of these cases between the clinical concept of the origin of the peritonitis and the true origin as revealed by the autopsy prompted us to a study of this form of peritonitis.
The work presented in this paper was undertaken, first, with the view of clarifying our own ideas as to what is meant by the terms "primary" and "hematogenous peritonitis" as