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January 1, 1929


Arch Surg. 1929;18(1_PART_II):307-314. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1929.04420020129009

The most tormenting types of advanced cancer known in medical science are those of the tubes through which food and oxygen—the two factors that sustain life—are introduced into the system, cancer of the esophagus and cancer of the bronchial tree.

In advanced cancer of the esophagus, gastrostomy as a palliative operation opens a by-path for the introduction of food and brings to the affected area rest and the elimination of irritation, although the swallowing of the ever reaccumulating saliva down to, or past, the obstructing tumor, remains as a source of constant annoyance to the patient.

But in advanced cancer of the bronchial tree with its usual intrapulmonary suppuration there is no chance of creating a substitute entrance for the ingress and egress of the air. The rate of respiration is from twelve to eighteen times a minute and causes irritation which results in cough and expectoration The patient is

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