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Article
June 1936

THE SO-CALLED "LIVER DEATH": AN EXPERIMENTAL STUDY OF CHANGES IN THE BILIARY DUCTS FOLLOWING DECOMPRESSION OF THE OBSTRUCTED BILIARY TREE

Author Affiliations

NEW ORLEANS
From the Department of Surgery of the School of Medicine of Louisiana State University.

Arch Surg. 1936;32(6):1080-1086. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1936.01180240168009
Abstract

In previous communications on this subject1 we have discussed two separate phases of the so-called "liver death" or "liver-kidney syndrome."

We have analyzed thirty-four cases of this syndrome described in the records of the New Orleans Charity Hospital in the seven year period terminating on Dec. 31, 1934. In twenty-three cases the syndrome followed operation on the biliary tract; in four it followed surgical treatment for acute pancreatitis, and in seven it was associated with trauma to the liver.

We have reported a series of experiments, ten in all, in which we endeavored to reproduce in laboratory animals the clinical and pathologic processes which we had observed in human patients. Two experiments were successful:

In the first experiment, the biliary tree was obstructed for from twelve to twenty days (by ligation and division of the common bile duct and cholecystectomy), at the end of which time the obstruction was

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