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May 1939


Author Affiliations

From the surgical pathologic laboratory of the Department of Surgery, the Johns Hopkins Hospital and University.

Arch Surg. 1939;38(5):955-963. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1939.01200110161013

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Wounds involving the skin and the subcutaneous tissues are readily attacked by pyogenic organisms. In the majority of cases the superficial nature of the wound, which permits adequate drainage, results in satisfactory healing. A certain percentage of such wounds, however, become chronically infected because of some complicating factor, such as diabetes, a circulatory disturbance or trauma resulting in devitalization of the surrounding tissues. The protracted course of infected wounds in diabetic patients despite adequate diabetic therapy, the tenacious infections in wounds following the excision of carbuncles and the chronic sloughing wounds following subcutaneous trauma often discourage both patients and surgeons. The use of compresses wet with hot saline solution is beneficial in such cases, but the method is laborious and sometimes fails to clean up the infection. The present study was undertaken to determine whether a simpler and more effective method of treatment could be found, which would result in

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