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October 1952


Author Affiliations

From the Departments of Surgery and Pediatrics, Guthrie Clinic.

AMA Arch Surg. 1952;65(4):557-563. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1952.01260020573008

EVENTRATION of the diaphragm is a congenital aplasia, either partial or complete, of this muscular organ. It permits the protrusion of the abdominal viscera into the chest, displacing the lung and in severer cases the heart and mediastinum. It is a condition which has been recognized for many years, since Petit1 gave an accurate description in 1774. Until recent years it has been frequently reported as a clinical and pathological curiosity. A wide variety of vague gastrointestinal and other symptoms had been ascribed to it. In a few cases surgical correction had been performed, with splendid anatomical, but lacklustre clinical, results. Occasional reports are still appearing of surgical correction, especially in the European literature.

A new conception of this anomaly came into being with Bisgard's2 article in 1947. He, for the first time, recognized that there was a specific clinical syndrome apparent in the child which was due