Serious upper gastrointestinal hemorrhage has occurred as a postoperative complication in 2 of the last 100 consecutive subtotal gastrectomies performed at the Syracuse Veterans Administration Hospital. These cases, which are reported at the close of this article, aroused our interest in this complication. A survey of the literature revealed that there is little information about bleeding as a postgastrectomy hazard in the American surgical literature. This study is designed to determine the actual incidence of this complication and the mortality associated with it and to discuss its etiology, prevention, and treatment.
In 1946, Bruusgaard1 discussed gastrointestinal hemorrhage and reported 11 postoperative hemorrhages in 578 gastric resections, an incidence of 2%. By utilizing all available series which report operative complications following gastric resection,1-38 we have obtained the occurrence rate of serious postoperative hemorrhage. Of 10,919 gastrectomies, 111 involved serious postoperative hemorrhage—an incidence of 1%. Serious hemorrhage occurring more
WILKINS RW, ROGERS LS, STRAEHLEY CJ. Severe Hemorrhage Following Gastrectomy: A Survey of the Literature Relating to Its Frequency, Mortality, Prevention, and Treatment. AMA Arch Surg. 1957;74(3):345–350. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1957.01280090043008
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