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January 1961

Estimation of Lymph Flow in Extremities: An Experimental Approach

Author Affiliations

Halsted Research Fellow at the School of Medicine, University of Colorado, Denver, Colorado, from Department of Surgery, University of Lund, at General Hospital, Malmo, Sweden. (Dr. Jacobsson); Department of Radiology, University of Colorado Medical Center (Dr. Feldman).

Arch Surg. 1961;82(1):97-107. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1961.01300070101013

The lymphatic system plays an important role in the body circulation, but our methods for studying the system in the living organism are limited, and its physiology is incompletely understood. Kinmonth6,7 introduced lymphangiography, a method for visualization of the lymph vessels in the extremities by injection of contrast medium directly into the cannulated lymph vessel. With lymphangiography, pathological changes in the lymph vessels such as varicose lymph vessels or decrease in number of lymph vessels were demonstrated in lymphedema. The decreased capacity for flow in the lymphatic system was then explained. A method for estimation of lymph flow in the extremities would be valuable for studying this decrease, and therefore the following experimental study was performed.

On the assumption that substances with the molecular size of albumin or larger are solely removed from the extravascular space by the lymphatic system, radioactive iodinated human serum albumin (RIHSA) was injected into