[Skip to Content]
Access to paid content on this site is currently suspended due to excessive activity being detected from your IP address Please contact the publisher to request reinstatement.
[Skip to Content Landing]
September 1964

Gas Gangrene Septicemia: Report of an Unusual Case

Author Affiliations

Resident in Surgery, North Carolina Baptist Hospital (Dr. Canipe); Assistant Professor of Surgery, Bowman Gray School of Medicine of Wake Forest College (Dr. Hudspeth).

Arch Surg. 1964;89(3):544-545. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1964.01320030134023

Gas gangrene is a dreaded complication of severe soft tissue injuries in military and civilian practice. Its pathogenesis and typical manifestations are well known and rather standard forms of treatment have evolved during and since World War II. A high index of suspicion and careful patient observation along with early and vigorous treatment can often prevent a fatal outcome.

However, many cases of gas gangrene have been reported as occurring spontaneously or without a portal of entry. We believe this is not possible and that the pathogenesis will be evident in all cases if subjected to adequate study. The following case is one of fatal gas gangrene septicemia following minor abdominal trauma with intact skin and gastrointestinal tract. At first there appeared to be no portal of entry and this might have been labeled as another "spontaneous" case. This report is made as a reminder of the ever recurring problem