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January 1966

Traumatic Chylous Ascites

Author Affiliations

From Surgical Service, US Naval Hospital, St. Albans, NY.

Arch Surg. 1966;92(1):115-117. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1966.01320190117028

SPONTANEOUS extravasation of chyle into the free peritoneal cavity is uncommon, but even more uncommon is the finding of chylous ascites following trauma. The rarity of this entity is emphasized by the discovery of only seven reported cases of traumatic chylous ascites in the world literature (Table). There is little doubt in the minds of the authors that more cases than these must occur, but they go either unrecognized or undiagnosed. It thus appeared worthwhile to draw attention to this unusual clinical entity by setting forth the facts concerning this eighth case of traumatic chylous ascites which occurred in a 26-month-old child. Further, this case serves to illustrate that the diagnosis can be made preoperatively and that early surgical intervention is appropriate and desirable.

Report of Case  A 26-month-old white boy was transferred to the US Naval Hospital, St. Albans, NY about 24 hours following injury. Allegedly, his 4-year-old sibling