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February 1969

Splenectomy: An 11-Year Review

Author Affiliations

Burlington, Vt
From the Department of Surgery, University of Vermont, Burlington.

Arch Surg. 1969;98(2):167-170. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1969.01340080059010

Recent advances in hematology, and particularly the use of steroids, have brought about a decrease in the need for splenectomy in hematologic disorders. Conversely, the increasing incidence of high-speed automobile accidents has resulted in a higher frequency of traumatic rupture of the spleen.1 Iatrogenic injury to the spleen is a relatively common complication of intra-abdominal surgery and has not received much direct attention in the literature.

This review was undertaken to survey the problems of splenectomy and to identify the relationship, if any, between the various major indications for splenectomy and subsequent morbidity. All splenectomies performed at the Medical Center Hospital of Vermont from Jan 1, 1956, to Dec 31, 1966, were reviewed.

Results  A total of 115 splenectomies were performed over the 11-year period from 1956 to 1966, an average of 10.5 splenectomies per year. Sixty-five patients were male and 50 were female. Ages ranged from 18 months