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February 1980

Multiple System Organ Failure: The Role of Uncontrolled Infection

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Surgery, University of Louisville School of Medicine.

Arch Surg. 1980;115(2):136-140. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1980.01380020006003

• Multiple system organ failure (MSOF) remains a principal cause of death after major operative procedures and/or severe trauma. We studied multiple parameters in 553 consecutive emergency surgical patients to determine the incidence of MSOF, the predisposing factors to MSOF, and the sequelae of MSOF. Thirty-eight patients had MSOF; mortality was 74% for these patients. Evaluation of multiple factors demonstrated that (1) MSOF is primarily due to infection, (2) the temporal sequence of organ failure is lung, liver, gastric mucosa, and kidney, and (3) MSOF is the most common fatal expression of uncontrolled infection.

(Arch Surg 115:136-140, 1980)

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