Successful pulmonary embolectomy

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TRENDELENBURG1 in 1908 proposed the use of pumonary embolectomy and operated upon three patients who had embolisms in the upon three patients who had embolisms in the lungs, but they did not survive. The first report of a successful embolectomy was that of Kirschner2 in Germany in 1924; embolectomy was accomplished in the United States in 1958.3 Until 1961, only 23 cases of embolectomy with satisfactory outcome had been reported.4 Since the introduction of cardiopulmonary bypass, for pulmonary embolectomy, by Sharp,5 and by Cooley, Beall, and Alexander6 in 1961, an additional 24 operations have been recorded.7

Report of a Case

A 58-year-old man was first examined at the Cleveland Clinic Hospital on December 1, 1965, because of acute pain in the chest. He had been well until mid October 1965 when he began to experience pain in the right leg. He was hospitalized for four weeks, during which time venous ligations were performed as part of the treatment of thrombophlebitis. On November 27, 1965, shortness of breath developed and pain in the lower right side of the chest, accentuated by respiration. The patient was hospitalized and treated for a pulmonary infarct, with heparin, penicillin, Chloromycetin, and propoxyphene hydrochloride with aspirin.* On December 1, 1965, he had another episode of severe pain in the chest. Blood pressure was 80/26 mm Hg, respiration rate was 28, and pulse rate was 116. He was transferred to the Cleveland Clinic Hospital.

Another episode of chest pain occurred in the emergency room, and the patient was. . .



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