Celiac Ganglionectomy in Raynaud’s Disease

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A year ago (July, 1937) I reported in this journal1 the immediate results of bilateral celiac ganglionectomy in a case of Raynaud’s disease.

Complete relief from the symptoms was experienced almost simultaneously with the completion of the first ganglionectomy (left) and at the time the above cited article was written this relief from pain had persisted for six weeks.

In this case the symptoms of Raynaud’s disease had been present for 15 years and for five years had been so pronounced that the patient had been unable to work. The pain in his fingers was so severe that he had to resort to morphine to relieve the pain. The fingers would become red, white, and then blue, and were ice cold even in hot weather, and there was a loss of sensation in both the hands and the feet. Because of gangrene two fingers, one on each hand, had been amputated two months before we saw the patient.

In June, 1938, one year and one month after the celiac ganglionec-tomies had been performed, the patient reported that he had been symptom-free since the operation. He had had no pain in the fingers or toes even during cold weather. Even two months after the operation the hands showed no blanching after immersion for ten minutes in ice water. Physical examination revealed good radial pulsations, good skin texture, and a warm and dry skin.

Doctor Zeiter, who measured the skin temperature, reports that the two readings taken at this time were consistent. . .



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