Little has been written in this country concerning branchial cleft cysts and fistulas. Phases and fragments of the subject have been discussed in a few worthy papers. The interest aroused in a familial group of branchial fistulas recently studied in this hospital led us to feel that it would be worth while to present a fairly complete and comprehensive review of the whole subject in one paper.
Ninety case reports were studied, as well as the seventeen in our own archives. Many other case reports were not listed because of their incompleteness and because they presented nothing new.
Much of the information concerning the history of this subject was obtained from Wenglowski's extensive work.
HISTORY OF THE SUBJECT
The study of fistulas of the neck up to the presentation of von Ascherson in 1832 was in its infancy and in a chaotic state. After compiling his cases of lateral fistulas