Within the past year, the subject of disruption of abdominal wounds has enjoyed a belated prominence in the writings and at the meetings of surgeons. Sporadic papers had been published in the leading journals, but on Nov. 8, 1933, an entire evening's symposium by five leading surgeons of New York1 was presented by the New York Surgical Society. Therein it was revealed that the incidence of this postoperative disaster was as high as 2 per cent, with a mortality rate ranging from 28 to 53 per cent.
Several of the participants in the aforementioned symposium contended that the incidence was undoubtedly higher because of the failure to recognize or record many of the cases. Similarly, Dr. Allen O. Whipple, who took part in the discussion, pointed out the inadequacy of statistics obtained from the record room as compared to those based on an accurate study of a series of