THE PURPOSE of this paper is to report an unusually high incidence of pulmonary embolism following venous ligation during the past year at Duke Hospital, where cases of thromboembolic disease on the surgical and gynecological services are referred to a consultant committee on thromboembolic diseases composed of the present authors.
A statistical analysis of all our cases over the preceding years is not intended in this report, since our series is similar in incidence and type of thromboembolism to those already reported in the vast amount of literature on this condition. However, during the 12-month period from July, 1950, to June, 1951, there were 50 patients with thromboembolic disease on the surgical (specialties included) and gynecological services. Of these, 43 were treated with anticoagulants only and 7 were primarily subjected to venous ligations, of whom 5 subsequently received anticoagulation therapy.
Of the seven patients who underwent venous ligation, pulmonary emboli