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H. William Clatworthy Jr., M.D.; Allan G. Thompson, M.D.
JAMA. 1954;154(2):123-126. doi:10.1001/jama.1954.02940360021006.
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In 1940 Dr. William E. Ladd summarized his many years of experience with inguinal hernias in infants and children and indicated that in the absence of intercurrent disease he had operated on these young patients at any age they came to him and had no reason to regret this policy.1 Today this forthright plan is not sufficiently widely practiced, and the incarcerated and strangulated inguinal hernia is still one of the commonest causes of intestinal obstruction in infancy. In the interest of gaining more widespread and enthusiastic support for the early surgical cure of ruptures in infants and children, a study has been made of 940 patients with indirect inguinal hernia, 69 of whom had irreducible incarceration or strangulation when they came for treatment.

A small infant with imperfect obliteration of the processus vaginalis at the internal inguinal ring presents one of the commonest abnormalities of early life. Two


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