Empyema of the Pleura.

W. F. Hagaman, M.D.
JAMA. 1906;XLVII(1):49. doi:10.1001/jama.1906.02520010057015.
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Norwood, La., June 17, 1906.

To the Editor:  —In The Journal, June 10, page 1895, I notice that Braun, in his lecture, says that he does not think that simple puncture and aspiration will effect a cure in all cases of empyema in the pleura, and that he favors resection, etc.Regarding aspiration, he is certainly right, for it will not cure in any case. If the diagnosis is made promptly, i. e., within the first week or ten days, a simple incision under local anesthesia in the intercostal space with drainage will cure without the necessity of resection.Of course, if days or weeks elapse after the formation of pus, or if the patient is tuberculous, even after resection the prognosis is unfavorable.The aspirating needle has only one place here, and that is for purpose of diagnosis, after hich the needle should not be withdrawn, but should be


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