Volume 24, Issue 4 (October 1979)
Sudden Death and Sepsis After Splenectomy
There have been a number of case reports dealing with pneumococcal infections after splenectomy [1,2]. Early reports emphasized that fatal infections occurred in patients with a basic underlying serious disease process that involved primarily the reticuloendothelial system such as in diffuse cancer or lymphoma, histiocytosis, sickle cell anemia, and extensive hemosiderosis . It was generally believed that splenectomy done for trauma imparted no greater risk to infection than a simple appendectomy , Since that time, follow-up studies have shown that asplenic patients are at risk from overwhelming sepsis regardless of the reason for the removal of the spleen .