Two patients developed local gangrene after subcutaneous infiltration of vasopressin (Pitressin, Parke, Davis & Company, Detroit, Mich.) utilized for the control of bleeding from esophageal varices. In the 1st patient, ischemic gangrene resulted in transmetatarsal amputation and also necessitated skin grafts on the forearm. The 2nd patient developed gangrene and clostridial sepsis and expired. The effects of systemically administered Pitressin are reviewed and suggestions to prevent local necrosis are presented.
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