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Mortality in acute upper gastrointestinal haemorrhage: a six-year survey from the University Hospital of Wales
  1. J. F. Mayberry,
  2. B. R. Counsell,
  3. W. J. Penny,
  4. J. Rhodes


    In a retrospective survey of normal hospital practice, 583 patients were admitted between March 1972 and 1978 because of haematemesis or melaena. Sixty (10·3%) of these patients died; most deaths occurred in elderly patients (mean age 75 years) 75% of whom had a serious medical problem which complicated the situation. Malignancy, cardiovascular disease and respiratory problems were the most commonly associated factors. The attitude towards both emergency investigation and surgical intervention was very conservative and any reduction in mortality would require a concerted effort to deal with the special problems in elderly patients who are at particular risk.

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