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Notes on R├╢ntgen-ray injection masses.

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CONTRIBUTIONS FROM THE Z O ~ L O Q I C A LLABORATORY OF THE MUSEUM OF COMPARATIVE Z O ~ L O G YAT
HARVARD COLLEQE, NO.
237.
NOTES ON RONTGEN-RAY INJECTION MASSES
G. H. PARKER
In studying variations in the circulatory systems of animals,
it is often convenient to be able to make a rapid preliminary
inspection of the preserved material on the basis of which .a
selection of specimens for detailed dissection can be made. Such
an end can be accomplished by using an injection mass which
is so compounded as to be opaque enough to admit of the preliminary inspection by Rontgen rays and firm enough to make
subsequent dissection easy. The following four masses have
been found to meet these requirements for small animals.
No. I . This mass is a simple gelatin mass containing in suspension a sufficient quantity of bismuth subnitrate to make it
opaque to the Rontgen rays. The proportions of the ingredients
are as follows:
Dry gelatin.. ...............................................
Water.. ...................................................
Bismuth subnitrate ........................................
2 . 5 grams
.100.0cc.
25.0 grams
The gelatin is to be dissolved in the water, which should be
warm, and to this solution the bismuth subnitrate is to be added.
It is well to strain the mass through cheese cloth. If the mass
is to be kept in stock for any length of time, a small amount of
thymol or other bactericide should be added. The mass should
be injected warm enough to be fluid. It flows with great freedom
and yields a very complete injection. Its whiteness is usually
sufficiently distinctive, but it may be colored, like ordinary white
starch-mass, with carmine, Prussian blue, etc. Its chief deficiency is its tendency to separate, the heavy bismuth subnitrate
settling on the lower inner surfaces of the vessels. It must,
therefore, be thoroughly agitated before it is injected and radiographs are usually more successful if taken shortly after the injec247
248
G . H. PARKER
tion has been made than after the specimen is a week or so old.
The mass yields very sharp radiographs and is satisfactory for
subsequent dissection. The specimens should be preserved in
alcohol.
No. 2. A second bismuth mass was made from vaseline or
petrolatum t o which was added enough bismuth subnitrate to
render it reasonably stiff. The proportions were as follows :
Bismuth subnitrate.. .........................................
Vaseline. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
20 grams
.130grams
The two ingredients are to be mixed with a spatula on a glass
plate. It is well to strain the mass by pressing it through cheese
cloth. It can be injected cold, though the injections are fuller
if the specimen is slightly warmed previous to the introduction
of the mass. The bismuth does not tend to separate in this
mass as in the gelatin mass. The radiographs are sharp. This
mass, like No. 1, may be variously colored.
No. 3. The third mass was compounded on the same plan as
No. 2 except that lead chromate was used in place of bismuth
subnitrate. The proportions of the ingredients were as follows :
Lead chromate . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Vaseline.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
20 grams
,100 grams
This mass is, of course, yellow in color; otherwise it is much
the same as No. 2. In many respects it resembles the red-lead
mass described by Descomps, de Falletans, et de Lalaubie ('10).
N o . 4. Mercury was naturally among the first substances to
be used for Rontgen-ray injections. Haschek und Lindenthal in
1896 published a radiograph of the human hand injected with
Teichmann's mass the opacity of which depended in part on the
contained chalk but chiefly on the cinnabar. I n the matter of
opaqueness the great advantage of metallic mercury over its
salts was clearly shown by Braus ('96). Anyone, however, who
has used fluid mercury for injection must have been impressed
with its many inconveniences: on handling the preparation, the
mercury is very likely to shift about in the vessels and spaces,
and, if a slight rupture is made, the whole injection may be lost.
RONTGEN-RAY
INJECTION MASSES
249
To obviate these difficulties and yet retain the advantages of the
metallic mercury, the suggestion of Fredet (’00) to use mercurial
ointment was adopted. An injection mass compounded of mercurial ointment and vaseline proved most satisfactory. For a
freely flowing mass the following proportions were used :
Mercurial ointment.. .........................................
Vaseline.. ......................... .,. .........................
50 grams
50 grams
The mercurial ointment, composed of one part by weight of
metallic mercury and one part by weight of lard, is thoroughly
mixed with an equal weight of vaseline, strained, and injected
cold or slightly warmed. The mass itself is dark gray in tone
but may be colored by any of the ordinary means. It flows
freely, especially if the part to be injected is previously warmed,
gives a very sharp radiograph, and from its oily nature, can be
easily wiped from the specimen, if, by accident, it overflows.
On the whole, it is a most satisfactory injection mass for Rontgenray work.
BIBLIOGRAPHY
.BRAUS,H. 1896 Ueber ‘Photogramme von Metallinjectionen mittelst RiintgenStrahlen. Anat. Anz., Bd. 11, pp. 625-629, Taf. 1.
DESCOMPS,
P., DE FALLETANS,
G., et DE LALAUBIE,
G. 1910. Technique pratique
pour injections et radiographies de pieces anatomiques. Bull. et Mem.
SOC.anat., Paris, ann. 85, pp. 493-496.
FREDET,
P. 1900 Les artbres de l’ut6rus 6tudi6es au moyen de la radiographie.
Compt. rend. 13 Congrits internat. med., Paris, sect. anat., pp. 103-108.
HASCHEIC,
E., UND LINDENTHAL,
0. T. 1896 Ein Beitrag zur praktischen Verwertung der Photographie nach Rontgen. Wiener klin. Wochenschr.,
Jahrg. 9, pp. 63-64.
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