An important and frequently fatal complication of severe mitral stenosis is pulmonary infarction, a complication at times difficult to diagnose and to a considerable degree neglected in medical writing. Though recognized for many years, the influence of this complication on the course of disease of the mitral valve, especially in the presence of marked congestive failure, is but little discussed in medical literature. Our attention has been recently attracted to its importance by 5 cases, 4 of the patients having been seen in the past year.
In our patients congestive heart failure, though mild at the onset, became progressively worse, and despite the therapeutic measures that were employed all 5 died within a comparatively short time. We do not think that this condition is rare, for 4 of our 5 patients were seen within a period of one year in one hospital, and we have recently encountered clinically several other