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Deficiency in the Prothrombin Complex with Obscure Etiology

AMA Arch Intern Med. 1960;105(6):921-928. doi:10.1001/archinte.1960.00270180099013.
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Prior to 1934, any male with a congenitally acquired bleeding disorder was promptly classified as a hemophiliac. Women were not allowed this distinction, but were merely called "bleeders." However, in 1934 there began a series of important observations which clarified the role of the prothrombin complex in the clotting mechanism and the importance of vitamin K and bishydroxycoumarin (Dicumarol). Quick and his co-workers opened up a new era in the study of coagulation by describing a simple quantitative test for the estimation of prothrombin.1 Thus, for the first time, it became possible to classify patients with the common cause of bleeding into two groups; (1) those involving defects in thromboplastin formation, and (2) those with defects in the prothrombin complex.

Tn 1941 Rhoads and Fitzhugh2 ushered in this new era when they reported a patient who had been called a hemophiliac for nine years, but the development of


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