IT IS not uncommon to encounter a hemorrhagic tendency in some patients afflicted with certain virus infections. In the majority of these patients the hemorrhagic phenomena are mild, but in a few they may be severe and present the major problem for the clinician. It is the purpose of this survey to present the evidence that indicates that the cause of the bleeding tendency in these infections is disseminated intravascular coagulation. The importance of this observation lies in the fact that the appropriate use of anticoagulant therapy has reduced the morbidity and mortality in certain of these infections, and the possibility exists that its use in the others may prove equally beneficial.
In order to place these diseases in proper perspective, a brief summary of the phenomenon of disseminated intravascular coagulation is presented first.
Disseminated intravascular coagulation is an intermediary pathogenetic mechanism in disease processes due to a wide variety