The Nation: The Miles Clip and the Close Call

The surgical procedure doctors carried out on Richard Nixon is relatively common and uncomplicated. Opening Nixon's abdomen just above the groin, Dr. Eldon B. Hickman clamped a 1½-in. serrated plastic clip across the iliac vein from Nixon's left thigh, just above the spot where a clot, discovered last week, had formed. Hickman said later that he could "readily palpate [feel]" the clot during the operation. The teeth of the clip (called a Miles clip, after the physician who invented it in 1962) were closed, creating a sluicelike effect that permits blood—but not large...

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