Medicine: Stapling Blood Vessels

U.S. surgeons learned last week of far-reaching Soviet progress in a difficult field —the rejoining of severed blood vessels. The Russians' answer to the problem: a stapling gun.

The problem of reconnecting the cut ends of large veins and of arteries of all sizes is important in much major surgery and after accidents. It is vital in operations, present and projected, to transplant organs (TIME, Oct. 28). Although clamp's have been tried, they are suitable only in some cases: most vessels still have to be stitched painstakingly with fine thread.

The gadget, which the Russians have demonstrated in both the U.S. and Europe,...

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