Research Article

Decreased tuftsin concentrations in patients who have undergone splenectomy.

Br Med J 1977; 2 doi: (Published 17 December 1977) Cite this as: Br Med J 1977;2:1574
  1. Z Spirer,
  2. V Zakuth,
  3. S Diamant,
  4. W Mondorf,
  5. T Stefanescu,
  6. Y Stabinsky,
  7. M Fridkin


    Serum tuftsin concentrations were measured, using a radioimmunoassay developed in Israel, in normal subjects and in patients who had undergone splenectomy. Concentrations in those who had undergone traumatic and elective splenectomy were much lower. The tuftsin concentration in 38 patients with Hodgkin's disease who had undergone splenectomy during staging laparotomy was not significantly different from the mean concentration in other patients who had had elective splenectomy. In four patients who underwent splenectomy for non-malignant haematological disorders measurements made before and after operation showed that tuftsin concentrations fell significantly in the days after operation. The increased susceptibility to overwhelming infections of patients with Hodgkin's disease and others who have undergone splenectomy may be related to the low tuftsin concentrations. As pre-splenectomy tuftsin concentrations in patients with Hodgkin's disease were normal, the practice of performing staging laparotomy and splenectomy in patients with Hodgkin's disease should perhaps be reconsidered.