The Gastroenterology Unit of the Royal Newcastle Hospital treats all acute bleeders in the hospital and has followed a policy of conservative blood transfusion and early surgery directed to gastric ulcer upon rebleeding. A prospective study of 201 consecutive episodes is presented and compared with recent series treated more conventionally. Our patients were transfused less, and operated upon less often with a lower mortality rate in those with chronic peptic ulcers. The data suggest that a reversion to the less aggressive treatment policies of several decades ago, combined with early limited surgery directed to endoscopically proven gastric ulcer is worthy of trial.
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