A second preparation, No. 2282, showed a hazel-nut-sized lithopedion in the right unruptured tube, which was found in a thirty-eight year old woman who died of apoplexy.
Duverney also described a case where an unruptured tube contained a three months dead embryo. (Hennig.) Recovery may ensue when rupture of the ovisac has taken place, and its entire contents or only the fcetus escapes into the abdominal cavity. By inflammatory processes it becomes encapsulated, and sooner or later becomes shrivelled, and eventually may be calcified.
Leopold has obtained much information regarding the fate of the young fcetus by very interesting experimental work. He found that very young rabbits placed in the abdominal cavity were slowly invaded by white corpuscles, and entirely absorbed, while in older ones the soft parts were absorbed and small pieces of bone remained.
The conditions under which the fcetus is often remarkably preserved are not altogether positive. According to Albers the fcetus becomes pseudo-membranous, and connected with the vessels of organic life in the adjacent peritoneum, which necessarily leads to metamorphosis. The most famous lithopedion is the " stone child" of Leinzell, recently described by Kieser, which was due to rupture of the uterus of Anna Muller in 1674, and the child was carried until her death, at the age of ninety four in the year 1720. Virchow and Wagner have described cases in which the fcetus became connected with the maternal circulation through false membranes, and in one case was carried twenty-nine years, and in another thirty-two years. In 187˘ Professor Hans Chiari found two cases of lithopsedion in rapid succession, which he plainly demonstrated and described before the physicians of the society of Vienna. The first case was one of extra-uterine pregnancy, and the lithop.edion was carried fifty years.
The woman was aged eighty-two years, and died June 9th, 1876, from pneumonia, in the Vienna general hospital.
During life a hard tumor was noticed in the abdomen, and it was appa rently connected with the uterus. The patient said that she was pregnant during the latter part of 1827, but was not delivered of her child, and as there was no pain she did not consult a physician.
A tumor the size of a man's head could be felt in the lower part of the abdomen. The left side was very much depressed, while the right pro truded. The abdominal wall could easily be lifted from the tumor, and the latter could be moved over the vertebral column. Post mortem the tumor was found in the left iliac ossa. It was ovoid, seven by six inches, with its longest diameter parallel with the psoas muscle; the lower pole was in contact with the left wall and fundus of the uterus, the larger part of its front surface was adherent to the under surface of the omentum. The uterus was five inches long (its cervix two inches, its corpus three inches), its left horn was adherent to and seemed drawn out towards the tumor. The right tube and ovary were normal. The left tube was adherent to the anterior surface of the tumor, five inches long, and could be sounded with a fine probe. It ended blind at the site of adhesion of the great omentum with the tumor. The left ovary could not be found. The left ligamentum teres was adherent to the lower pole, and drawn out by the same.
The outer portion presented a number of bony bard points (carbonate and phosphate of lime), between which indentations could be made with the finger.
After sawing the tumor longitudinally, it was found to contain a somewhat shrunken foetus at about the ninth month of development. The head formed the lower pole with its face to the right, and was some what deformed by pressure from the knees. The external genitals, re mains of scrotum and penis, could be distinguished. The umbilical cord was the size of the little finger, and passed between the lower extremities over the face to the lower pole of the tumor, where with the aid of a micro scope, it was plainly seen to be inserted into a placenta. The placenta as usual was attached to the decidua which surrounds the foetus.
The decidua at places was tightly stretched over the foetus, and adher ent to the amnion. Such adhesion also included the left upper extremity. By these adhesions the decidua formed a fibrous membrane, one-fifth of an inch in thickness, which contained calcareous concretions.