cirrhosis of liver, sup. fragmented

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janac

Senior Member
English
This is a death certificate for a man in the United States. The primary cause of death is cirrhosis of liver, with a contributing condition. It looks like "Sup. fragmented ___________ ."

Any medical doctors out there or nurses who can read this?

Any suggestions gratefully appreciated.

cause of death clip.jpg
 
  • Andygc

    Senior Member
    British English
    Just because some doctors have an ingrained inability to write clearly, please don't expect others to be able to decipher this scrawl. :eek:
     
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    Andygc

    Senior Member
    British English
    Sorry, I should have said that the one thing it certainly isn't is "fragmented", but that's not because of the shape of the scrawl, it's just not a plausible word to see used in a secondary cause of death. "Sup." would normally mean "Superior".
     

    Myridon

    Senior Member
    English - US
    Writing styles vary over time, then as people age, they develop their own idiosyncracies.
    I have deciphered old census forms sometimes only because there is a large sample of the census taker's handwriting. When there's an odd name, I can find known names with the same scribbles. I see "blob" and find a William and figure out that that "blob" is "W-blob-m-blob" and so on.
    The first word might also be "Suf." - perhaps "suffered"?
    It would help to see more of the form and know the year.
     

    kentix

    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    Could the last word possibly be "bleeds". I realize it doesn't particularly look like a "d". Whatever it was, it looks like it lasted about a month.
     
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    janac

    Senior Member
    English
    My thanks to everyone for taking the time to take a look. Now I know for sure, it's not me, it's the "scrawl."

    I've been reading on cirrhosis of the liver, and one of the most common causes is hepatitis. Perhaps what I thought was "sup." is actually "hep." for hepatitis.

    I'm definitely using the "blob" approach, it looks like the second word might contain something like "molio," "molo" or "nolo."

    The year of death is 1928, and the state is Texas.

    I apologize for the tiny sample. I've shown only the part I need to decipher, because I'm really nervous about posting very sensitive personal documents like this one online. It probably wouldn't help anyway, because it's obvious that the person who wrote the cause of death did not fill out the rest of the form. Just those two lines for the cause of death.
     
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    Roxxxannne

    Senior Member
    English (northeastern US)
    I think the last word is abcess. Possibly there's a comma before the word abcess -- I wouldn't think someone whose handwriting slants to the right like that would make that sort of mark to begin an A. But it could be a sort of 'mirage' created by the horizontal stroke of what I think is the A.
    The middle word does look a lot like fragmented, although I am surprised that the same person would write an f with no loop below the line in 'of' and then have such a prominent lower loop in 'fragmented.' Maybe he (presumably) wrote 'of' so many times that he didn't think of it as an o and an f.
     

    kentix

    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    That looks plausible.

    And I get the impression the middle word might end in ...otic. That might be a c looped back to cross the t.
     

    Roxxxannne

    Senior Member
    English (northeastern US)
    The problem is that the writer doesn't have enough room to write clearly what needs to be entered in the secondary line. Look how he spread out cirrhosis and then how cramped the second line is. I like the idea of the final letter of the middle word being a c, but I don't see this person as bearing down hard enough on the pen to make that entire loop back to the -t- so dark.
    Do you have the deceased's name? are there any e's or r's or t's in it? Presumably the writer would write the deceased person's name more slowly than the word liver, and that might give you some clues to letter formation.
    I do think the first word in the second line is hep., an abbreviation for the Latin word for liver, but not necessarily hepatitis (although that makes sense). What adjectives were applied to hepatitis in the 1920's, including Latin ones?
    Do you have any other death certificates that were filled out by this person? They could give you some clues -- it's really unfortunate that you have only five or six words to work with. Good luck!
     

    kentix

    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    Jana said earlier the rest of the form was filled out by someone else - I'm guessing a clerk or secretary. Then the doctor probably came along and scribbled the technical part.
     

    Roxxxannne

    Senior Member
    English (northeastern US)
    Jana said earlier the rest of the form was filled out by someone else - I'm guessing a clerk or secretary. Then the doctor probably came along and scribbled the technical part.
    Oh, I didn't catch that -- annoying!
     

    Andygc

    Senior Member
    British English
    Some small objections.

    "Sub" ends in "b", which does not have a descender.
    It would be odd for any doctor to abbreviate "diaphragmatic" to "phragmatic".
    He wouldn't need to abbreviate anything anyway because "subphrenic abscess", the usual name, would fit the space easily.

    I agree that "abscess" is likely as the final word, but I cannot make sense of the rest of it.
     

    Roxxxannne

    Senior Member
    English (northeastern US)
    I think a doctor in 1928 might have used subdiaphragmatic rather than subphrenic. There's an article in the Journal of the American Medical Association from 1923 called "Subdiaphragmatic Abcess."
    But I am suspicious of how much the -h- in cirrhosis looks like the first letter of the first word in the second line. I'd like to see some other death certificates filled out by the same doctor to see what his final b's and initial p's typically look like.
     
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