Revolutionary Treatment in the 18th Century

When one thinks of Revolutionary War combat injuries, one tends to think of physical trauma or even death.  Head injury is generally not considered, even though when one thinks of war injuries, head injuries are known to occur all too often.  Because of this reality, during the War of Independence, American doctors began to study neurosurgery and treat soldiers accordingly.  A manual, entitled Plain Concise Practical Remarks on the Treatment of Wounds and Fractures and authored by Dr. John Jones, was published in 1775, “to give the young unexperienced Surgeon, fome general and clear ideas of the nature and treatment of this difficult and dangerous brain of chirurgical difeafes” sic.  Dr. Jones’ experience included founding King’s College Medical School, now known as Columbia College of Physicians and Surgeons.  (Manual chapters include: Of Blows on the Head, Of Injuries Arifing from Concussion or Commotion, Of Injuries Arifing from Fracture of the Skull.)

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