April 23, 1898


Author Affiliations


JAMA. 1898;XXX(17):972-974. doi:10.1001/jama.1898.72440690032002j

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Last year I read before this society a paper on the abuse of water in surgery (American Medical Association Journal, No. 26, 1896). Some of the disadvantages of its excessive use in both septic and aseptic cases was pointed out. It was urged also, that outside of hospitals, where we have to rely on unskilled help to prepare the water, it is often used from vessels improperly cared for, and is often the source of infection. On the other hand, there is no longer a doubt that ideal asepsis may be attained by the dry method. The action of the water, though it be pure and sterile, exercises an unfavorable influence on healthy tissues, while antiseptic solutions often injure them and markedly reduce their ability to resist infection. It is practically settled, that septic wounds can not be rendered aseptic by any washing, or the use of antiseptics, no matter

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