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January 9, 1954

The Principles of Thoracic Anaesthesia Past and Present

JAMA. 1954;154(2):184. doi:10.1001/jama.1954.02940360082031

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This book makes more than one appeal to the reader. At first glance, it might be considered a historical account in the sense that the story behind modern anesthesia for thoracic surgery is told step by step, from the basic consideration of respiration itself to how one deals with the respiratory apparatus when necessary. Resuscitation is discussed at length, and the ancient devices that were useful in treating patients are described and well illustrated. Early apparatus for intubation are shown, particularly for use against diphtheric croup, and the attempts at anesthesia for operations on the thorax between 1888 and 1900 are illustrated and described. Methods of obtaining positive and negative pressures also are presented. Insufflation techniques (1907 to 1913) and automatic inflation (1909 to 1911) are adequately discussed and well illustrated.

Few, if any, of the methods used for the production of thoracic anesthesia have been overlooked. In fact, it

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