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While I fully appreciate the need for caution and care in all departments of medicine, I have of late years come to believe that patients are often subjected to restrictions which add to their discomfort, without bringing any commensurate advantage in shortening the time of recovery or guaranteeing the permanency of cure.
The inaccuracy of our former knowledge of the causes of surgical complications and a college teaching, which gives little opportunity for the exercise of individual judgment, have tended to make the timid or inexperienced practitioner follow with blind zeal the dogmatic assertions of writers and teachers of recognized authority.
It is true that it is better to err on the side of caution than to expose a patient to unwarranted risk in a desire to give him greater liberty. On the other hand, the establishment of a nervous dread in the mind of an invalid is one of
JOHN B. ROBERTS. UNNECESSARY RESTRICTIONS IN SURGERY.Read in the Section of Surgery and Anatomy at the Forty-fourth Annual Meeting of the American Medical Association.. JAMA. 1893;XXI(8):274–276. doi:10.1001/jama.1893.02420600024001f