The progress made in the science of medicine and surgery since the commencement of the present century has been wonderful indeed. The spirit of positivism and experimentation which characterizes our epoch, the generalization of clinical and practical studies, the great modern wars which have afforded such vast fields of observation, the most thorough knowledge of anatomy and physiology, and the immense improvement made in the physical and chemical sciences, satisfactorily explain the true and permanent advancement of medicine and surgery. Every day chemistry furnishes us with precise methods and new discoveries. The most wonderful and valuable of all has certainly been the discovery and generalization of anæsthesia, general and local, and particularly ether and chloroform, and the newly-discovered cocaine. These extraordinary agents, which have abolished pain, have permitted operations, such as ovariotomy, gastrotomy, the removal of internal tumors, and extensive autoplastic operations for restoration or creation of organs, which, without
FORMENTO F. AUTOPLASTY; THE CONSERVATIVE SPIRIT OF MODERN SURGERY. JAMA. 1885;V(8):198–202. doi:10.1001/jama.1885.02391070001001a
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