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This historic book may have numerous typos and missing text. Purchasers can usually download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. Not indexed. Not illustrated. 1856 edition. Excerpt: ... anaesthesia into popular use in midwifery, its adoption is still the exception rather than the rule. In England, it has never made much progress in this direction. It is neither extensively advocated by the accoucheurs, nor demanded by the ladies. It has not yet come to be considered a relic of barbarism for ladies to endure the appointed pains of a physiological process. Most persons still look upon the production of anaesthesia in midwifery as a contravention of a religious ordinance. Whether the objections thus raised against anaesthesia for this purpose are grounded in reason or not, the fact remains unaltered, that among the general population insensibility in midwifery is rarely sought for, and rarely induced. And, in so far, the objection to the incompetency of cold as an anaesthetic loses much of its weight. Dr. Merriman, for example, thus writes in the 'Medical Times and Gazette' for April 22d, 1854: "Chloroform may produce alarming results in midwifery practice, and, if given at all, should be in small quantities only." And he adds--" The more I hear and see of the use of chloroform in midwifery, the more I am convinced that, though it may occasionally be useful, and even desirable, in the small quantities now administered in London, its administration is not desirable in ordinary cases." Dr. Merriman, in the same communication, relates the painful history of a patient whom the administration of chloroform, in her last labour, has driven within the walls of a lunatic asylum. The question of the anaesthetic application of cold in preference to chloroform, &c, becomes to our mind one of professional morality. It is no longer a doubtful point, whether cold is capable of effecting sufficient insensibility...
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