Ether Anesthesia & Disinfection Was Introduced Into Surgery
Ether Anesthesia and Disinfection are the Gemini constellations that opened a new era of Surgery: anesthesia gives doctors the space and time to perform their surgery skills, and disinfection gives patients hope and protection for survival.
Before the advent of ether anesthesia, most surgeons only deal with trauma and minor operations. The requirements for surgeons to operate are stable, accurate, ruthless, and fast. In 1846, when the Massachusetts General Hospital (Massachusett General Hospital, referred to as MGH) publicly demonstrated the ether anesthesia operation to the world for the first time, it took only 10 minutes for doctors to remove a patient's neck hemangioma. The death of surgical patients is mostly due to preoperative treatment and intraoperative pain-because of the pain, many patients would rather die than have surgery. After the invention of ether anesthesia, doctors not only got enough time, but also dared to perform larger and more complicated operations including laparotomy, thoracotomy, and craniotomy.
However, while ether anesthesia has been promoted, the postoperative mortality rate has increased significantly compared to before. James Simpson (1811-1870), a famous obstetrician in England and the inventor of chloroform anesthesia, once described: "Compared with the British soldiers on the battlefield of Waterloo, the patients lying on the operating table of our hospital face a greater chance of death. Big!" This is due to infection after surgery!
In 1867, the British physician Joseph Lister (1827-1912), the pioneer in antiseptic medicine and preventive medicine published an article in The Lancet, proposing the technology and theory of surgical disinfection. Most countries in the world quickly accepted this theory and method, which greatly reduced the mortality rate of patients after surgery and saved countless lives. Although his method based on the use of preservatives is no longer used, his principle-that bacteria must never enter the surgical wound-is still the basis of surgery to this day. Joseph Lister's contributions paved the way to safer medical procedures.