1860–1910: The Specialty of Anesthesia Develops Slowly

  • Edmond I Eger II
  • Lawrence J. Saidman
  • Rod N. Westhorpe


The discovery of anesthesia ultimately enabled remarkable advances in surgical care, but did not immediately change operations. At first, surgeons still pulled teeth, managed injuries, amputated limbs, and performed brief operations requiring momentary but deep levels of anesthesia. So the anesthetist drove the level of anesthesia down and then allowed it to “bounce” up, the surgeon operating at deeper levels of anesthesia. Further advances required improvements.


History of anesthesia Anesthesia history Anesthesia in the American civil war Civil war anesthesia Local anesthetics History 


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Copyright information

© Edmond I Eger, MD 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Edmond I Eger II
    • 1
  • Lawrence J. Saidman
    • 2
  • Rod N. Westhorpe
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Anesthesia and Perioperative CareUniversity of CaliforniaSan FranciscoUSA
  2. 2.Departments of AnesthesiaStanford UniversityStanfordUSA
  3. 3.MelbourneAustralia

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