The Wounds of the President
The medical profession
of the entire country rejoice and congratulate themselves that President
McKinley was surrounded by such eminent surgical care and skill.
From all accounts he was speedily removed from the scene of his
misfortune, and promptly placed in a new and modern emergency hospital,
where competent men were in attendance.
Within an hour three or four of the
best men in Buffalo were in consultation, and their wisdom prompted
them to make an exploration, and repair the wounds in the walls
of the stomach. No one will for a moment question the line of surgical
Surgery of the stomach has made wonderful
progress of late, sections being removed, ulcers excised, growths
destroyed, or the entire organ eviscerated. Had the surgeons adopted
a waiting line of treatment they would have been roundly condemned
for not attempting the repair of two small wounds. Fortunately,
perhaps, the accident happened at an opportune time, when the stomach
was practically empty, and dangers from excursion of its contents
were remote. The elevation of pulse and temperature indicated a
rather profound state of shock, yet no more than might be expected
in any surgery of the stomach.
The probabilities are toward recovery,
provided there are no serious renal or cardiac complications that
would be augmented by local inflammation.
If the president recovers, as every
one devoutly hopes, surgery will be elevated to a higher plane than
it now occupies, and his recovery will demonstrate to the public
the differences in the methods of treatment at the time of Garfield’s
wound and the wounds of to-day. Perhaps, too, it will call the country’s
attention to the inexcusable omission from the Hall of Fame of the
name of every illustrious medical man and eminent surgeon.