Monday, March 22, 2010

Accession of the day, March 22

Photograph Number 314. Indian arrow - heads removed from wounds.

The specimens numbered 5639 and 5640 of the Surgical Section were contributed to the Army Medical Museum by Assistant Surgeon B.A. Clements, U.S.A. The former is an iron arrow - head three inches in length and half an inch in its widest part. It had been imbedded one inch in the ilium.

The latter specimen was removed from the scapula of a Private of the 5th Infantry at Fort Fauntleroy, New Mexico, in 1861. The arrow entered just above the posterior fold of the axilla; the shaft separated with the slightest traction; probing to the extent of two and half inches failed to reveal the head. After waiting three months it was extracted through an exploratory T - shaped incision. The missile, two inches long and half an inch in width at the base, was greatly bent upon itself by the force of impact.

The specimen number 5641, Section I. [1] Army Medical Museum, was contributed by Assistant Surgeon A.H. Smith, U.S.A., by whom it was removed from the testis of a Mexican herder, some three months after the reception of the injury. This case is mentioned on page 156, Circular Number 3, Surgeon General's Office.

The next specimen (Number 5642) was taken from the left lung of Nat. Crabtree who was killed by Indians near Fort Cooke, Montana Territory, April 24, 1868. It was contributed by Hospital Steward C.T. Smith, U.S.A.

The remaining specimen (5654) was extracted from the brain of a Private of the 14th Infantry, who was wounded by Apache Indians near Maricopa Wells, Arizona Territory, on March 22, 1866. The patient is reported to have been nine days travelling to Maricopa Wells from the place where he was wounded. On April 19th, he was received into the hospital at Camp McDowell, Arizona, and the missile was removed next day by Assistant Surgeon Charles Smart, U.S.A. Under cautious treatment the patient improved, but May 7th, after a very imprudent meal, he was taken with violent symptoms and died on the 13th. A detailed account of this case is to be found in Circular Number 3, Surgeon General's Office, in the article on arrow - wounds.

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