[Julie M. Fenster] epub Ether Day The Strange Tale of America's Greatest Medical Discovery and the Haunted Men Who Made It Read online

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Though ether may not spring to mind in a search for the greatest medical discovery the description of su. This review originally appeared on my blog at wwwgimmethatbookcomThanks to the author for gifting me this book for reviewETHER DAY is meticulously researched the characters are brought to life via the detailed descriptions of their lives and mental statesTo think that people were operated on with no care for their pain yet Laughing Gas ether was used by non medical people for fun and escape is mind boggling No one made the connection between the two until William Morton Horace Wells and Charles Jackson discovered the other uses of this gasThe fact that these three men s lives overlapped was both good and bad the discovery of ether as an anesthetic made both patient s and surgeon s lives better but there was a lot of vitriol and ego involved as well Each stood to make his fortune via ether yet their lives were not always brightened by their actionsFenster has clearly done her research there is both an index and endnotes showing the comprehensive reading she did to recreate this story She also includes a bibliography for further reading The 1800 s come to life under her expert prose and background detail I especially enjoyed the explanation of how the gas was delivered and how the machines were tinkered with to provide a accurate mixing of gas and air The fact that these men experimented on themselves shows both folly and determination in Chapter 14 Chlory there is a section about scientists sniffing different concoctions of gases to figure out the best combinationEvery Thursday evening they would gather at the Simpson home sitting around the dining table to inhale candidate chemicals I selected for experiment and have inhaled several chemical liuids of a fragrant and agreeable odor Simpson wrote in a medical journal during the course of his research such as the chlorine of hydrocarbon acetone nitrate of oxide of ethyle benzin the vapour of chloroform etc One old friend a professor named Miller made a habit of dropping by at breakfast time every Friday so he said to see if anyone was dead The lengths these men went to in the name of science is unheard of today As the book jacket notes Ether Day is a little known anniversary yet without the actions of these men there would have been greater suffering in this world They were not heros either just men trying to make money or a name for themselves who fell into a bizarre chain of events that would send them all down a crazy rabbit hole and eventually break themAuthor Julie Fenster has brought the memory of these men out of the past and placed it firmly into our awareness with ETHER DAY I commend her for choosing her subject wisely and keeping this discovery relevant in a new way

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Ether Day The Strange Tale of America's Greatest Medical Discovery and the Haunted Men Who Made It

Rgery before ether at the beginning of this book will make a strong case for it This fascinating account. This book by American Heritage magazine columnist and New York Times contributor Julie M Fenster is a remarkable account of the history of modern anesthesia a word assigned to the procedure by no less than the estimable Daniel Webster and the lives of the men who worked to gain its acceptance in the medical world Fenster has a wonderful dry wit which comes in handy when describing the antics of William Morton the mountebank and physician manue who aimed to make his fortune selling an orange scented version of common sulphuric ether named in what seems to be the first trademark of a medical good Letheon and who left a record of swindles and business fraud ranging from New Hampshire to New Orleans before demonstrating to the physicians of Massachusetts General Hospital the usefulness of ether in surgery largely removing its greatest terror unrelieved pain While effusive in her praise of the procedure of anesthesia itself Fenster gives us wonderful warts and all portraits of the major personalities who jockeyed for the title of inventor of anesthesia which included William Morton and at least two respected New England physician scholars The venues for this struggle included the United States House of Representatives where certain Representatives fought to get their state s favorite son recognition and money for the distinction of giving anesthesia to the world This is a wonderful history of anesthesia as we have come to know it in that early stage where it dramatically improved the lot of surgical patients with chemicals which before then were scientific curiosities used mainly for the entertainment of the middle class as then legal recreational drugs

characters Ether Day The Strange Tale of America's Greatest Medical Discovery and the Haunted Men Who Made It

Tells of the three men responsible for bringing ether to the world and details their bitter falling out. I first heard about this book on NPR in 2001 The story was fascinating a conman dentist made one of the most revolutionary discoveries in modern medical science and no one has heard of him Plus there s this endless feud between the various men who claim the discovery and its effects on the establishment in both science and class and the monetization of medicine The sell was great I remembered the author s name for weeks before I bought the book where once purchased it sat on a shelf for years It moved with me from Texas to South Dakota to London I ve meant to read this book for 15 years Though it was very interesting and it had me laughing well snorting out loud it wasn t a breezy readI m not sure if it was the writing style or the references but something just didn t click


10 thoughts on “Ether Day The Strange Tale of America's Greatest Medical Discovery and the Haunted Men Who Made It

  1. says:

    Ether Day tells the stranger than fiction story of the men who were involved the invention of ether The subject matter is fascinating it's wild to think about life before anesthetics and how much medical practice truly chang

  2. says:

    This review originally appeared on my blog at wwwgimmethatbookcomThanks to the author for gifting me this book for reviewETHER DAY is meticulously researched; the characters are brought to life via the detailed descriptions

  3. says:

    Really interesting was psyched that on page 5 they introduce William Morton as one of the men responsible for f

  4. says:

    Interesting historical perspective on the discovery of anesthesia especially considering all of the other famous people involved including Ralph Waldo Emerson and Samuel Morse

  5. says:

    This showed up in a monthly library magazine and caught my eye Had to be ordered through inter library loan and came from Western Pennsylvania A slow sometimes monotonous read I found the medical history a bit tedious at times but inf

  6. says:

    This book by American Heritage magazine columnist and New York Times contributor Julie M Fenster is a remarkable account of the history of modern anesthesia a word assigned to the procedure by no less than the estimable Daniel Webster and the lives of the men who worked to gain its acceptance in the medical world Fenster has a wonderful dry wit which comes in handy when describing the antics of William Morton t

  7. says:

    I uite liked this book unexpectedly lent to me Having read a fair amount of non fiction history I thought the author did a pretty good job at bringing the main characters to life Ether Day was almost a minor role in what played out for many years between the men who wanted to be acknowledged as the person who int

  8. says:

    I first heard about this book on NPR in 2001 The story was fascinating a conman dentist made one of the most revolutionary discoveries in modern medical science and no one has heard of him Plus there's this endless feud between the various men who claim the discovery and its effects on the establishment in both science and class an

  9. says:

    Ether Day is a fascinating look at the history of anesthesia even if you’re not an anesthesiologist Think about it the first clinical use of general anesthesia in the surgical arena was just over 150 years ago This is an amusing and educational look at the history of what is arguably the most important medical advancement in the history of mankind This book will interest anyone who has ever had surgery plans to have surgery has an inte

  10. says:

    Fairly interesting a tangled tale about three men all of whom claimed the invention of ether The book interweaves the tale of the thre

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