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Part 5

And these are the signs that the patient has been well treated and properly bandaged: if you ask him if the arm feels tight, and he says it does, but moderately so, and especially about the fracture; and this reply he should make all along, if the bandage be properly applied. And these are symptoms of the bandaging being moderately tight; if for the first day and night he fancies that the tightness does not diminish, but rather increases; and if on the next day there be a soft swelling in the hand, for this is a sign of moderate compression, but at the end of the second day the compression should feel less, and on the third day the bandaging should appear loose. And if any of[p. 176] these symptoms be wanting, you may conclude that the bandaging is slacker than it should be; or if any of these symptoms be in excess, you may infer that the compression is more than moderate; and judging from these, you will apply the next bandages either slacker or tighter. Having removed the bandages on the third day, you must make extension and adjust the fracture, and bind it up again; and if the first bandaging was moderately applied, the second bandaging should be made somewhat tighter. The heads the bandages should be placed on the fractures as in the former case; for, so doing, the humors will be driven to the extremities, whereas if you bandage any other part beforehand, the humors will he forced from it to the seat of the fracture: it is of much importance that this should be properly understood. Thus the bandaging and compression should always commence at the seat of the fracture, and everything else should be conducted on the same principle, so that the farther you proceed from the fracture, the compression should always be the less. The bandages should never be actually loose, but should be smoothly put on. At each dressing the number of bandages should be increased; and the patient, if asked, should answer, that he feels the bandages somewhat tighter than on the former occasion, especially about the fracture, and everything else in proportion; and with respect to the swelling, the pain, and recovery, everything should proceed as after the former dressing. But on the third day the outer bandaging should appear looser. Then having removed the bandages, you should bind it up again, somewhat tighter than before, and with all the bandages which will be required on the occasion, and afterwards one ought to experience the same train of symptoms as at the former periods of bandaging.

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