We publish below a communication from Messrs. Purcell
& Co., with reference to a disinfectant, which, from its cheapness, simplicity of manufacture, and efficiency, is at the present time invaluable to the South
We invite attention to the subject.
We learn that the powder, prepared according to the prescription, has been tested in several hospitals in this city, and found entirely successful.
Surgeons express their great surprise at Rs prompt efficacy in wounds that were in a very bad condition:
--Gentlemen in the absence of the usual disinfectants, we beg leave to call the attention of surgeons and others to the accompanying extract from a report on a new top-level application for dressing wounds, &c., which was kindly furnished us by Col. Wm. Gilham
, V. M. I. Colonel
G. also gave us a few pounds of the powder, prepared by himself, which we had tried in hospitals, the surgeons reporting that it fully answered every expectation.
The mode of preparation is simple and the material cheap...five parts of coal tar mined thoroughly with one hundred parts, both by weight, of finely powdered sulphate of lime or ‘"Plaster of Paris
We have prepared a supply, and will cheerfully furnish, without charge, to any surgeon, a sufficiency to make an experiment of its efficacy.
--Coal for and plaster of Paris
have been used here unsuccessfully, because used in improper proportions.
"For several weeks the scientific and medical world has been greatly interested by the introduction of a new and remarkable topical application for dressing wounds.
Official experiments on this dressing have been made at 'Le Gharite,'
where cancers and other affections of this kind receive special attention.
The distinguished surgeon, Velponu, after experiment with this disinfectant on suppurating wounds in a putrid state, has reported favorably to the Academy of Sciences.
We extract some passages from this report:
"'A large mammillary ulcer, with mortification of the skin, was treated with the topic bath in powder and in pomade.
The suppuration diminished and the odor disappeared, at the same time the affected surface became cleansed and the mamma without pain.
"'In the case of a woman with a vast concerns ulcer eating away all the left side of the chest, the odor of the feculent pus after two daily applications disappeared.
"'A young man was treated whose hand was scalded by a steam boiler and mortification had supervened, involving nearly the whole of one finger.
On Saturday this finger was in a complete state of mortification and gave out a disgusting odor.
It was dressed on the morning and evening of that day with the powder in question.
The bad finger was dried up immediately, the odor disappeared, and the mortification ceased.
He adds that this mode of disinfection occasions neither pain, irritation, swelling, or inflammation; it also appears rather to favor than otherwise the progress of granulation and There is, therefore, no inconvenience in applying it to various fleers, sores, and wounds requiring to be disinfected.
"The Major General
of the French
army in Italy
, anticipating these reported results, gave orders for the use of this topic immediately for the relief of the wounded.
The success of this treatment has been communicated by Marshall Valliant
to the Academy.
The report details the successful treatment by this means of gangrened sores
upon twenty wounded Austrians, in the hospital at Milan
These cases, the physicians assert, were of the worst possible character, and the success immediate and complete.
"'The application either of the powder or of the pomade, (made by mixing the powder with olive oil
,) occasions no distress even if placed in direct contact with the surface.
The treatment has the double advantage of disinfecting
and also abeerbing the pus,
with the employment of lint,
as the late experience in Italy
has abundantly proved."'