Dental Care

Important People in Anesthesia History

Horace Wells (1815 – 1848)

The findings of Davy were mostly neglected until the dentist Horace Wells took up its cause. The Connecticut dentist began to play around with nitrous Oxide, and use this as an anesthetic for dental procedures. It could have caused an obstacle to his cause when he tried to conduct to demonstrate the anesthetic. His dental patient was not completely anesthetized, and began crying out in pain. However, Wells also employed the procedure to take one of his teeth removed, and claimed that he felt no discomfort.

Crawford Long (1815 – 1878)

The first usage of diethyl ether to treat anesthesia is believed to be the work of American medical doctor Crawford Long. Long was who was an American pharmacist and doctor utilized ether for first time on the 30th of March 1842 to take out an untreated tumor from the neck.

Perhaps the most fascinating part of his story is the method by which Long discovered the pain-reducing properties of the ether. It was at one of the well-known “ether frenzy,” where people would breathe in gasses like sulphuric ether to experience the euphoric sensation that it produced. Long observed a person take an extremely serious fall, yet did not suffer any adverse effects from the fall. This resulted in Long to conduct further studies on the ether’s apparent ability to reduce pain.

William Thomas Green Morton (1819 – 1868)

While other doctors have utilized ether for anesthesia prior to Morton however, it was he who first demonstrated publicly the use of ether inhalation as an anesthetic for surgery in 1846. Because the other doctors, like Crawford Long, did not make the ether usage in public, Morton was initially given credit for being the first doctor to make use of the ether anesthetic.

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