Civil War Hospital Ship

The U.S.S. Red Rover, a captured Confederate vessel, was refitted as a hospital ship.

Evolution of Civil War Nursing

The evolution of the nursing profession in America was accelerated by the Civil War.

The Practice of Surgery

Amputations were the most common surgery performed during the Civil War.

Army Medical Museum and Library

Surgeon-General William Hammond established The Army Medical Museum in 1862. It was the first federal medical research facility.

Civil War Amputation Kit

Many Civil War surgical instruments had handles of bone, wood or ivory. They were never sterilized.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Venereal Disease

Venereal diseases were common among mid-nineteenth century troops. It has been known for hundreds of years that syphilis and gonorrhea were transmitted by sexual contact, although the term “gonorrhea” was applied to all forms of urethral discharge during the Civil War.
As the devastating complications frequently don’t appear for many years, it’s impossible to estimate the number of post-war deaths from these diseases. 102,893 soldiers were diagnosed with gonorrhea during the war and 79,589 with syphilis, but very few wartime deaths were listed as a direct result of these diseases.
The military created some successful public health programs in its effort to rid camp areas of diseased prostitutes. The women were rounded up, inspected, treated and released when their symptoms receded.


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