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The Michael E. DeBakey Papers

Letter from Alton Ochsner to Michael E. DeBakey pdf (1,898,262 Bytes) transcript of pdf
Letter from Alton Ochsner to Michael E. DeBakey
Number of Image Pages:
2 (1,898,262 Bytes)
1936-03-03 (March 3, 1936)
Ochsner, Alton
[DeBakey, Michael E.]
Reproduced with permission of John Ochsner.
Exhibit Category:
From Tulane School of Medicine to the U.S. Army, 1928-1946
Box Number:
Unique Identifier:
Document Type:
Letters (correspondence)
Physical Condition:
Series: Correspondence, 1921-2007
Folder: Ochsner, Alton, 1935-1942, 1978-1981, 2003
March 3, 1936
Dear Mike,
I want to report upon Ernest's subsequent course, because I know you are very much interested in it., and I am happy to report that he is getting along very well.
We had considerable difficulty in getting his infection cleared up as he had one of the worst infected wounds I have ever seen. We kept him in continuous baths during the day for two weeks and then applied hot compresses of saline at night. He got more comfort out of the bath, however, and preferred to stay in there from early morning until late at night. Last Monday morning, thirteen days after his arrival at Touro, we felt that his wounds were clean enough so that we could graft them. Therefore, Neal and I grafted the entire surface with the split graft of Blair. We did not dress the wound until four days later, on Friday, at which time there was some evidence of pyocyaneus infection. We immediately started boric acid dressings and the wounds the last days have looked very much better, and I am sure that we are going to save most of the grafts, although it did look rather gloomy at the time of the first dressing, because of the pyocyaneus infection. It probably would have been better had we waited a few more days before grafting him, but we were anxious to save him as much time as possible, and I am sure we are going to get by with this.
His spirits are entirely different, and I am sure he will be out of the hospital within the next two weeks and will probably be able to get back to school for the last trimester. It has just been a darned shame that he has been laid up. I only regretted that we didn't know earlier that he wasn't getting along as well as he should, because I think we might have been able to shorten his convalescence.
I have just received your article on Professor Leriche and his Clinic and am very much impressed with it. It is beautifully written, and I am sending it in to S. G. and O. for their consideration for possible publication. I don't know just what their reaction will be, but will let you know just as soon as I hear. As you requested, I am putting the name of Dr. Albert Saldiarraga, of Colombia, as co-author.
I am very much thrilled about the article which you have written for the otolaryngological book on transfusion. I learned about this first from a letter which you had written home and which I read when Mims and I went out to Lake Charles to see Ernest. I think this is a very nice tribute to the work which you have done, but nothing more than you deserve.
You will probably be interested in knowing that our article on pulmonary complications of amebiasis appeared in the place of honor in the recent issue of the Journal of Thoracic Surgery, being the first in the book. It certainly looks fine and is worth the amount of work which we put on it.
As yet I have not heard from Professor Kirschner, but am in hopes that I will very soon. As soon as I do, I shall communicate with you.
I am certainly glad that the Mardi Gras season is over, because it is pretty hard to try to get anything done during that time as you probably know. Isabel's sister-in-law was here, and Terry came over for the week preceding Mardi Gras day. In addition to that, Isabel's mother and father were here so that we had quite a house full. Both of the girls have left, but Isabel's mother and father are still here, and we are enjoying their visit very much.
Please keep me posted concerning your work.
With kindest regards from all of us, I am
Sincerely yours,
Alton Ochsner, M.D.
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