Title: Harper, William A.
Source text: The Medical and Surgical History of the War of the Rebellion. (1861-65.), Part 2, Volume 1 (Washington, DC: Government Printing Office, 1879), 156.
Civil War Washington ID: med.d1e40958
Case from the case-book and medical descriptive lists of the DOUGLAS HOSPITAL, Washington, D. C., Assistant Surgeon William Thomson, U. S. A., in charge from February, 1863, to September, 1864, and after September, 1865:
CASE 329.—Corporal William A. Harper, company K, 2d New York heavy artillery; age 31; admitted October 4, 1865. Chronic diarrhœa, from which he had been suffering two months and a half. The patient was very weak and emaciated, and suffered from almost constant nausea. He had ten or twelve liquid discharges daily. Stimulants, subcarbonate of bismuth, nitrate of silver, creasote, lime-water and milk, &c., were tried without success. The patient was unable to retain food or medicine, whether administered by the mouth or rectum. October 13th: He complained of pain in the left side of the chest, which was found to be dull on percussion; on auscultation large crepitation was heard. Carbonate of ammonia was prescribed, but was rejected. Flannel cloths saturated with turpentine and alcohol were applied to the chest, but with little effect. Died, October 21st. Autopsy fourteen hours after death: Rigor mortis well marked; body much emaciated. The brain was not examined. The left pleural sac contained about six ounces of fluid in which a few shreds of lymph floated; there were both old and new pleuritic adhesions on this side. The posterior two-thirds of the inferior lobe of the left lung was pneumonic; the superior lobe almost entirely healthy, as was the whole right lung. The liver was apparently healthy. The spleen small and hard. The kidneys were normal. The small intestine was inflamed and congested, with small patches of ulceration scattered over its mucous surface; the solitary glands seemed to be the seat of most of the ulcers; Peyer's patches were slightly engorged. The large intestine was inflamed but not ulcerated. The mucous membrane of the stomach near the pylorus was ulcerated, the ulcers resembling those of the small intestine.—Acting Assistant Surgeon George P. Hanawalt.