Title: Spotts, Israel

Source text: Surgeon General Joseph K. Barnes, United States Army, The Medical and Surgical History of the War of the Rebellion. (1861–65.), Part 1, Volume 2 (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1870), 579.

Keywords:wounds and injuries of the chestoperations on the chestexcisionsthoracentesisthoracentesis for effusion following perforation of chest by small projectileparacentesis thoracishydrothorax or empyema followed lodgement of missile in chesttraumatic pleurisy with effusion following gunshot woundempyemaball in trapezius muscle, whence extractedbullet still in lung

Civil War Washington ID: med.d1e20228

TEI/XML: med.d1e20228.xml

CASE 24.—Corporal Israel Spotts, Co. G, 200th Pennsylvania Volunteers, aged 24 years, received a gunshot non-penetrating wound of the chest at Petersburg, Virginia, March 25th, 1865. He was conveyed to the hospital of the Ninth Corps, where hæmoptysis and dyspnœa supervened. On April 5th, he was transferred to Harewood Hospital, Washington. Surgeon R. B. Bontecou, U. S. V., reports that the ball entered the back in the dorsal region, about two inches below the spine of the scapula, and buried itself in the trapezius muscle, whence it was extracted. On admission, the condition of the injured parts and constitutional state of the patient were good. He did very well for a while, the wound healing kindly; but toward the early part of the month of May, the chest became enormously distended with effusion. There was a harassing cough, anxiety of countenance, oppressed breathing, and symptoms of empyema. An operation being necessary to relieve the patient, paracentesis thoracis was performed by Surgeon Bontecou, on May 9th, by freely opening the chest at the right posterior and lateral aspect, between the eighth and ninth ribs. About six pints of sanious pus were removed; no anæsthetic was used. The patient felt at once relieved and did remarkably well after the operation. The treatment consisted of simple dressings, anodynes, and supporting throughout. He was furloughed and sent to his home at Hammondstown, Pennsylvania. Dr. Stichley, attending physician, states: "Saw soldier after he reached home; found him suffering from empyema. After he was home a few days an operation was performed on him, removing two or three quarts of pus from his chest. Operation had to be performed every two or three weeks. The bullet was still in the lung. He lived in this condition for about two months. Death resulted September 20th, 1865, from exhaustion produced by suppuration."