Title: Belt, Thomas B.

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), 584.

Keywords:wounds and injuries of the chestoperations on the chestexcisionsballs and foreign bodies lodgedbullet entered at cartilaginous portion of seventh rib, passed into transverse colontraumatic feverball passed while defecating

Civil War Washington ID: med.d1e20269

TEI/XML: med.d1e20269.xml

CASE 8.—Private Thomas B. Belt, Co. C, 155th Pennsylvania Volunteers, having been wounded at Petersburg on March 25th, was admitted to Armory Square Hospital, Washington, on April 24th, 1865. A bullet had entered through the cartilaginous portion of the seventh rib, passed into the region of the transverse colon, and lodged. On admission, the patient suffered from traumatic fever, severe pain in the region of the wound, extending over the abdomen, hiccough and vomiting—the vomited matter consisting of small particles of greenish matter. There was difficult respiration and anorexia; the surface was covered with a cold, clammy perspiration, and there was great difficulty in making water. The treatment in this case consisted of a demulcent and anodyne decoction, of which a wine-glassful was taken four or five times daily; the free use of cracked ice, and a very limited diet of beef-tea, not exceeding six ounces daily. On April 29th, the patient being seized with severe pain in the bowels, passed the ball while defecating. Immediate relief followed, and on May 1st, 1865, the patient was doing well. He was discharged the service on September 22d, 1865. The missile was contributed to the Army Medical Museum, with the foregoing account, by Acting Assistant Surgeon C. H. Bowen. It is shown in the adjoining wood-cut (FIG. 280). Belt is not a pensioner.

FIG. 280.—Conoidal ball, much disfigured, and containing several bony spicula​ imbedded. Spec. 1569, Sect. I, A. M. M.