Title: Pitsley, Henry

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), 106.

Keywords:diarrhœa and dysenteryfatal cases of diarrhœa and dysentery, with accounts of the morbid appearances observedfrom DeCamp Hospital, David's Island, New York harbordiarrhœa and pain in side for five monthsemaciated and weakcough for four monthslungs tuberculous, riddled with cavitiesmesenteric glands tubercularautopsy performed

Civil War Washington ID: med.d1e40715

TEI/XML: med.d1e40715.xml

The following case forwarded on medical descriptive lists from the DECAMP HOSPITAL, David's Island, New York harbor. Assistant Surgeon J. Sim Smith in charge at the date of the case.

CASE 105.—Private Henry Pitsley, company C, 147th New York volunteers; age 21; admitted October 29, 1863. Chronic diarrhœa. [This man was admitted to the field hospital of his regiment in the latter part of March, 1863, and returned to duty some time after; the date is not recorded. He was re-admitted with dysentery May 15th, and is reported returned to duty May 18th. He was again admitted with diarrhœa October 1st, and transferred to the field hospital of the 1st Division, 1st Corps, October 5th. October 11th he was sent to Washington, D. C., and was admitted on the same day to Carver hospital. The diagnosis recorded is chronic diarrhœa. October 28th he was sent to New York, and admitted to this hospital next day, as stated above.] He stated that he was attacked about five months ago with diarrhœa and pain in the side. The diarrhœa was profuse and the pain in the side severe, but he was kept with his regiment until about two weeks ago, when he was sent to Carver hospital, Washington, D. C., whence he was transferred to this place. He is now much emaciated and very weak; pulse frequent and feeble; diarrhœa profuse. He has considerable cough, which he says has troubled him for the last four months. November 3d: The patient appears to be gaining strength; the diarrhœa is somewhat improved, there being but about four passages daily; his appetite also has improved. Ordered half an ounce of whiskey every two hours, and a chalk-mixture containing paregoric and rhatany. Diet: Milk, eggs, and beef-tea. November 12th: Is about out of doors, and seems to be doing very well. Treatment continued, with the addition of half an ounce of cod-liver oil twice daily. November 25th: The patient is still doing well. He has gained some flesh, but the cough and diarrhœa continue, though they are less troublesome than at first; his appetite is good, and he sleeps pretty well at night. Treatment continued. November 30th: For the last day or so the patient has not been so well. He is beginning to lose appetite; his cough is troublesome, and the diarrhœa is again very severe; does not sleep well at night. Directed him to take ten grains of subnitrate of bismuth and one-third of a grain of powdered opium every three hours. December 3d: The diarrhœa still continues; the patient is very feeble. Ordered a pill of lead and opium every three hours; whiskey. He died December 5th. Autopsy eighteen hours after death: Rigor mortis well marked; body very poorly nourished. The left lung was tuberculous and firmly adherent to the walls of the chest; its upper lobe was nearly solidified, and riddled with cavities, one or two of which measured an inch in diameter; the lower lobe contained tubercles but no cavities; in the right lung some groups of tubercles were scattered here and there, but there were no cavities. The heart was normal. The diaphragm was firmly adherent to the whole upper surface of the liver. The liver and spleen were normal. About the ileocæcal valve there was marked congestion, and there were deposits of tubercles [?] on the surface of the intestines, but no well-marked ulceration. The mesenteric glands were tubercular; some of them were as large as an inch and a half in diameter. The kidneys were normal.—Acting Assistant Surgeon A. Norton Brockway.