Excerpt from The Clinical Journal, Vol. 25 of 2: Clinical Record, Clinical News, Clinical Gazzete, Clinical Reporter, Clinical Chronicle and Clinical Review; A Weekly Record of Clinical Medicine and Surgery, With Their Special Branches; October 19, 1904 April 12, 1905; Thirteenth Year
In cases of general septic infection, streptococci may be found in the blood and tissues generally, and the mere presence of a local abscess contain ing septic organisms is an undoubted proof that our tissues are invaded from time to time. But notwithstanding these undoubted exceptions, the general rule still holds good that septic organisms do not exist in the tissues of healthy individuals, and thus it is that when a wound heals without any septic organism entering to mar. Its progress we say that it has run an aseptic course. In this case the term aseptic is applied to the result, and not necessarily to the means by which it is produced. I will not waste your time by a dissertation on aseptic versus antiseptic methods. Each has its proper sphere and place, and so far as our present knowledge goes, it seems to me useless to pursue this side of our subject further at this present moment. I may fairly assume that every surgeon worthy of the name is desirous of obtaining an aseptic result when he performs an operation, and for my own part I care not whether that end is achieved by heat sterilisation or by the agency of chemicals. All I desire is that my patient shall get well with the least possible risk and the greatest possible speed, and the object of these remarks is to give you my experience of how to achieve that end with the greatest possible certainty.
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