ANESTHESIA HAS ALWAYS held a peculiar interest for the obstetrician. The very word anesthesia was first suggested by Oliver Wendell Holmes, whose most noteworthy medical work was in the field of obstetrics. Another great obstetrician's name is by common consent associated with the beginnings of modern anesthesia: Sir James Simpson was not only one of the first Europeans to recognize the value of ether, but he was the discoverer of the anesthetic properties of chloroform (1847), and bore the brunt of the abuse for introducing anesthesia into the practice of obstetrics.
*Courtesy of the Irish Journal of Medical Science.
© 1931 International Anesthesia Research Society