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Dyess, Arkansas Historical events

1939, May 10


John H. Wilson, M. D.

Dyess, Ark.

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It is not the purpose of this paper to give a perfectly illuminated idea of physiologic reproduction of the human species assisted by an expert obstetrician, but rather to reproduce to you a few humble ideas of work, technique and results of one hundred sixty rural obstetrical cases in the twenty-five bed and four bassinet Dyess Colony Hospital.

I realize that the majority of you doctors have delivered more babies

under all types of adversities and complications than I have attended, or probably ever will deliver, but the practice of obstetrics at Dyess Colony is rather unique, due to the fact that we are dealing with a previously depleted class of women who are becoming educated to the benefits of prenatal care, and having their babies in a completely equipped small hospital, under aseptic methods, ready at all times to meet any emergency or unforeseen complication of labor.

Said colony is composed of approximately four hundred fifty (450)

families, or twenty-five hundred population, and roughly speaking, one fourth of the women are pregnant all the time. Since this is a controlled practice, we do all the medical and surgical care of these people, and obstetrics is forging ahead today in the race of medical specialization. As will be seen, this field of medicine is no place for a mid-wife or indifferent and incompetent doctor. Hence, one can well agree with Dr. Paul Titus, who says, "Scientific obstetrics is a highly specialized branch of surgery.

To cover the three trimesters of prenatal, delivery and postnatal care of pregnancy and puerperium in all their deviations and idiosyncrasies would require several volumes, therefore I will try to confine this paper to our routine obstetrical care, and treatments of complications as they occur in each trimester of pregnancy as followed in Dyess Hospital.

At this time 95% of our patients are seen in the out-clinic Department

within ten weeks after conception. Each patient is given a complete physical examination and blood Wassermann test for detection of systemic or local diseases, which are eradicated if possible. A prenatal chart is made of this patient, and pelvis measurements recorded. Particular interest is given to her weight, heart and kidney function, and pelvic dimensions. A vitaminosis is always a question in this type of patient, hence she is advised as to her diet and habits from the beginning of pregnancy.

Read before the Arkansas State Medical Society, Hot Springs,

Arkansas, May 10, 1939

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