Oliver Wendell Holmes And Puerperal Fever
On this date in 1843, Oliver Wendell Holmes delivered his paper, On the Contagiousness of Puerperal Fever, to the Boston Society for Medical Improvement. More commonly known as postpartum infection, puerperal fever is a birth canal infection that sometimes occurs once a mother delivers her baby. Caused by bacteria, postpartum infection can invade the uterus, vagina, kidneys and other nearby tissues. Holmes earned his medical degree from Harvard University in 1836. After practicing medicine for 10 years and teaching anatomy at Dartmouth College for two, Holmes returned to Harvard, where he became professor of anatomy and physiology in 1847. Later, he was appointed dean of the Harvard Medical School, a post he held until 1882.
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