Reconstructing Disabled Soldiers

in War's Waste

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print June 2011 | ISBN: 9780226482538
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226482552 | DOI:
Reconstructing Disabled Soldiers

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This chapter reviews the medical rehabilitation of disabled American soldiers. Rehabilitation promised to conserve labor power and improve national efficiency in times of war and peace. The orthopedic treatment of children increased when subcutaneous tenotomies became a safe and accepted practice for treating congenital clubfoot. Successful orthopedic treatment increasingly became measured by the number of patients who entered the workforce. American orthopedists had always treated adults, even though their primary institutional affiliations were with those devoted to children. Joel Goldthwait aimed to broaden the scope of US orthopedic surgery. A crucial source of information about wartime orthopedics came from Sir Robert Jones. The formulation of orthopedic surgery by Goldthwait and Jones promised more than wartime conservation, for both men had their sights on an improved postwar society. Disabled men and disabled children both fell into the category of dependents, whether on the state or on local voluntary organizations.

Keywords: medical rehabilitation; disabled American soldiers; labor power; Joel Goldthwait; Sir Robert Jones; wartime orthopaedics; orthopedic surgery

Chapter.  10636 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: History of the Americas

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