THE CONDITION of the surgical patient postoperatively depends on several factors, among which are surgical trauma, length of operation, type of anesthesia and loss of blood. The more closely each of these factors can be maintained to normal, the more rapid will be the patient's recovery. With improved methods of surgery and anesthesia, the causes producing shock have been reduced to a minimum, with hemorrhage or blood loss as the chief remaining cause.
Work was done to show that hemorrhage, too, could be controlled and measured and the lost blood replaced by adequate amounts to compensate for the original loss. This permits patients to be returned to the ward postoperatively in much better condition than those in whom no accurate replacement of blood has been made.
Gatch and Little1 in 1924 observed that blood losses up to 700 cc. did not appreciably disturb the patient's postoperative course. Robust and