The Age of Science
Anton Mesmer (1734-1815)
In 1766 Austrian physician Antonio Mesmer evolved the technique of “Mesmerism,” he created a sensation in Paris in 1778, but was denounced as a charlatan in 1785. This was the first description of hypnotism as a form of anaesthesia. He claimed that he and others possessed "magnetism animal”
This is usually translated as animal magnetism, although animal is related to the Latin animus, meaning breath or life force. (Today, the term "animal magnetism" means sex appeal.) Mesmer claimed, Mesmerism could affect the flow of the universal fluid pervading all things and this, in turn, could heal the sick and cure the blind. 134
Mesmer's theory was discredited, but his practices lived on.
James Braid, another British physician, speculated that somnambulism was caused by the paralysis of nerve centres induced by fixation of the eyes on an object.In order to eliminate the taint of mesmerism, Braid renamed the state "neuro-hypnotism" (nervous sleep); a term later shortened to hypnosis.
Later, he concluded that hypnosis was due to the subject's concentration on a single thought (monoideism) rather than physiological fatigue.
Jean Andre Venal (1740-1791)
Jean-Andre Venal was better known as the father of orthopaedics’, although many strongly disagree; believing that his work was un-scientific and that his only contribution was the use of the word Orthopaedics. 135
James Moore was a London surgeon who came from a distinguished family with most of his brothers serving in the armed forces and one who became an Admiral and the other who served in the Army reaching the rank of Lt General was killed during the Napoleonic wars. 136
He was concerned at an early stage in his career for the widespread suffering that he saw as a result of surgery.Moore described the technique of compression to control pain during amputation. A tourniquet was applied for 30 minutes prior to amputation, the nerves were numbed by the compression. He wrote a book which was called "A Method of Preventing and Diminishing Pain During Surgery" which was in fact the first book written on regional anaesthesia or in that matter anaesthesia in general.
"A smart mother makes often a better diagnosis than a poor doctor"137