Site Home   Gender and Trauma       Introduction to Gender and Health   The Gender Lens Tool

American Civil War

Prior to the American Civil War, trauma care was limited to the management of minor soft tissue injuries and the most extensive procedure being performed was amputation[1].  During the Civil War (1861-65) studies began to demonstrate the effectiveness of antiseptics in reducing wound sepsis mortality, although use of antiseptics had not yet gained widespread usage.

Wound care advanced in the treatment of open wounds, with these wounds being left to heal by "granulation" [1] What is granulation?

At the same time, important steps were taken in organizing field hospitals for treating wounded patients. Hospitals were organized into levels ranging from regimental hospitals located at battle sites to centralized general hospitals treating thousands of patients [1]


1. Trunkey, D.D. (2000). "History and Development of Trauma Care in the United States." Clin Orthop 1 (374): 36-46.

All references for this section