Colorado's Healthcare Heritage

Updates to Volume One — 1874

On February 13, 1874, Joseph Lister — since 1869, professor of surgery at the University of Edinburgh — wrote to Louis Pasteur in Paris:

I do not know whether the records of British surgery ever meet your eye. If so, you will have seen, from time to time, notices of the antiseptic system of treatment, which I have been laboring for the last nine years to bring to perfection. Allow me to take this opportunity to tender you my most cordial things for having, by your brilliant researches, demonstrated to me t6he truth of the germ theory of putrefaction, and thus furnished me with the antiseptic system can be carried out.

Should you at any time visit Edinburgh, it would, I believe, give you sincere gratification to see at our hospital how largely mankind is being benefited by your labours. I need hardly add that it would afford me the highest gratification to show you how greatly surgery is indebted to you. (Wellcome: The Evolution of Antiseptic Surgery, 1910, pp. 73-74)

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