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MODERN HISTORY OF PERIPHERAL NERVE SURGERY World War II and the Postwar Study of Peripheral Nerve Regeneration

JAMA. 1949;139(9):564-566. doi:10.1001/jama.1949.02900260010003.
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It is perhaps a truism to state that the student of modern peripheral nerve surgery must be a student of military neurosurgery. Advances in this field, however, have always been directly related to two factors: (1) the decided increase in peripheral nerve injuries that always occurs as a result of war and (2) laboratory studies that have been embarked on because of the stimulus of problems that arise from this unusual mass of clinical material. For the purposes of this survey, the modern history of peripheral nerve surgery will be considered as starting in the latter part of 1942 and as reaching a clear end point with certain peripheral nerve regeneration studies now being conducted under the aegis of the National Research Council. This time limitation is admittedly an artificial one, and indeed the survey itself cannot be a complete one, but it covers a period in which some fifteen


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