There is no subject of greater interest to the practical surgeon than the arrest of hæmorrhage. This remark is equally true whether the hæmorrhage comes from a wound accidentally inflicted, or one made intentionally, by the surgeon's knife.
Without the means of stopping the flow of blood from bleeding vessels, the surgeon's art would be greatly crippled, and surgical operations, where blood-vessels must be divided, would be impossible.
There is no sight so appalling as a formidable hæmorrhage. When a large artery is opened, the blood gushes out in an angry stream, the face becomes pale, the color leaves the lips, the respiration becomes sighing, the heart fails to beat, and death closes the scene. Without any knowledge of the circulation or nature of the blood, or of the means by which its flow from a wound could be arrested, what a terrible and mysterious sight it must have been