Glaucoma; its symptoms, varieties, pathology and treatment

Catalogue Number: 1891
Glaucoma; its symptoms, varieties, pathology and treatment
Category: Book
Sub-Category: Book of historical note
Author: STIRLING Alex W
Year Of Publication/Manufacture: 1898
Time Period: 19th C
Place Of Publication/Manufacture: St Louis, USA
Publisher/Manufacturer: Jones H Parker
Description Of Item: Original green cloth covers, 177 pages, 12 figures (mostly photographs) in text. Rubber stamp for Ophthalmic Review Edinburgh on front fly leaf.
Historical Significance: Alex W Stirling MD CM (Edin) DPH (Lond) was a British trained ophthalmologist who moved to the USA to work in New York where he had various teaching and hospital appointments. The book is based on his lectures to students of the New York based Post-Graduate Medical School and Hospital that were also published in Annals of Ophthalmology. This book is an early textbook devoted entirely to glaucoma. An eye disease asociated with a hard eye has been known since 400BC and is described in Arabic writings of the 10th C AD. Dr Richard Bannister (1622), an English oculist and author of the first book of ophthalmology in English, made the first original and clear recognition of a disease with a tetrad of features: eye tension (hard eye), long duration of the disease, the absence of perception of light and the presence of a fixed pupil. The first excellent description of glaucoma with raised ocular tension was given by the French Dr Antoine-Pierre Demours in 1818. Dr G.J. Guthrie (1823) recognized hardness of the eye as characteristic of a disease which he called GLAUCOMA. Finally, the essential feature of raised eye tension was fully established by Dr William McKenzie, renowned Scottish clinician (1835) who, in the second edition of his classical and widely read textbook, ascribed the raised tension in both chronic and acute glaucoma. (See Cat 34 and 205 for the 4th Ed). The invention of the ophthalmoscope in 1851 by Helmholtz enabled the optic atrophy of glaucoma to be observed. The final clinical observation in this epoch was the unifying concept of Dr Donders (1862) where he described an incapacitating increased eye tension occurring without any inflammatory symptoms as simple glaucoma. However, it was not until 1902 that Schiotz described and demonstrated his tonometer (Cat No 992), although Fick, Priestley-Smith and others had developed earlier tonometers in the late 1880s to replace the then standard method of digital palpation of the eye.
How Acquired: Purchased by Kett Museum (Abe books $65)
Date Acquired: Aug 2011
Condition: Fair to good
Location: Archive room. East wall. Books of historical note

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