May 11 7:00pm
The “Great Risk” of “Opium Eating”: Opiates, Army Doctors, and Civil War Veterans, Jonathan Jones, Binghamton University
By treating badly wounded Civil War soldiers with the only pain medications of the day – the highly addictive drugs opium and morphine – military doctors and surgeons inadvertently caused an epidemic of opiate addiction during the 1860s-1880s. Americans quickly realized the magnitude of this devastating health crisis. In response to harsh public criticism, physicians took a series of radical steps to try to stop the opiate epidemic in its tracks – a situation that mirrors today’s opioid epidemic.
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This series is generously sponsored by Welliver.