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Preface

PREFACE

The surgeons who participated in the writing of this history knew each other personally and professionally while in the military and to varying degrees have kept contact following their retirement. Colonel Raymond Bagg, even though his name does not appear as an author on any of the individual chapters, was an important source of information and follow-up data on patients who passed through the 106th General Hospital in Yokohama, Japan. Without this information, including subsequent follow-up, very little could have been said about long-term results in certain areas of this history.

This volume could not have come to completion without the efforts of Charles J. Simpson, who during the beginning of this volume was the director of the Clinical History Program at the Center of Military History in Washington, D.C. His constant enthusiastic interest and input made us want to complete this volume more quickly than it was done. It was Charlie’s idea to have this really be contemporary history so that it could be used in subsequent conflicts and new surgeons might not have to relearn the lessons of the past.

We are all pleased that it is completed. We are sorry that it took so long, but I think it represents our true feelings about the management of the patients from the battlefield through the evacuation system to their final disposition in the United States.

In addition to Charlie Simpson and the individual physicians responsible for writing the chapters of this volume, many others were involved. Included, especially, were the physicians and nurses who took care of the patients on a day-to-day basis, the orthotist and prosthetist who fabricated the external devices, the physical and occupational therapists, and, most importantly, the patients themselves.

In most instances these patients had greater motivation than many of us had seen in any patient population. It was easy for most of the physicians to harness this enthusiasm and energy in the rehabilitation effort of this group of orthopedic patients. This high degree of motivation is responsible for much of the success that we enjoyed in managing this group of patients.

We would like to dedicate this volume to Charles J. Simpson (“Charlie”) and to the patients who are the basis of this volume.

WILLIAM E. BURKHALTER, M.D.