Stretcher bearer's instrument case, England, 1900-1914
During a battle, the role of stretcher bearers was to locate and then remove the wounded from the battlefield. They often carried canvas rolls of instruments like this one to provide emergency first aid and apply dressings. This kit is incomplete, but still contains pins, a large needle, a spatula, artery forceps and a roll of strong thread. Artery forceps are used to compress heavily bleeding arteries.
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Glossary: first aid
Treatment that is rendered initially for the care of an emergent condition. It is usually performed by a lay person to a sick or injured patient until definitive medical treatment can be accessed
Glossary: artery forceps
forceps are a two-bladed instrument with a handle for compressing or grasping tissues in surgical operations, and for handling sterile dressings, etc. Artery forceps are for specifically grasping and compressing an artery.
Glossary: dressing case