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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 49.djvu/403

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MASSAGE IN SPRAINS AND DISLOCATIONS.

at Bonn, injected corresponding joints of rabbits with Indian ink. Witb each rabbit he masséed one of the joints at regular intervals, and left the same joint in the other limb untouched. The swelling and stiffness caused by the injection rapidly disappeared under massage, and on examination of the masséed joint after the animal was killed it was found empty of its colored contents. Even when the examination was made shortly after the injection and the use of massage, there was scarcely any ink found in the joint; part of it was found upon the synovial membrane, and upon microscopical examination it was seen that the greatest part of it had been forced into and penetrated through the synovial membrane. The darkened lymphatics could even be seen with the unaided eye extending from the injected joint to the lymphatic glands in the groin or axilla, and these latter were also black from the absorption of the ink. Upon examination of the joint cavities that had not been masséed, the ink was found in the joint, mixed with the synovia, forming a smeary mass, and it had not even penetrated the tissue of the synovial membrane. The same results were uniformly obtained in all the experiments, showing that absorption takes place from joint cavities by means of lymph spaces and small openings communicating with lymphatic vessels, and through these with lymphatic glands.

But by far the most interesting experiments yet performed to elucidate the effects of massage on joints, muscles, and nerves are those described at length in the Archives générales de Médecine for 1891 and 1892. Having obtained excellent results from massage in bruises of joints and muscles, in sprains and dislocations, and also in fractures, some of which were masséed from the commencement of the injury when there was no displacement, and others where there was displacement, after a fixed dressing had been applied as short a time as possible to keep the parts in place, M. Castex sought further opportunities to study more exactly the results of these injuries by intentionally producing them in corresponding places in two limbs of dogs, masséing the seat of one of these injuries and letting the other alone, and after five or six months killing the animals and examining the tissues that had been hurt under the microscope. He always chose the more injured limb for treatment and the other had no massage, but was left to the natural evolutions of the injuries. The effects, immediate, consecutive, and remote, were carefully noted by experts in laboratory work, who were not told which leg had been massêed. The experiments were done in the laboratory of Prof. Richet. The massage was done either immediately or very soon after the injuries—even in the case of the dislocations, as soon as they were set—and always with marked