Strychnine may have been medically administered - it was extensively injected into wounded men as a nerve stimulant for the treatment of shock.They knew about blood pressure, and could give intravenous fluid, but they erroneously thought the consequences of blood loss should be treated with stimulants like strychnine.
"In 1890 Professor Horatio Wood recommended the use of strychnine for the treatment of shock. It was quickly taken up by others, and the medical literature was filled with reports of its use. Strychnine is highly poisonous and more famously used to kills rats and other large vermin.In low doses it was regarded as energising; with high doses the muscles tire and the person can’t breathe. The difference between “therapeutic” amounts and overdose was minimal."
The past is not dead. In fact, it's not even past.
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