Chinese woodcut: Lumbar fixation splint

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Chinese woodcut: Lumbar fixation splint. Wellcome Collection. Public Domain Mark. Source: Wellcome Collection.

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Woodcut from Shangke buyao (Supplement to Traumatology) by Qian Xiuchang, published in 1818 (23rd year of the Jiaqing reign period of the Qing dynasty). The lumbar fixation splint is made out of four pieces of fir wood, shaped like carrying poles, threaded together. In case of sudden, acute strain in the lumbar region, with pain on breathing, injury to the lumbar vertebrae or muscle damage, an analgesic preparation is applied to the splint, which is then fixed at the waist, at either side of the spine. It must be positioned perfectly straight. A thin covering of mugwort is placed over the outside to repel wind cold,and finally a long, broad cloth sash is tied tightly around the waist and abdomen, and appropriate drugs are also administered orally. This was considered an effective cure.


PICTURE TITLE: Illustration showing the use of the lumbar splint


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