Early inhaler for ether anaesthesia

Made:
1847-1848 in London England and London
maker:
Weiss, John

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Creative Commons LicenseThis image is released under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 Licence

Buy this image as a print 

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License this image for commercial use at Science and Society Picture Library

License

Creative Commons LicenseThis image is released under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 Licence

Buy this image as a print 

Buy

License this image for commercial use at Science and Society Picture Library

License

Creative Commons LicenseThis image is released under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 Licence

Buy this image as a print 

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License this image for commercial use at Science and Society Picture Library

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Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Science Museum Group
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum, London.

Science Museum Group
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum, London.

Science Museum Group
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum, London.

Science Museum Group
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum, London.

Science Museum Group
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum, London

Early inhaler for ether anaesthesia, ether bottle connected by tubing to face mask, by Weiss of London, 1847-1848

Ether was first used as an anaesthetic in 1846 during the removal of a tooth. The dentist was William Thomas Green Morton (1819-1868), an American. This inhaler is adapted from Morton’s original. Morton called his invention the ‘Letheon Inhaler’ to keep the anaesthetising agent, ether, a secret and to control who used it.

Ether-soaked sponges were placed in the glass jar. Flexible rubber tubing connected the valve to the face mask so the patient could inhale the ether. The outlet valve has a glass tube attached so more ether can be put on the sponges if needed.

Details

Category:
Anaesthesiology
Collection:
Sir Henry Wellcome's Museum Collection
Materials:
brass (copper, zinc alloy), cloth, complete, glass, metal, metal (unknown), rubber (unidentified), sponge and wood (unidentified)
Measurements:
overall - as displayed: 265 mm x 315 mm x 185 mm, 85 mm, 1.14 kg
Identifier:
A625399
type:
inhaler
taxonomy:
  • furnishing and equipment
  • tools & equipment
credit:
Loan, Wellcome Trust