Murphy-type chloroform inhaler

Made:
1850-1900 in Europe
maker:
Unknown

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Murphy's inhaler for chloroform anaesthesia in midwifery, no maker marked, 1850-1900

Edward William Murphy (1802-1877) invented this chloroform inhaler in 1848-1850. It was used for pain relief during medical procedures. The main drum held a sponge soaked with chloroform, the vapours of which were breathed in by the patient through the trumpet-shaped mouthpiece.

Murphy’s inhaler was mostly used in obstetrics and child birth as it was small and easy to use. It was portable and could be held by the patient instead of the doctor – so he was free to aid the birth. Chloroform was first used as a pain reliever in childbirth in 1847.

Details

Category:
Anaesthesiology
Object Number:
1981-1549
Materials:
iron, paint and sponge
type:
inhaler
taxonomy:
  • furnishing and equipment
  • tools & equipment
credit:
University College Hospital, London