Needle, subcutaneous perfusion


about 1900



Anesthesia is more than the art of getting the patient to sleep. An essential element of the revival is the filling of the circulation with infusion solutions. By the end of the nineteenth century, evidence had been provided that subcutaneous, intraperitoneal, rectal, or intravenous administration of saline could be life-saving in life-threatening bleeding.

The 1st WW promoted the spread of infusion technology with its many shock victims. Since no ready-made solutions were available in the market, so-called "serum saline solutions" were used, which every surgeon could prepare himself by sterilizing water by boiling and adding salt in powder form. Ready-made in ampoules glucose solutions were available from the mid-20s at the company "Saxon serum works".


Intravenous access was too cumbersome for many procedures, so many surgeons preferred subcutaneous infusion.


Presented is a 10.5 cm long needle made of V2A steel for subcutaneous infusion from the possession of the Saarbrücken doctor Stephan Zimmer, which has two lateral holes, which helped to infiltrate the solution quickly into the subcutaneous fatty tissue (usually the thigh). To infuse larger quantities, the solution was supplemented with hyaluronidase, a digestive enzyme which dissolved the connective tissue hardenings and, as it were, made the fat a sponge for water.