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How Civil War Medication Led to America’s Very first Opioid Disaster

In the course of the Civil War, military hospitals thought of opioids to be critical medicine. Physicians and nurses used opium and morphine to take care of soldiers’ soreness, quit internal bleeding and mitigate vomiting and diarrhea prompted by infectious diseases. Nonetheless, this led some soldiers to build opioid addictions, both during the war or afterward when they sought medical cure for wartime accidents or diseases.

For lots of Civil War veterans, opioid addictions were life-ruining. Veterans’ dependency made them fatigued and emaciated, and could guide to a fatal overdose. In some cases, opioid dependancy could threaten a veteran’s potential to acquire a pension. In 1895, a Union veteran named Charles L. Williams mentioned in an software to a soldiers’ residence that he was “totally unable to receive a living” due to the fact he experienced “contracted [the] opium routine all through war.”