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Wyndam Bolling Blanton diary, 4 August-19 September 1915

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Aug 25 '15. Vic. off for the week end. In late afternoon went down to see Jap. & Russian hospitals but found we were too late to get in. Houston accompanied me. Stayed at hospital at night to write up a number of histories. This afternoon I solved a problem. Many times after walking a long ways I have noticed that my hands were swollen & stiff & could be closed c [with] difficulty. The same thing occurred this afternoon in walking up from the Etoile & the explanation dawned on me. When one walks the hands are pendant & much lower than when sitting or using the hands. Now when one who is not accustomed to walking walks his hands become plethoric from a faulty return circulation because the vaso motor symptom of his hands & arms have not been educated to the increased hydrostatic pressure due to the changed position. A person who walks much would soon overcome this, the same condition holds in the legs. Let a person be sick for a long while in bed & for a week or more after getting up he will complain of oedema of the feet. I had this brought signally home to me in a case the other day