Medicine: Operation at the Palace

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Another assisting surgeon tied off severed blood vessels while Price Thomas worked to remove the lung. A fourth doctor pumped weak solutions of sugar and salt into a vein in the King's ankle, to guard against shock, or gave him blood transfusions if they were necessary. The sterile nurse busily passed threaded needles, and still another nurse adjusted the lights and mopped the surgeons' sweaty brows. Price Thomas and his assistants closed the wound and bandaged the torso.

Instead of Sixpence. The King was wheeled to his own room and infusions were resumed. For two days, he needed sedatives (British doctors favor morphine), and was given only sips of water or juices while he was kept in much the same position as during the operation. After that, Patient George was put on a soft diet, from soft-boiled eggs to such delicacies as steamed fish. Because of his old trouble with poor circulation, it was essential for the King to have a few minutes out of bed each day, as soon as his strength permitted.

British papers proudly quoted Surgeon Price Thomas: "The King is the best patient I ever had. Not only is he brave, but he is full of humor. And he is just like an ordinary individual to deal with." Like the rest of the King's doctors, Price Thomas does not get a sixpence for his services. His likeliest reward: the right to replace the Mr. in front of his name (surgeons in Britain are not called "Dr.") with Sir.

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