BRIT. J. SURG., 1969. Vol. 56, No. 4. April.

The Idle Thoughts of a Surgical Fellow, being an Account of Experimental Surgical Studies 1956-1966. By STACEY B. DAY. Pp. 344. Illustrated. 1968. Montreal: Cultural and Educational Productions. £5 10s.

THIS is an interesting book which gives a vivid account of experimental surgical studies of a surgical fellow during the years 1956-66.The book covers a wide range of subjects from many parts of the world. The author is very versatile, for besides this book he has published a volume of verse and several plays.The author gives a fascinating account of the Irish Giant Deer including the historical and geological background of this animal.
Perhaps the most interesting article from the surgical point of view is the author's Moynihan Prize Essay of 1960 which is published for the first time—the subject: The Surgical Treatment of Ischaemic Heart Disease. This is an extensive and interesting experimental and clinical study with an account of the coronary and intercoronary circulation in man and animals. At the end of this article there are no less than 545 references. No idle thoughts here. The author has a notable background which makes one realize that he is well fitted to write this book.
Having qualified at the Royal College of Surgeons of Ireland in 1955, he was awarded the Reuben Harvey Triennial Prize, Royal College of Physicians of Ireland, in 1958, and the Moynihan Prize and Medal of the Association of Surgeons of Great Britain and Ireland in 1960. He was awarded the Ciba Fellowship, Canada, in 1963, and in 1964 he was awarded the Ph.D. in Experimental Surgery by McGill University, Montreal, Canada.
An outstanding book that every surgeon will wish to possess.

THE NEW ENGLAND JOURNAL OF MEDICINE - (Mar. 27. 1969). The Idle Thoughts of a Surgical Fellow. By Stacey B. Day. 344 pp., illustrated. Montreal: Cultural and Educational Productions, 1968. $12.90.
About half of this volume is given over to a publication of the author's Moynihan Prize Essay of 1960 on the surgical treatment of ischemic heart disease. The essay is an exhaustive editorial treatment of the subject, with a staggering list of references and altogether a useful summary for someone interested in this developing field. I find no reason to take issue with the prize committee of the Association of Surgeons of Great Britain and Ireland, but certainly the essay is hardly a collection of idle thoughts.
The other half of the book is made up of a kaleidoscope of thoughtlets, opinions and laboratory shoptalk. The initial autobiographic notes of student days in Dublin are in the Joyce tradition and pleasant to read. Next is a learned discourse on the subject of the Irish giant deer that will probably be the last word on the subject for most of us. There is a somewhat well organized essay on the development of the modern surgical mask and gown, and this chapter should someday prove useful to a medical student about to prepare a "topic" on the subject. There are innumerable reports of short experimental projects strung together with a literary style also reminiscent of Joyce in his more telegraphic moods. The net result is very Irish.
Altogether, it is an interesting book for browsing, somewhat disappointing, perhaps, in its failure to live up to its rather pretentious title, but a useful reference for anyone who will venture to study the flow of blood in vessels and notably the coronaries. I do not believe that this is the use that the author had in mind, but there it is.


Idle Thoughts of a Surgical Fellow, by STACEY B. DAY. Montreal, Cultural and Educational Productions, 1968, pp. 344, illus., £5 10s. 0d.

In spite of its title this book is a serious work by a surgeon who has many interests which range from pathological observation on the bones of the extinct Giant Irish Deer to a discussion on the best way to build a radiation-free room. The most important part of the book is contained in Chapter IV which contains an essay for which in 1960 the author was awarded the Moynihan Prize and Medal; the subject was ‘The Surgical Treatment of Ischaemic Heart Disease’ and special consideration is given to the variations of the coronary circulation. A review is given of all the surgical methods then available for increasing the coronary circulation. This essay is followed by a list of over 500 references which should prove of value to medical historians. This chapter is followed by an account of several cases in which an anastomosis was made between the pulmonary artery and the left atrium of the heart for patients suffering from severe angina pectoris.
The chapter entitled "Idle thoughts culled from the history of medicine” does not contain much that is new and is somewhat disappointing. In the interesting section on ‘Dress for surgeons’ the story of the development of the antiseptic and aseptic techniques is described but the name of Alexander Ogston as the discoverer of the staphylococcus is not mentioned.
Throughout the book the author mentions many ideas which occur to him which appear trivial but might become more important at some future date.
At the end of the book there is a photograph of the author with a brief account of his chief achievements; an account of his undergraduate days in Dublin is given in an introductory chapter that is appropriately headed ‘A Touch of the Green.’

The Idle Thoughts of a Surgical Fellow. Being an Account of Experimental Surgical Studies 1956-1966. By STACEY B. DAY, PH.D, LRCPI, LRCSI. 22.5 x 14.5 cm. Pp 344. Illustrated. 1968. Montreal. Cultural and Educational Productions. £5 10S. (£5.50).

Edward Stevens. Gastric Physiologist, Physician and American Statesman. Edited by Stacey B. Day. 22.5 x 14.5 cm. Pp 179. 1969. Cincinnati. Cultural and Educational Productions. £5 (£5.00).

Stacey Biswas Day, who was born in I.ondon, came to Dublin, entered the medical school of this College and after a course of sustained distinction graduated in 1955. He made a mark here not only in academic pursuits—his general cultural accomplishments, including an able editorship of the students' journal Mistura, have not been forgotten by all who knew him here. It is no surprise, therefore, that he has produced an account of ten years' outstanding work in experimental surgery, which began soon after graduation and was pursued in the U.S.A. and Canada. And with excessive modesty he calls the tremendous activity of those ten years 'idle thoughs'!
While a student at the Meath Hospital, Day's surgical teacher, Mr. Henry Stokes, inspired in him also an interest in Megaceros, the giant extinct Irish Deer (commonly termed the Irish Elk) and its bone lesions as revealed by radiology. His work on this animal and its paleopathology is fully described and illustrated in this volume. But the book is mainly concerned with investigation of the coronary and intercoronary circulation in man and animals. The importance of his results is testified by his gaining, only five years after graduation, the Moynihan prize and medal of the Association of Surgeons of Great Britain and Ireland in 1960, for an essay entitled The Surgical Treatment of Ischaemic Heart Disease, the text of which is now published for the first- time. In addition to further studies relating to advanced coronary disease and coronary blood flow problems, subsequent chapters deal with problems in renal physiology and other surgical research laboratory investigations; also one on thoughts culled from the history of medicine which includes an account of the development of dress for surgeons. Dr. Day is at present Assistant Professor of Research Surgery in the department of Professor William A. Altemeier, University of Cincinnati School of Medicine. Dr Day is also Associate Director of Basic Medical Research at Shriners Hospital Burns Institute, the largest burn trauma institute in the U.S.A.; and he is a Research Surgeon at Christ's Hospital, Cincinnati. His work is concerned with liver transplantation, immunology of tumours, pathophysiology of Curling's ulcer, and the toxins of Clostridia in humans. He also edits the Medical Bulletin and teaches gross anatomy. His PhD was awarded by McGill University, Montreal, for Experimental Surgery, in 1964.

As mentioned above, Dr. Day's interests have from his student days ranged beyond the clinic and the laboratory. He has also written and published drama, verse, and medical history. The second work noted above, which he has edited, is concerned with Edward Stevens, who came from the West Indies in the eighteen-seventies to study medicine at Edinburgh. Stevens' MD thesis, unlike the majority of hundreds of such writings by successful candidates, remains of permanent interest. Entitled Dissertation de alimentorum concoctione (Edinburgh, 1777), it was a contribution to the study of digestion, in which two of the major investigators of his time were Reaumur and Spallanzani. In his efforts to confirm and expand Reaumur's work, Stevens became the first to isolate human gastric juice, but his efforts were overshadowed by the greater names of those above mentioned. The experimental portion of Stevens' thesis was translated into English and published in an English translation of Spallanzani, A dissertation relative to the natural history of animals and vegetables (London, 1784). This is reprinted in the book now under review, together with its preface and twelve introductory chapters, so that the entirety of the thesis is now published in translation for the first time, through the collaboration of the editor with Dr. Roy A. Swanson and Mr. Leo Jurgensons, Division of Classics of the University of Minnesota. Dr. Day has provided notes on the thesis and given a biography of Stevens. Also included is a correspondence between Stevens and Benjamin Rush during the yellow fever epidemic of 1793, and a final chapter on Edward Stevens as consul general of the U.S.A. in Santo Domingo. Altogether, the editor's competent work and his provision of so much material obviously difficult to come by has given the most complete account yet available of a notable American physician.

Both volumes are excellently produced, a pleasure to handle, and full of interest, scientific and historical.
Journal of the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland.


Copyright © 1969 by The Williams & Wilkins Co.

Vol. 57. No. 9.

EDWARD STEVENS, GASTRIC PHYSIOLOGIST, PHYSICIAN , and AMERICAN STATESMAN. Edited by Stacey B. Day, M.D. 179 pp., $11.95. Cultural and Educational Productions, Cincinnati, Ohio, 1969.

One of the most remarkable physicians of today is Dr. Stacey B. Day. Splendidly trained as a surgeon he has a great flair for doing splendid literary research. Dr. Day, born in London, served in the British Army; he was a graduate of the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland; he interned in New York; he spent 4 years in surgery at the University of Minnesota, 1 year in London, and 4 years at McGill University in Montreal. He taught at McGill and he was a Clinical Assistant Professor of Surgery at New Jersey College of Medicine and Dentistry. He has written poems; he has written a play in four acts, "By the Waters of Babylon," and another play, "East of West." His "The Idle Thoughts of a Surgical Fellow," an account of experimental surgical studies carried out from 1956 to 1966, is a remarkable book. Many years ago I heard of a Dr. Edward Stevens, who had written a splendid inaugural sertation on gastric digestion, but never could learn much about him. Now in this book, Dr. Day has gathered together an enormous amount of information on Stevens, not only on his work on gastric digestion, which was like that of Beaumont and Spallanzani, but also on his work on yellow fever in the great American epidemic of 1793. Stevens' great dissertation on digestion was written at Edinburgh in 1777. One reason perhaps why it was not much noticed was that in those days scientific medical work had to be written in Latin. Thus, for many men the dissertation had first to be translated into English. The thesis was translated a bit and abstracted here and there, but it never got to be well known because it appeared in rare journals.
On page 60 Dr. Day says that Stevens saw that digestion was not due to heat, trituration, putrefaction, or fermentation alone, but due to a powerful solvent, which was secreted by the inner coat of the stomach. Stevens had sense enough early to ask what defends the stomach from being digested by the gastric juices, and said it must be a "vital principle." As Dr. Day says, Stevens ranks among the greatest and earliest of the gastric physiologists. In notes on pages 68 to 78 Dr. Day tells of the many physiologists who in the early days attempted to understand digestion.
Interestingly, Stevens, who was born on the little island of St. Croix in the West Indies, early went to the United States where he worked for a while with Benjamin Rush and, because he was a close friend of Alexander Hamilton, he was sent as consul general of the United States to Santo Domingo. Dr. Day succeeded in finding many letters that passed between Stevens and leading politicians in the United States.
Dr. Day feels that Stevens was a great man. He says he can no longer be called an obscure physician of Edinburgh, when actually he became an important figure in early American history. As Dr. Day says, Stevens can now take his place, not only among the greatest of gastrointestinal physiologists, but also some of the leading characters in the early history of the United States.


Dr. Stacey B. Day
c/o Cultural and Educational Production
1041 St-Gregory
Mount Adams
Cincinnati, Ohio 45202

Dear Dr. Day:
Just a note to congratulate you on "The Idle Thoughts of a Surgical Fellow," which I read recently, and now "Edward Stevens, Gastric Physiologist Physician and American Statesman." What a remarkable chap you are, to be a very "well trained surgeon and also a poet and a playwright and a marvelous historian. I can imagine how much work it took to learn so much about Stevens.
I am a bit like you in that after 1913, when I was at Harvard, working in Dr. Walter B. Cannon's laboratory, until 1945 or so when I finished writing the fourth edition of my Introduction to Gastroenterology, I was pretty much of a book-worm as you. I remember reading somewhere about Stevens and his dissertation, but I doubt if I ran into much information about it. It is a joy therefore to read about it now.
You are certainly a man after my own heart and if you ever come through Chicago try to save enough time so as to come and have luncheon or dinner with me.


Walter C. Alvarez, M. D.

WCA/db (July 28, 1969).

THE MEDICAL JOURNAL OF AUSTRALIA 77-79 ARUNDEL STREET, GLEBE SYDNEY, N.S.W. 2037. With the Editor’s Compliments. Issue of July 25, 1970.
Edward Stevens: Gastric Physiologist, Physician and American Statesman, with a Complete Translation of His Inaugural Dissertation De Alimentorum Concoctionc and Interpretive Notes on Gastric Digestion along with Certain other Selected and Diplomatic Papers, Edited by Stacey B. Day; 1969. Cincinnati, Ohio: Cultural and Educational Productions. pp. 180. Price: not stated.
DR STEVENS may not be known to most medical practitioners, but is well known to all gastro-enterologists because of his early observations on gastric juice. The latter observations were made while he was a physician in Edinburgh. However, as is pointed out in this book, Stevens was also an important figure in early American history, because of his activity during the great yellow-fever epidemic in Philadelphia in 1793 and as Consul-General of the United States to Santo Domingo.
The book begins with a biographical note on the life of Dr Edward Stevens and his observations related to gastric function, and subsequently describes, chiefly in the form of transcripts of letters, his roles during the yellow-fever epidemic and as Consul-General in Santo Domingo. To most readers, the greatest value of the book will be in its providing a full translation of Stevens' thesis "De Alimentorum Concoctione", written in 1777. As Day emphasizes, with Stevens rests the privilege of being the first investigator to isolate human gastric juice, and to prove that there was a constituent therein that played a part in the assimilation of food. His observations rank with those of Reaumur and Beaumont.
This book is recommended to all interested in gastric physiology who have a sense of history. To those not interested in gastric secretion, the epidemiology of yellow fever or 18th century American history, it will have little interest. However, all those who claim these interests will owe a debt of gratitude to the author of this small book.

BELLECHASSE by Stacey B. Day, Cultural & Educational Books and Publishing, Montreal. Reviewed by Bluebell Phillips, Canadian Author & Bookman.
A story is the writer and the reader; if one eludes the other, there is no story. Within the circumference of a paradox I found this true of me and STACEY DAY in his contemporary Montreal novel - BELLECHASSE - symbolically pavement, rich earth and lobelia - for the story kept eluding me BUT, paradoxically, I never lost touch with the author and his foreword: "I crossed Bellechasse late one evening....there began this story.... of passage through one street in a life that has walked many streets".

BELLECHASSE is an odd mixture of the fey and the realistic, the earthy and the philosophic.

On Acid Humor Arising From Foods And On White Magnesia. (The Latin Thesis De Humore Acido a Cibis Orto, et Magnesia Alba), by JOSEPH BLACK.1754. Translated by Thomas Hanson, B.S. Department of Classics, University of Minnesota.

With an introduction by Stacey B. Day, M.D., Ph.D., D.Sc.
Conservator and Head, Bell Museum of Pathobiology University of Minnesota Medical School.

A specially prepared edition by the Bell Museum of Pathology, University of Minnesota Medical School, under the direction of Stacey B. Day, to commemorate the seventy-fifth birthday of Regents Professor Owen H. Wangensteen, Emeritus Professor and former Chairman of the Department of Surgery, University of Minnesota Medical School.

Edited by Stacey B. Day,MD. 0-306.42187-9/344 pp.Index/ill./1986/$34.50 ($41.40 outside US & Canada).

The first edition of CANCER, STRESS, AND DEATH was a landmark in integrating biopsychosocial relationships in the fields of cancer care. Following the deaths of Professor Selye and Doctor Tache, the second edition has been expanded by Professor Day to embrace new findings in the field, and to update the complex relationships between cancer and human stress by compiling studies with a wide global background. This second edition brings together contemporary findings from Finland, USSR, West Germany, England, Japan, and West Africa, as well as from the USA. The book examines critical issues that encompass biopsychosocial imperatives—social, cultural, and psychological factors in cancer patient care, including health communications, hospice care, and terminal care and therapeutic regimens for the terminally ill cancer patient.
Interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary, this book is a central resource for those involved in work with cancer patients. It will be of interest to general practitioners, health psychologists, psychiatrists, nurse practitioners, and physician educators everywhere.
This collection, written by first-rank authors from many countries, covers various aspects of the basic questions and problems of life towards its end . . . absolutely no question that this book is more than overdue!
H. D. Fischer, Ruhr-Universitat, Bochum, Federal Republic of Germany

"CANCER, STRESS, AND DEATH, should be on the bookshelf of every educated adult. Students of the behavioral sciences will find it a rich mine of information. It has something for nearly everyone."
—Lade Wosornu, King Faisal University, Dammam, Saudi Arabia

"This edition is highly informative, broad in content, and quite entirely stimulating. It will appeal to all members ot the health care team, and I believe it will also appeal to patients and potential patients. The book is to be well recommended in all of its themes and in their presentations."
—Thomas A. Lambo, Deputy Director General, World Health Organization, Geneva, Switzerland

«... CANCER, STRESS, AND DEATH, Second Edition is an integrated and synthetic approach to these three fields . . .[it] shall be welcomed by biomedical readers of the different specialities."
—Amador Neghme, President, Academia Chilena de Medicina, Santiago, Chile

"... a remarkable source of knowledge and wisdom intended and succeeding to a considerable extent to help in alleviating the unbearable, comprehending the mysterious, and facing the inevitable."
—Academia Professor Pavel Bogovski, Director, Institute of Experimental and Clinical Medicine, Tallinn, Estonia; Formerly, Deputy-Director, International Cancer Union (W.H.O.), Lyons, France.


Bushido is the moral code of the samurai of the era of Feudal Japan. As warriors (samurai) they belonged to the highest of the four social classes of the day- bushi, farmers, artisans, and merchants, and were guaranteed their livelihood by service to their Lord. As a Chinese proverb says, "Well fed, well bred". The samurai were in fact well fed and well bred. This was the basis upon which they were destined to learn etiquette. There were many samurai acquainted with etiquette, and this training became incorporated into bushido.
With the passing of the Feudal Ages in Japan, much of the etiquette of the samurai disappeared, although its fundamental social basis has survived through time until the present day, in various manners. The most significant teachings coming down to us now, exist in the form of codes, the principal ones being the Gorin Sho (Five Rings Precepts) of Miyamoto Musashi, the Budo Shoshin Shu (Rudiments of the Precepts of Samurai) by Yuzan Daidoji, and the Hagakure by Yamamoto Jocho. We may best be able to have insight into bushido through the above mentioned analects.
Of these three codes, Stacey Day has shown unusual and remarkably keen interest in the Hagakure. He has completed an excellent commentary in a short period, and this is now published as The Wisdom Of Hagakure.
The signal characteristics of the present book may be outlined as:
— A commentary on bushido by a non-Japanese writer.
— The author is, by background, not a philosopher nor a historian, but a medical educator who was originally trained as a surgical doctor.
There are also, in Japan, several examples of professional medical doctors who have extended deep understanding and contributed to the acceptance of bushido. Ohgai Mori and Mokichi Saito are excellent examples. These two medical doctors are well known as good novelists and poets. We have heard also that Stacey Day has an outstanding spirit for poetry. In this respect, he shares spiritual harmony with the author of the Hagakure, Yamamoto Jocho. It may be said that Stacey Day's understanding of the Hagakure is all the more distinguished because of his spirit for poetry.
We must remember also, that this spirit was sustained and nurtured by the good will, effort, and friendship of Professor Kiyoshi Inokuchi and Professor Hideo Koga, both of whom assisted and guided Professor Day through this work until publication.
Tetsushi Furukawa
Emeritus Professor of Philosophy,
University of Tokyo.