Primary evidence of seton therapy at Tarban Creek, New South Wales, 1839
Objective: We aimed to find and explore the earliest available New South Wales asylum medical records to identify any management or therapeutic data that might be of interest to the psychiatric field. Conclusions: The earliest known existing records of New South Wales asylum data are from Tarban Creek Asylum. After almost two centuries the preserved records allow insight into treatment used in early colonial Australia, including the scarcely remembered seton therapy. This finding highlights the importance of preserving historical records. It also demonstrates the necessity and/or evolving wish within the colony to care for patients with perceived mental health difficulties based on a shared medical culture inherited from techniques used in Britain.
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