NATIVE AMERICAN CONTRIBUTIONS
Native Americans used small animal bladders and thin, hollow bird bones to make bulbed syringes. They sharpened and beveled one end of the bone, shaping it into an object similar to a modern day hypodermic needle. They then attached the unsharpened end of the bone to a small animal bladder, which held the medication for injecting or irrigating wounds. The Catawba of the North American Southeast developed a unique tubular syringe that worked by telescoping, with one tube fitting inside another, much like today's syringes. The device is responsible for saving innumerable lives throughout the world. It keeps many insulin dependent diabetics alive and functioning and is used to inoculate or immunize people and animals against crippling, potentially fatal diseases.