infusion, infusion bottle

After the American doctor Donald E. Baxter (1882-1935).

Baxter graduated from the University of Louisville in 1909 as a doctor. He worked in Europe for the American Red Cross during World War I.

Afterwards he went to work at the Rockefeller hospital in Beijing, at a time when China and India were ravaged by major cholera epidemics. Tens of thousands died of dehydration.

Baxter realized that injecting the right solutions directly into the bloodstream could have saved many lives.

But intravenous fluids were not available in either China or the United States. He returned to the US in 1921 and developed the technology that led to safe solutions and the beginning of intravenous therapy, which has now spread worldwide.

Together with the brothers Ralph and Harry Falk, he founded the Don Baxters Intravenous Products company in Chicago in 1931. Baxter had previously experimented with nitrous oxide, x-rays, polio drugs and cosmetics.

For infusions, he developed a vacuum production process that made the solutions sterile. He himself was the first test person for his product. To demonstrate its reliability, he even administered them to his children.

The special infusions of the new company made intravenous therapy possible in the smallest hospitals. The American economy was still stuck in the Great Depression and after only a year the three had to sell their successful product to the competitor American Hospital Supply.

In 1935, Dr. Ralph Falk, who had previously tried his hand at the cattle and potato trade, bought out Don Baxter and began developing the 'Transfusco vac': a bottle for draining and storing blood. Previously, blood could barely be stored for a few hours.

Donald Baxter died in 1935. His wife Delia founded the Donald E. and Delia B. Baxter Foundation in California in 1959, which has since awarded a fortune to support medical research. Based in Deerfield, Illinois, Baxter International retained the Baxter name.

The activities in Belgium date from 1954, a base from which to cover the European market. In the 1950s, Dr. Willem Kolff invented the first artificial kidney at Baxter.

Because most IVs in Belgium were of the Baxter brand, the brand name was quickly transferred to the IV itself.