The Early Modern Commons

Search Results for "Remarkable recoveries"

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Your search for posts with tags containing Remarkable recoveries found 91 posts

The lucky Prussian

Maximilian Joseph von Chelius was a prominent 19th-century German surgeon who had a significant influence on medics right across Europe. His lectures were frequently quoted in the London and Edinburgh journals, and his textbook Handbuch der Chirurgie,...
From: Thomas Morris on 5 Dec 2017

All at sea

When I first came across this stirring tale of improvised surgery at sea I wasn’t at all sure it was true. It appeared in 1852 in a minor journal called The Scalpel, which was published in New York between 1849 and 1864. The journal was edited,...
From: Thomas Morris on 24 Nov 2017

A dangerous hobby

The Royal Academy of Surgery in Paris was founded in 1731 by Louis XV. It was abolished in 1793 following the Revolution, but for the sixty years of its existence it was one of the leading such institutions in Europe – its official journal, the...
From: Thomas Morris on 18 Nov 2017

An interesting and remarkable accident

This is one of those cases that at first reading seems inherently unlikely – but, bizarre as it sounds, has a perfectly rational medical explanation. It took place in the 1830s but was only reported in any detail three-quarters of a century later....
From: Thomas Morris on 17 Oct 2017

Cured by a collision

Serious rail accidents have become such rare events that it’s easy to forget just how dangerous the railways were in Victorian Britain. Between 1840 and 1900 there was not a single year without a death on the rail network. In 1873 alone there were...
From: Thomas Morris on 13 Oct 2017

The accidental hysterectomy

In 1840 one Dr Drane, a physician from Louisville in Kentucky, wrote a short communication to the Western Journal of Medicine and Surgery. The editor was astonished, commenting that the case was “unique in the annals of obstetric medicine”....
From: Thomas Morris on 11 Oct 2017

Cones and bones

You may have seen this recent story about a man who thought he had lung cancer before learning that his persistent cough had an altogether less sinister cause. Doctors discovered that the shadow on his chest X-rays was caused not by a tumour, but by a...
From: Thomas Morris on 28 Sep 2017

Falling pregnant

The seventeenth-century French surgeon François Mauriceau was one of the founders of modern obstetrics. Over several decades he studied every aspect of pregnancy, childbirth and the health of newborn babies, attempting to put the discipline on...
From: Thomas Morris on 21 Sep 2017

An arrow escape

In 1871 the Surgeon-General’s office of the US Government published a document identified simply as Circular no 3. The dull bureaucratic title gives little hint of the varied material within: a comprehensive survey of surgical activity in the US...
From: Thomas Morris on 14 Sep 2017

A span in length

More strange news from the Philosophical Transactions, the venerable journal of the Royal Society. This brief report was contributed in 1720 by Abraham Vater, a German anatomist who was a particular authority on the digestive tract (the ampulla of Vater,...
From: Thomas Morris on 1 Sep 2017

The boy who choked on his gold

I came across this interesting story in the Memoirs of the Royal Academy of Surgery at Paris, a collection of cases published in English in 1750. Until I looked into it more thoroughly I didn’t realise that this is not just a curiosity but a genuinely...
From: Thomas Morris on 22 Aug 2017

A forgotten thing

This case, published in the Buffalo Medical and Surgical Journal in 1865, is one that makes you marvel at the resilience of the human body. The author, John C. Hutchison, was barely nineteen – young to be writing articles for medical journals –...
From: Thomas Morris on 19 Aug 2017

The healing power of nature

At the annual meeting of the Provincial Medical and Surgical Association in August 1844, a doctor from Newport Pagnell in Buckinghamshire, Edward Daniell, presented this unusual case. He prefaced his account with the observation that it would ‘perhaps...
From: Thomas Morris on 11 Aug 2017

The 43-year pregnancy

In years gone by, it was quite common for a doctor to pass on his practice to one of his children: successive generations of medics might serve their local community for decades. The Watkins family, originally from the Northamptonshire town of Towcester,...
From: Thomas Morris on 4 Aug 2017

The cheese knife lobotomy

This alarming headline was attached to a letter sent to The Lancet in 1838 by Dr Congreve Selwyn, a family physician in Cheltenham. His brief communication related the story of an unfortunate accident which had taken place in his practice some 17 years...
From: Thomas Morris on 30 Jul 2017

The man whose intestines twinkled like stars

Every so often I read an old medical case that makes me wince and ask myself, “However did they recover from that?” This tale, reported 142 years ago in the Richmond and Louisville Medical Journal, falls squarely into this category. The initial...
From: Thomas Morris on 23 Jul 2017

The case of the drunken Dutchman’s guts

On August 28th 1641 the 21-year-old English diarist John Evelyn visited the great university of Leiden in the Netherlands. He was unimpressed, declaring it ‘nothing extraordinary’, but one building took his fancy: Among all the rarities of...
From: Thomas Morris on 19 Jul 2017

Hook, line and Lister

In 1844 the great surgeon Joseph Lister gave an influential series of lectures at University College London on the technique of surgery. The second lecture in this series, concerning operations on the neck, includes this unusual case: Occasionally you...
From: Thomas Morris on 7 Jul 2017

The lancer lanced

On November 9th 1869 a private from the 5th Royal Irish Lancers, ‘Richard F.’, arrived at the Royal Victoria Hospital in Netley, a large military hospital on the south coast of England. He had been evacuated from Lucknow in Uttar Pradesh,...
From: Thomas Morris on 15 Jun 2017

A strange tale

Today’s tale is a ‘news in brief’ item published by The Medical Standard in 1895: Drs. Hart and Watts of the Bellevue Hospital staff report a case in which a machinist working at a wire machine heard something snap and felt a violent...
From: Thomas Morris on 13 Jun 2017

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