In this episode, we will take a look at some of the unsung heroes of the operating room, going back to some of the earliest surgeries. We'll meet some of the interesting roles that developed, including Handlers, Dressers and Surgical Beadles. From there, we'll trace the development of the modern surgical technologist through the 20th century. And of course, we'll take some detours, including meeting the surgeon Frederick Treves, and his famous patient, the Elephant Man!
In this episode, we will follow the history of the repair of inguinal hernias from ancient times, through the age of dissection, to the Renaissance where we will meet the surgeons that influenced our understanding of the anatomy and pathology of hernias. From there, we will cover the first successful tissue repairs, then move on to the era of mesh repairs, and finally, cover the laparoscopic approach. Of course, we'll take a few tangents and learn some interesting facts about hernias!
In this episode, we explore the life of the English surgeon, Sir Astley Cooper, as well as some of his most notable accomplishments. Along the way, we'll cover the infamous story of his nephew, Bransby Cooper, which intersects the beginnings of the medical journal The Lancet, and represents one of the first medico-legal trials on record. Some of our detours will take us to the first carotid artery ligation, done by a naval surgeon while at sea, as well as introducing us to the pioneering vascular surgeon, Rudolph Matas. All that and more in this longer than usual episode!
In this episode, we will explore the introduction of Western style surgery into feudal Japan, during the period of isolation, that lasted from 1639 to 1853. During this time, only a few of the European powers had access to Japan, and for most of that time, it was Holland alone. The Dutch, through trade by the Dutch East Indies Company, held a monopoly on trade with Japan, and came to greatly influence their practice of surgery. Along the way, we'll meet some of these surgeons, as well as a Japanese surgeon who was able to perform major surgery on patients while they slept, a breakthrough that beat the events of the Ether Dome by more than 40 years!
Patients are often placed in the 'lithotomy' position. But where did this come from? We'll cover the history of the surgical procedure for bladder stones, known as lithotomy, which dates back from the earliest records of surgery right up to the beginnings of modern surgery. A number of different surgical approaches were used, and we'll cover their history, as well as meet some of the surgeons (and lithotomists) that had an impact on these operations.
In this episode, we'll cover R Adams Cowley, a surgeon who's single-minded determination reinvented how trauma patients are cared for, and essentially created the field of traumatology. Through his tireless efforts, the state of Maryland created a world-renowned centre for understanding and treating shock in trauma patients. He was an interesting character, to say the least. We will also explore the origins of the concepts of shock as a 'temporary pause in the act of death', and the 'golden hour', the critical window of time to treat shock patients. We'll also review the history of aeromedical evacuation, and of course, some other interesting side stories!
In this episode, we'll cover the relatively rare but interesting thoracic outlet syndrome, discussing its anatomy and causes, including cervical ribs. Along the way, we'll follow the history of the discovery of the syndrome as well as meet some famous surgeons involved in its treatment. And of course, go off on a few tangents, including the end of woolly mammoths!
In this episode, we'll cover the life and works of Dr. Friedrich Trendelenburg. Many may know the name from the "Trendelenburg position", but this German surgeon is known for so much more. We'll cover his other contributions, including his attempts to develop a surgical treatment of pulmonary embolism, and much more!
The heart lung bypass machine replaces the functions of the heart and lungs, allowing surgeons to operate on the heart. Its invention essentially created the specialty of cardiac surgery. Surgeon John Heysham Gibbon Jr. dedicated much of his career to developing this machine. This is that story.
Cochlear implants are an amazing innovation that have had a huge impact on patients. In this episode, we'll cover the history of their development, and highlight the contributions of one surgeon, Dr. William House. As well, we'll discuss some of the controversies behind the implants, and of course, take a few interesting side roads of history.
In this episode, we'll cover the creation of the laser and some of the physics behind it (don't worry, not too much!) and meet the early pioneers of laser development. The story of the first medical lasers will be covered, as well as the more commonly used types and of course, their applications in surgery!
In this episode, we'll cover the life and times of the surgeon for whom "Metz" are named for, Dr. Myron Firth Metzenbaum. We'll look at his work with radium (including some amazing background history on it), the ambulance service in Cleveland, and of course, his instrument. Dr. Metzenbaum also developed an operation and helped found the American Board of Plastic Surgery! Find out all the details in this episode.
In this episode, we will cover the brief but fascinating history of that often-overlooked specialty in the development of modern surgery, the railway surgeon. The birth, rise, and eventual demise of this particular area of practice will be explored, looking at the different roles they played, and how they influenced modern trauma surgery. And of course, we will meet a few interesting characters along the way!
In this episode, we will cover the history of the appendix, from its first description, to its (recently) described function and cover what happens when things go wrong. This includes the first recorded appendectomy, the first definitive description of appendicitis as a separate entity and some of the early surgeons who pioneered operative treatment. Finally, we'll talk about current and possible future management of appendicitis.
In this episode, we will explore the history of the development of the microscope and discuss its use in the operating room. From the very first use, to the pioneers that experimented on attaching tiny blood vessels, to modern uses, including the history of hand and face transplants will be covered!
In this episode, we'll cover the surgeon often referred to as the father of paediatric surgery, Dr. William Edwards Ladd. He has a famous connection to the Halifax Explosion, a tragic accident that occurred almost exactly 100 years ago. We'll explore that connection, and cover Ladd's work in developing the field of paediatric surgery, as well as review the eponymously named Ladd's bands and Ladd's procedure.
In this episode, we will cover the pancreatic surgery commonly known as the Whipple procedure and learn about the life and works of Dr. Allen Oldfather Whipple, the first to successfully attempt the procedure as a single-step operation. As well, we'll describe Whipple's triad, and as always, cover some other interesting medical trivia.
This episode will cover the long history of the development of the surgical stapler, an instrument not often considered in surgical history. Our journey will take us from ancient Rome, to medieval Spain, Hungary, the Soviet Union and finally the US. During our exploration, we will discuss the career of surgeon Dr. Mark Ravitch, the person most responsible for bringing stapling technology out of Russia and introducing it to Western surgical practice.
In this episode, we'll take a bit of a different approach to the history of surgery, and look at some of the insects and other creepy crawlers that have been used to assist in treating patients. We'll cover the use of leeches and maggots in surgery, both in ancient times and in modern practice, as well as some other less well known creatures that have been utilized in fascinating ways. Lots of interesting material to cover!
In this episode, we'll trace the ancient history of cataract treatments, leading to the modern revolutionary invention of the intraocular lens implant. As well, the story of Sir Harold Ridley and his inspiration for inventing this implant will be told, including the connection to WWII royal air force fighter pilots.
Correction: In the podcast, the date given for joining the Royal Army Medical Corps was erroneously given as 1931. It was, in fact, 1941.
To celebrate the 50th episode of Legends of Surgery, this podcast will cover the historical connection between barbers and surgeons, and explore the reasons why, as well as discuss some of the enduring symbols of this relationship.
In this episode, we will explore the history of the surgeon considered to be the father of modern gynaecology. We'll look at his life and works, with the focus on his most recognized achievement, the development of a procedure to correct vesicovaginal fistulas. The controversy of his experimental surgery on slave women in the pre-Civil War south of the United States will be covered, and we'll take a look at some of the arguments both for and against his actions.
In this, the 50th episode, we will cover the life and works of one of the most well known legends of surgery, John Hunter. His early life working at his brother William's anatomy school, his time in the military and rise to prominence will be discussed. Of course, there will be some interesting lesser known stories about him, and a few relevant tangents, including some background on bodysnatchers in 18th century London!
In this episode, we'll cover the story of Will and Charlie Mayo, the brothers that founded what is now known as the Mayo Clinic, a global leader in surgical health care. Their origins will be covered, including the natural disaster that led to the establishment of their practice in Rochester, Minnesota. As well, we'll take a look at how they practiced, and review how their example of collaboration, dedication to patients and humility led to their success.
In this episode, we'll cover the development of the anti-reflux surgery known as the Nissen fundoplication. But there's so much more! The life of Dr. Rudolf Nissen is a fascinating one, and we'll cover his story, including his involvement with one of the most famous scientists of the 20th century, Albert Einstein.