Case of amputation instruments, Scottish, late 18th century.

Case of amputation instruments, Scottish, late 18th century.
3 2 c m
40cm
actual image size: 32cm x 24cm

Description

The case contains a wooden-handled field tourniquet, sutures, asorted knives (the small ones for cutting skin, the large ones for cutting muscle), a small saw for amputating fingers and toes and a surgical saw with a screw to tighten the blade. One of the saws is signed 'Boog', this was an Edinburgh firm which pased through several generations of the family from 1748-1859. Prior to the invention of antiseptics, amputation was often the treatment of first rather than last resort, to prevent infection spreading through the body from injuries and wounds.

© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library

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