Mr Dendy’s egg-cup case

Discovery of a large egg-cupIn 1834 the Lancet published a wonderfully unusual article by Walter Dendy, a surgeon from Blackfriars in London. The heading at the top of each page refers to it simply as ‘Mr Dendy’s Egg-Cup Case’ – a splendid description of a splendid case:

Mr Adams, a man 60 years of age, had been afflicted with inguinal hernia 25 years, which, Read more

The most eccentric physician who ever lived

Dr Messenger Monsey was one of the best-known physicians in eighteenth-century London, although probably not one of the most capable. He began his career as an obscure country doctor in Suffolk, but his fortunes changed after he was summoned to the bedside of an influential aristocrat, the Earl of Godolphin, who had suffered a ‘fit of apoplexy’. Whether by … Read more

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. This article was contributed to the Buffalo Medical Journal by Dr Roswell Park, the founder of … Read more

The accidental hysterectomy

Forcible removal of the uterusIn 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”. It’s certainly, ahem, special:

A woman residing in Oldham county, in this State, was attended by a midwife in her Read more

Twice bitten

On February 23rd, 1872, the Philadelphia Post published a breathtakingly crass news story:

Lion tamer's perilA thrilling scene occurred on Wednesday in this city. A lion-tamer came within an ace of being torn to pieces by a royal Bengal tiger, with which he was imprisoned in a cage.

“Thrilling”? I wonder how many of the witnesses of this ghastly event … Read more