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Old 06-25-2017, 12:27 AM
Willcross Willcross is offline
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 327
Originally Posted by Jackmannii View Post
Coincidentally, I've been reading David Oshinsky's Bellevue, which talks about 19th century pre-Lister surgery, and the success rate for amputating limbs (without killing the patient) was about 50%, since post-op infection was very common.

Besides which, the lack of effective anesthesia made things dicier even if you survived. Supposedly surgeons at Bellevue had an "informed consent" procedure at the time which involved asking the patient "Will you have the leg off?". If the patient lost his nerve and said no, he was taken back to the ward. If the patient said yes, they proceeded to saw off the leg as fast as possible, ignoring all protests/screams while holding down the patient till the amputation was finished.
I wonder if a guillotine style device was ever used to removed the infected limb at the nearest joint? Seems like it would be much easier.