A highly realistic 16th-century scene of a craniotomy; this is the earliest depiction of a neurosurgical operation in progress. A craniotomy is a procedure in which a bone flap is temporarily removed from the skull to access the brain. Here, the surgeon is dealing with many distractions and potential sources of infection during the operation, including a cat (lower right), who is chewing on a rat. Published in "Chirurgiae...Libri Septem" by Giovanni Andrea Della Croce, Venice, 1573.
March 14th, 2013
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