Monaural Stethoscope (From the Collection #6)

The Story In 1816, a French physician named René Laennec invented a non-invasive tool for “looking into the chest.” His inspiration came during an awkward encounter with a young woman suffering from symptoms of heart disease. To preserve her modesty and spare himself the embarrassment of placing his ear directly on her chest to listen … More Monaural Stethoscope (From the Collection #6)

Seton Needle (From the Collection #3)

The Story Seton needles first became popular in the 15th century as a means of producing counter-irritation. This approach to medical treatment believes that the creation of a superficial irritation on the body, through such means as cupping, blistering, or the use of seton needles, will distract the body from other irritations, reducing the primary … More Seton Needle (From the Collection #3)

Lebenswecker (From the Collection #1)

The Story Carl Baunscheidt (1809-1873), a German mechanic and inventor, first produced the lebenswecker in 1848. Translated most directly as “life awakener”, the lebenswecker is comprised of six parts (a wooden cap, head cover, shaft, and plunger, and a metal needle head and spring), and is used to pierce the skin without drawing blood. Baunscheidt … More Lebenswecker (From the Collection #1)

Scarificator (From the Collection #2)

The Story By the 19th century, the scarificator was an essential tool in the practice of bloodletting. First developed in the early 1700s as a more humane and efficient bloodletting instrument than lancets and fleams, scarificators had multiple blades that shot out with the press of a spring-loaded lever creating an instantaneous series of parallel … More Scarificator (From the Collection #2)