Surgin’ ego

The zine “Bizarrism” has a chilling account of a famous surgeon who Would Not Stop Cutting People Up, even after he was passed it. Never happen in a civilised advanced country where deference to superiors is not driven into people’s skulls from birth, say like the United Kingdom…
The Senile Surgeon
The surgeon Ferdinand Sauerbruch was one of the most famous figures in medicine during the first half of the twentieth century, and a hero in his native Germany. A man who lived for his work, Sauerbruch pioneered techniques which saved many thousands of lives. Having survived World War II and in his seventies, he continued to work at a furious pace in the Berlin hospital where he had wielded his scalpel for decades, but his colleagues there began to notice changes in him. He had always been a perfectionist, prone to fierce rages and notoriously difficult to work for, but his mood swings were becoming even more severe, and he was making basic mistakes that were costing his patients their lives. It became to dawn on his colleagues that there was something else going on.
That ‘something else’ was cerebral sclerosis, a disease which was literally eating away Sauerbruch’s brain. Perhaps the worst aspect of it was that the disease itself was preventing Sauebruch from realising there was anything wrong with him. So he kept operating, and the deaths kept mounting, but such was the almost godlike status in which he was held that no-one dared tell him to stop…

Professor Max Madlener, who realised exactly what was happening, was trying as far as possible to perform all the most difficult operations himself. The problem was that private patients at the hospital were demanding to be treated by the great Sauerbruch, and were thus signing their own death warrants.


About dwighttowers

Below the surface...
This entry was posted in a little self-knowledge, competence, death, fear, science and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

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