Every year in the United States, over 300,000 people with appendicitis have their appendix surgically removed. While over 11 million cases are reported annually, deaths lie somewhere around 50,000. Still seems like a huge number and a bad way to go, right? The percentage of deaths was much higher before this fabulously-stached bald man in the middle, Charles McBurney, came up with what is called “McBurney’s Incision.” Rather than cutting through the abdominal walls, he made a diagonal incision that split the appendix to expose it.
In this 1900 pic, the surgeon is assisted by both staff and students. No surgical or scrub caps here. But at least most of them are wearing gloves! The interwebs says only 7-14% of us will ever have appendicitis. Personally, I don’t know anyone who has had it (or at least made mention of it). What about you? Do you have your appendix? Have you lost anything else? Some wisdom teeth? I got rid of my tonsils at age 22.