Hektoen International

A Journal of Medical Humanities

Tag: autopsy

  • Dr. Doyen separates conjoined twins in 1902

    Howard FischerUppsala, Sweden “They were so close to each other that they preferred death to separation.”– Gabriel García Márquez, One Hundred Years of Solitude Eugène Louis Doyen, M.D. (1859–1916), was an internationally known Parisian surgeon. He was a “skilled and innovative physician,”1 famous for his dexterity and the speed of his operations.2 He wrote a…

  • On the way to school

    Mary Jumbelic Syracuse, New York, United States   Illustration by Joshua Jumbles. Published with permission. A thin line of blood oozed from a shallow cut in the skin, like the first stroke of an artist’s brush on a blank canvas. The second and third incisions intersected the first to form a large Y-shape. Sanguinous fluid…

  • Ludwig van Beethoven: music and medicine

    Michael Yafi Chaden Yafi Houston, Texas, United States   Beethoven home and surrounding area. Photos by Michael Yafi. December 2020 marked the 250th anniversary of the birth of Ludwig van Beethoven. The causes of the composer’s deafness and his death at the age of fifty-six have remained unknown, even after an autopsy carried out soon…

  • Howard Kelly’s avant-garde autopsy method

    Julius P. Bonello, George E. Tsourdinis Peoria, Illinois, United States   Figure 1. Dr. Howard Kelly (Photo courtesy of The Alan Mason Chesney Medical Archives of The Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions)3 Once dubbed the “Prince of Gynecology,” Dr. Howard A. Kelly was one of the most prominent surgeons in the United States in the early…

  • The legacy and maladies of Jonathan Swift

    JMS Pearce England, UK   Fig 1. Jonathan Swift Jonathan Swift (Fig 1.) is best known for his popular Lemuel Gulliver’s: Travels into Several Remote Nations of the World published in 1726. (Fig 2.) Exciting adventures combine with satirical metaphors that parodied contemporary customs and politics. Lemuel Gulliver, the narrator, begins as a modern man…

  • The Autopsy II

    F. Inge FaustEast Orange, New Jersey, United States The AutopsyAs from a surreal painting from long agoOr a bizarre story by Henry ThoreauA disquiet inside me begins to growThat will repeatedly return—I know.Spread before me is quite a scene:An Asian man not too tall but lean.He wears a gown that’s sparkling cleanAnd rubber gloves of…

  • The Autopsy

    F. Inge FaustEast Orange, New Jersey, United States Poet’s statement: This poem expresses my feelings and impression of an autopsy report I witnessed. This autopsy was performed on a 63-year-old man that was admitted and died within 24 hours. The remains of this man and the story they told . . . that is how…