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US News Ancient Peruvian Doctors Were Proficient At Skull Surgeries: Study

16:39  12 june  2018
16:39  12 june  2018 Source:   ibtimes.com

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The mortality rate of these surgeries during those times in Peru was known to be between 17%-25%. These skulls not just had one, but sometimes seven telltale holes. The study published in World Neurosurgery also shows how Peruvians in the ancient times refined their techniques of

Scientists have long known from ancient Peruvian skulls that the Incas were skillful brain surgeons . Graña and Rocca studied many of these skulls and all available documents on Inca surgery .

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No matter how technologically advanced our medical resources might be, a skull surgery or the act of trepanation — scraping, cutting, or drilling an opening into the head — is something we could never imagine in our wildest dreams. The chance of loss of life always lurks around in such cases, something that has led people to avoid these procedures as much as possible.

However, if the latest study from a group of researchers at the University of Miami is anything to go by, this was not the case in ancient Peru where doctors were extremely proficient at conducting procedures of this kind.

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Some 900 years ago, a Peruvian healer used a hand drill to make dozens of small holes in a patient's skull . Credit: Danielle Kurin. Cranial surgery is tricky business, even under 21st-century conditions (think aseptic environment

Why were the Peruvian practitioners so successful compared to Western attempts? [In the West,] doctors would just rinse [ surgical tools] off in water and wipe them down and use them in another patient. Also, surgery was done in hospitals.

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The skull of a child is seen inside a clay jar, a common practice for the burial of babies and children in ancient Greece known as pot-burial, at the ancient Falyron Delta cemetery in Athens © Reuters The skull of a child is seen inside a clay jar, a common practice for the burial of babies and children in ancient Greece known as pot-burial, at the ancient Falyron Delta cemetery in Athens The researchers came to this theory after analyzing the skulls of people from the Inca Empire — which is modern-day Peru — and the American Civil War. The findings noted in the work revealed the chances of survival of Inca patients after skull surgery was twice in comparison to those during the civil war, which occurred more than three centuries later in the era when doctors were much better equipped and trained.

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University of California in Santa Barbara (UCSB) investigators recently conducted a series of archaeological excavations that ended up revealing a peculiar practice among Ancient Peruvian healers. These early doctors were apparently able to successful conduct skull surgeries a

Tripitaka describes in detail how a young Indian doctor watched brain surgery being performed by a veteran surgeon . Examination of ancient Peruvian skulls by physicians today, reveals that these cranial surgeries seldom became infected, with most surviving.

“There are still many unknowns about the procedure and the individuals on whom trepanation was performed, but the outcomes during the Civil War were dismal compared to Incan times,” David S. Kushner, the lead author of the latest study, said in a statement.

A view shows partial skeleton remains, with skull and bones, from an ancient burial area that was excavated at a building site in Bordeaux © Reuters A view shows partial skeleton remains, with skull and bones, from an ancient burial area that was excavated at a building site in Bordeaux

“In Incan times, the mortality rate was between 17 and 25 percent, and during the Civil War, it was between 46 and 56 percent. That’s a big difference,” the researcher added. “The question is how did the ancient Peruvian surgeons have outcomes that far surpassed those of surgeons during the American Civil War?”

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was -better- skull - surgery -civil-war- doctors . But trepanation—the act of drilling, cutting, or scraping a hole in the skull for medical reasons— was practiced for thousands of years from ancient Greece to pre-Columbian Peru . A new study of their skulls and hundreds of others from pre-Columbian Peru

Inca surgeons in ancient Peru commonly and successfully removed small portions of patients' skulls to treat head injuries, according to a new study . The surgical procedure—known as trepanation— was most often performed on adult men, likely to treat injuries suffered during combat, researchers say.

Though this question cannot be exactly answered, the researchers speculated the lack of hygiene during the American Civil War could be the reason behind the drastic difference. They noted civil war surgeons used unsterilized medical tools and even their bare fingers to open cranial wounds for probing or breaking up blood clots.

“If there was an opening in the skull they would poke a finger into the wound and feel around, exploring for clots and bone fragments,” Kushner said.

As a result, nearly every civil war soldier with a gunshot wound suffered from the critical infection.

LUXOR, EGYPT - SEPTEMBER 9 : An Egyptian skull is seen near a tomb in Dra Abu el-Naga district of Luxor, Egypt on September 9, 2017. An ancient tomb which belongs to a goldsmith named Amenemhat from the time of Tutankhamun, the 18th Dynasty found in Egypt. (Photo by Ibrahim Ramadan/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images) © Getty LUXOR, EGYPT - SEPTEMBER 9 : An Egyptian skull is seen near a tomb in Dra Abu el-Naga district of Luxor, Egypt on September 9, 2017. An ancient tomb which belongs to a goldsmith named Amenemhat from the time of Tutankhamun, the 18th Dynasty found in Egypt. (Photo by Ibrahim Ramadan/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images) The data collected for the study suggested Peruvian doctors were good at preventing the infection, but there was no evidence of how they did that. Also, there was no way to determine what kind of anesthesia they used back in the day to perform the surgeries. Scientists think it could be coca leaves or some kind of fermented beverage, but nothing can be said for sure.

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Home Breaking News Ancient Peruvians Were Skilled Surgeons . Trepanning, the process of drilling holes into the skull , is the earliest example of surgical treatment among humans. June 05, 2018. Iceland genealogy study to cure rare diseases.

Trepanned skull from ancient Peru . The patient survived the operation. It seems that Britain’s doctors specializing in surgery were highly skilled and possessed a significant knowledge of anatomy and medical techniques as well.

“There are no written records, so we just don’t know,” Kushner added.

That said, one of the possible reasons behind their incredible success at this procedure could be practice. More than 800 trepanned skulls — with one to seven holes — dating back to 400 BC have been found in different burial caves and archaeological digs in Peru. This is more than the number of such skulls throughout the rest of the world.

A view shows partial skeleton remains, with skull and bones, from an ancient burial area that was excavated at a building site in Bordeaux © Reuters A view shows partial skeleton remains, with skull and bones, from an ancient burial area that was excavated at a building site in Bordeaux It is also worth noting the study shows ancient Peruvians improved their surgery techniques over the centuries. According to earliest samples from about 400 to 200 BC, more than half the patients died in the surgery, but then the success rate went well over 80 percent in the time leading up to the rise of the Incan Empire in the 15th century.

“Over time, from the earliest to the latest, they learned which techniques were better, and less likely to perforate the dura,” Kushner concluded. “They seemed to understand head anatomy and purposefully avoided the areas where there would be more bleeding. They also realized that larger-sized trepanations were less likely to be as successful as smaller ones. Physical evidence definitely shows that these ancient surgeons refined the procedure over time. Their success is truly remarkable.”

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